Page Two

By Peter Galli  |  Posted 2002-09-09 Print this article Print

With no upgrade path for Solaris on non-Sun hardware, Groenveld said he was now "under a lot of pressure from customers to transition our existing servers back to Microsoft."

Logicals Hopper agreed. By closing the door to Solaris 9 on x86 hardware other than its own, Sun will force developers and research and educational institutions to gravitate toward a lower-cost Linux or Microsoft environment, he said.

Solaris 9 has numerous enterprise features, such as homogeneous networking, which allows single sign-on and secure computing. "Not having access to the advances found in Solaris 9 puts us at a grave disadvantage," Hopper said.

The community wants Sun to release Solaris 9 as a stand-alone product, not just as a bundle with its two-way LX50 rack-mount server, which runs Solaris 9 and Suns Linux operating system.

"Sun still regards software as something that helps sell hardware. Nothing more. And they want to push sales of the LX50," Hopper said.

Bill Moffitt, a Solaris product line manager in Menlo Park, Calif., said the solution for customers wanting to run Solaris 9 on the x86 architecture is to buy Suns LX50 boxes, which are offered with an Intel Corp. 1.4GHz Pentium III with 512MB of memory or dual 1.4GHz Pentium IIIs with 2GB of memory.

Moffitt defended Suns business model, saying the company was a complete systems provider that wanted to deliver a system it could stand behind, support and guarantee. "Selling a stand-alone operating environment that runs on random pieces of hardware is simply not part of that model," he said.

Sun continues to talk with representatives of the developer and user community about a broader offering on the x86 platform.

Related stories:
  • Solaris on Intel Debate Rages On
  • Sun to Ship Solaris 9 for Intel Servers
  • Solaris in the Cross Hairs

    Peter Galli has been a financial/technology reporter for 12 years at leading publications in South Africa, the UK and the US. He has been Investment Editor of South Africa's Business Day Newspaper, the sister publication of the Financial Times of London.

    He was also Group Financial Communications Manager for First National Bank, the second largest banking group in South Africa before moving on to become Executive News Editor of Business Report, the largest daily financial newspaper in South Africa, owned by the global Independent Newspapers group.

    He was responsible for a national reporting team of 20 based in four bureaus. He also edited and contributed to its weekly technology page, and launched a financial and technology radio service supplying daily news bulletins to the national broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, which were then distributed to some 50 radio stations across the country.

    He was then transferred to San Francisco as Business Report's U.S. Correspondent to cover Silicon Valley, trade and finance between the US, Europe and emerging markets like South Africa. After serving that role for more than two years, he joined eWeek as a Senior Editor, covering software platforms in August 2000.

    He has comprehensively covered Microsoft and its Windows and .Net platforms, as well as the many legal challenges it has faced. He has also focused on Sun Microsystems and its Solaris operating environment, Java and Unix offerings. He covers developments in the open source community, particularly around the Linux kernel and the effects it will have on the enterprise.

    He has written extensively about new products for the Linux and Unix platforms, the development of open standards and critically looked at the potential Linux has to offer an alternative operating system and platform to Windows, .Net and Unix-based solutions like Solaris.

    His interviews with senior industry executives include Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Linus Torvalds, the original developer of the Linux operating system, Sun CEO Scot McNealy, and Bill Zeitler, a senior vice president at IBM.

    For numerous examples of his writing you can search under his name at the eWEEK Website at


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