If you haven’t already heard, HPE has officially sold off their software test tool division (UFT, LoadRunner, ALM etc.) to Micro Focus.
So what does that mean for current HPE test tool users?
Here are the top five things you need to know about the merger:
How will this Impact you if you’re a Customer?
This one is easy.
If you’re already a customer, you don’t have to do anything.
There won’t be any disruption in support or updates with the service that you’re currently receiving.
Shane mentioned that he recently returned from spending a week in Israel with their engineering team where they worked on delivering a strategy they’ve been developing and honing for the last several years.
So in terms of that roadmap, he doesn’t expect customers to see any significant changes.
What will be the fate of the Segue and Compuware Testing Products Micro Focus Acquired Earlier?
This is where things get interesting.
Although it is still quite early in the merger process, it seems that rather than focusing on killing off products that they have been exploring ways to actually leverage all of the existing tools.
Similar strategies are in place for all the solutions in which you might see some functional overlap. What you might not have thought about, however, are the potential synergies down the road.
For example, HPE created a Cloud-based service called Functional Testing that’s currently a beta offering. It allows you to take scripts like UFT, LeanFT and Selenium and just scale them out to any browser, operating system or mobile device that you might need on the fly. (Think of a service similar to Sauce Labs.)
That could definitely be a win. They’re going to look at how can they execute Silk tests in that same platform and extend the Silk environment to fit into that solution the same way that LeanFT would today.
That’s just one of the ways they looking to leverage similar intellectual property and integrations across the portfolio to make things richer and stronger rather than trying to eliminate things.
Still Embracing Open Source
I asked whether the Micro Focus culture is also on board with embracing open source technologies (like HPE did with LeanFT) and was told “Absolutely.”
Shane offered the example of what he saw with the Silk test tool portfolio. They have a recorder for Selenium (that’s a free recorder you can download today), so they will definitely continue to embrace and extend open source technologies.
Shane feels there is a lot of value they can add on top of the open source solutions.
Also, as most of you know, another advantage of older, vendor-based test tools like Mercury/HPE is the ability to take years of experience helping customers and apply that to solutions to enhance the world of open source tools.
Shane even hinted that they may go as far as making some of their own kind of internal IP open to the community.
Although it’s more hypothetical than official at this point, it sounds like Micro Focus has big plans in terms of what they can offer the testing community and how they can leverage some of our experience there.
Putting Money Where Their Mouth Is
Micro Focus is actually a sponsor of the Selenium project, so if you go to SeleniumHQ, you’ll see them listed in the Selenium-Level Sponsors section.
This highlights the trends that I pointed out years ago about vendor solutions embracing open source solutions.
The HPE Test Tools are Part of a Software Company Again
I’ll be honest. I wasn’t a fan of HPE’s acquisition of Mercury Interactive. I felt that Mercury was a dedicated software test tool company that became really lame once HPE got hold of it.
If you ever attended Mercury World in the early days and then HPE Discover after the merger, you know what I’m talking about. I don’t give a flip about hardware or frankly much else HPE had to offer, so it’s pretty cool that the test tools are once again part of a software company.
Shane agreed that since they are once again a software company now and are pretty excited again, there is a pretty broad and deep test tool portfolio at Micro Focus; everything from the testing products to operations automation to Linux and mainframe test tools.
I think this merger really is a win-win, and moving away from a hardware-centric organization is going to be a much-needed breath of fresh air.
I, for one, am looking forward to seeing what changes Micro Focus makes in the coming years.