Apparently, 3PAR is partnering with Exanet now, using Exanet’s clustered NAS on front of 3PAR’s storage. One can’t help but wonder whether this is a reaction to 3PAR’s previous clustered-NAS partner ONStor getting bought out by 3PAR competitor LSI. Such is life in the computer industry. Each company has its own web of partnerships, and occasionally has to scramble a bit because of changes somewhere in that web. Did a partner get bought out? Did a supplier enter a strategic relationship with a competitor? Did a partner’s partner do something that might force you to change? It’s particularly hard on the little guys, but it affects the big guys too. I’m sure some of Sun’s partners have had to make some strategic shifts because of the Oracle buy-out, just as they might have had to make different shifts if the buyer had been IBM instead.