Science Study Guide Essay

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Mr. Feazell said he is concerned that Dell's focus on the buyout will distract the computer maker and that Mr. Icahn's involvement adds more uncertainty to an already risky situation for customers.

Some Dell customers said they aren't fazed by the silence, however, because they have plans to ensure they aren't too reliant on Dell products.

"I'm not too worried," said Daniel Petlon, chief information officer of Enterasys Networks Inc., a Salem, N.H., part of a joint venture between Siemens AG SIE.XE -0.23% and private-equity firm Gores Group LLC. Enterasys has 1,500 Dell laptops and uses the company's servers and storage systems in its data center. But Mr. Petlon said the products are commodities that are easily replaced. "If something happens to make us want to move away, we'll do it slowly at a normal hardware-refresh pace," Mr. Petlon said.

Mr. Dell himself has been publicly silent as some of the posturing around the buyout has ramped up. But the CEO appears to be trying to conduct business as usual.

Bob Venero, CEO of Future Tech Enterprise Inc., a Holbrook, N.Y., company that sells Dell gear to Fortune 500 companies, said that while he hasn't spoken to the computer maker about the buyout, Mr. Dell recently spent an hour talking to one of Future Tech's big customers about technology.

In Round Rock, where Dell has been based for two decades and is the biggest employer, company representatives after the buyout announcement told the city that there was no plan to move the company's headquarters. But there hasn't been much contact since, a city spokesman said.

There are signs Dell has tried to quell uncertainty, though.

On Friday, a day after Dell disclosed that Mr. Icahn had proposed an alternative