company_name = Veritas Software
Public company, corporation
foundation = 1989
location = Mountain View, California,
Gary Bloom, CEO
revenue = $2.04 billion USD (2004)
num_employees = 7000
VxSF(incl. VxFSand VxVM)
NetBackup Backup Exec
Cluster Server (VCS)
Volume Replicator (VVR)
homepage = [http://www.veritas.com/ www.veritas.com]
Veritas Software Corp. was an international
softwarecompany that was founded in 1983 as Tolerant Systems, renamed Veritas Software Corp. in 1989, and merged with Symantecin 2005. It was headquartered in Mountain View, California. The company specialized in storage management software including the first commercial journaling file system, VxFS, VxVM, VCS, the personal/small office backup software Backup Execand the popular enterprise backupsoftware NetBackup. Veritas was listed on the S&P 500and the NASDAQ-100under the VRTS ticker symbol.
Tolerant Systems was a company founded in 1983 by Eli Alon and Dale Shipley (both from
Intel) to build fault-tolerantcomputer systems based on the idea of "shoe-box" building blocks.
Tolerant initially based their shoe-box system on the
32016microprocessor from National Semiconductor, and then upgraded the systems to the 32032 when those processors, with a 32-bitdata bus, became available. The shoe-box consisted of a OS processor, running a version of Unixcalled TX, and on which applications ran, and an I/O processor, running a Real Time Executive developed by Tolerant called RTE; both processors were 320xx processors. The system was marketed as the "Eternity Series."
Each shoe-box had two
Ethernetconnectors which allowed a fault-tolerant connection to other shoe-box systems. Further, a proprietary I/O system was created that ran at 3 Mbyte/second up to 15 m (50 feet) allowing up to 16 peripherals per I/O. Tolerant developed a custom Disk Controller, Communications Interface Processor (CIP), and Tape Controller that communicated on this I/O bus.
The CIP was a front-end for 12 or 16 serial ports also based on the National 32016 processor and executing RTE. The CIP could host forms software, or other pre-processing applications to allow intelligent use of the terminals that were attached. This lightened the interrupt overhead to the OS processor. One example was customization of the
vi text editorwhere the CIP hosted a small part of the application allowing for local character echoing while in insert mode.
The software gained a level of fault-tolerance through check-pointing technology. Applications needed to be fortified with this check-pointing to allow roll-back of the application on another processor if a hardware failure occurred.
Tolerant also developed a forerunner of today's RAID systems by incorporating a
journaling file systemand multiple copies or N-plexingthe disk drive content.
The company got out of the hardware business in 1989 and became
Veritas Softwareby using this earlier work in journaled file systems as the basis for a new line of products for Windows NTand Unix systems.
Historical unusual human resources policies
* Offices — Not Cubicles: In contrast with most high-technology companies, which put most workers in cubicles, and a few — notably
Inteland Hewlett-Packard— who put all employees, from the CEOon down, in cubicles, Veritas had a policy of putting all engineers, technical writers, and other "creative" workers in offices with doors that could be closed to exclude outside conversations. Most such workers that lasted six months got offices with outside windows.
* No Secrets: In most Silicon-Valley companies, important decisions take a long time to filter down to most employees, even those who design the company's new products. Veritas had a more
egalitarianapproach: every employee was by SEC definition, an "insider". Every week, there was a company meeting in the lunchroom, where the CEO, Mark Leslie, told all employees the company secrets, including quarterly results, annual results, upcoming products, experimental projects, and new contracts. The disadvantage of making all employees insiders is that every employee was a potential insider trader. For this reason, the SEC required five blackout periods when employees could not buy or sell Veritas stock: one month before each quarterly or annual reportwas issued. In 1995-96, Veritas was a very small company with fewer than 100 employees. Its small size made the secrecy policy possible. A few years later, Veritas had expanded 20-fold, so this policy became impossible to maintain.
* Unintended Consequences: Ironically, CEO Mark Leslie was indicted by the SEC for having "artificially inflated and/or intentionally manipulated and distorted Veritas' reported financial results and misled Veritas' independent auditors" The CFO, Controller, assistant Controller and Head of Sales were also named in the SEC's 2007 indictment. The case claims that each knowingly participated in a fraudulent scheme by artificially inflating Veritas' publicly reported revenues and earnings through an improper round-trip transaction with America Online; Basically, a product swap which was recorded on each company's books as sale of product and services with no contingencies, which was not the case. The SEC claims that the fair market value and quantity of the products that were provided were grossly overstated on each side to inflate revenues and subsequently earnings. The controller and assistant controller settled the case and agreed to provide testimony supporting the SECs case. The case is still pending for the other three defendants, including Mark Leslie.
* April 1997 - Acquired
OpenVisionTechnologies. This included NetBackup.
* May 1999 - Acquired the Network and Storage Management Group of
Seagate Software. This included Backup Exec.
* August 2003 - Acquired Precise Software Solutions, one of the Application Performance Management (APM) leaders.
Merger with Symantec
December 16, 2004, Veritas and Symantecannounced their plans for a merger in a deal valued at $13.5 billion. It was the largest announced software industry merger to date. On June 24, 2005, Veritas and Symantecshareholders voted to approve the merger. On July 2, 2005, Symantec and Veritas finalized the merger and the resulting company has retained the name Symantec.
* [http://www.symantec.com/ Symantec Corp]
* [http://www.cbronline.com/companyprofile.asp?guid=F711F690-1B10-4FCA-B80A-494F0332E1E0 Computer Business Review : Veritas Company Profile]
* [http://www.sec.gov/litigation/litreleases/2007/lr20178.htm SEC Indictment]
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