The retirement of the MediaSmart line seemed more or less inevitable given Microsoft's decision to kill Windows Home Server's popular Drive Extender feature, under which multiple storage resources could be pooled together, Pund-IT's King said.
Microsoft is getting most of the heat from the Home Server user community over Drive Extender's demise, so HP many not experience any wash-back from that, King said.
HP and Microsoft have a long-standing relationship on PC and server software. But questions were raised about the relationship between the companies on mobile products in the wake of HP's acquisition of Palm for US$1.2 billion to further its mobile strategy.
HP officials vaguely said when the deal was announced in April that the company would retain a strategic partnership with Microsoft, and that granular details on its road map would emerge as the transaction with Palm closes. But HP still uses Microsoft OSes on a number of mobile devices, including Windows Mobile 6.5 on iPaq mobile devices, and Windows 7 on its Slate 500 business tablet.
The home-media server business has never really taken off for either company, so the fall-out from MediaSmart's retirement shouldn't affect the relationship between the companies, Pund-IT's King said.
"The companies have clashed before -- over Linux, for example -- but I doubt this will cause a huge amount of friction, at least for the time being."
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