If HP's board fires Léo Apotheker as rumored, one of the following candidates may turn out to be the new CEO
The co-founder and former chief of Sun Microsystems is our serious suggestion for HP's next CEO. We'd also urge the HP board to consider IBM CEO Sam Palmisano, who's experienced in transitioning a big company from boxes to services. In addition, he's coming closer to IBM's mandatory retirement age and might be available. McNealy is available now, so he's a more likely option.
Pros: He actually understands both technology and the technology industry. He's run a company that has produced leading software and hardware, with a passionate user base and deep tech cred. He has deep relationships across Silicon Valley and the tech industry. He's a nice guy -- HP could really use one. And he is considered to have strong integrity, which would give HP a leadership gold star.
Cons: He fatally misjudged the business around open source, causing Sun to eventually get sold to Oracle as a life-saving event. He struggled to adapt the hardware business as it became commoditized.