HP e3000 jobs still to be had — in small quantities

You can still find listings of HP e3000 jobs, and there remain some big users of the doomed midrange system — including the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, which operates about 70 of the Hewlett-Packard Co. servers.

But at this point, there likely are many more people with HP e3000 experience on their resumes than there are jobs available for them. Searches on job boards turn up few openings for positions related to the e3000, which HP stopped selling in 2003 and will stop supporting at the end of next year.

Denys Beauchemin, a longtime HP e3000 consultant and a former director of the defunct Interex user group for HP customers, said via e-mail that the number of IT workers he sees who are looking for e3000-related jobs is far greater than the total of job openings he’s aware of.

“The 3000 installed base is inexorably dwindling,” Beauchemin wrote. “There are islands of these systems, and they need knowledgeable folks at times — but this is rare.”

He added that if he were the CIO of a company that still used the e3000 as its primary system, “I would be moving heaven and earth to get off the platform, or updating my resume as I could not in good conscience be happy with the status quo.” Continuing to rely on the e3000 “would be a great disservice” to your company, Beauchemin said.

Although the clock is ticking on HP’s support for the systems, independent contractors such as Hudson, Mass.-based System Maintenance Services Inc. (SMS) are promising continued support well beyond the vendor’s 2008 cutoff date.

Dave Gorka, vice president of marketing at SMS, said his firm’s customer base includes about 5,500 e3000 users, most of which don’t have the ability or the budget to migrate their applications to other hardware platforms. SMS has a large stock of spare parts for the e3000 and believes that users will continue to run the systems for many more years, Gorka said.

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