Stratus Adds Telecom Features to Fault-Tolerant Servers

Stratus plans to bring telecom capabilities gained in its acquisition of Cemprus onto its fault-tolerant server platform.

Stratus Technologies Inc., known for its fault-tolerant line of servers, is getting back into the telecommunications business.

Stratus Computer Inc. was bought by Ascend Communications in 1998, which then spun off the companys enterprise computing group to form Stratus Technologies Inc. Over the past five years, the telecom part of the company went through several hands, including Lucent Technologies Inc. and Platinum Equity Partners, which named it Cemprus LLC.

In February, Stratus, of Maynard, Mass., bought Cemprus for an undisclosed amount of money, and now officials there are talking about plans to bring the telecom capabilities—from hardware to middleware—onto its fault-tolerant server platform.

Currently the Cemprus technology runs on Stratus Continuum line of high-end servers and on hardware from Sun Microsystems Inc., according to Ali Kafel, director of business development at Stratus. Kafel, who will oversee the Cemprus business, had been with Stratus before the Ascend purchase in 1998 and now is returning to the company now that it has bought Cemprus.

Cemprus is a wholly owned subsidiary of Stratus.

"There is a lot of potential," Kafel said of the marriage of the fault-tolerant servers and Cemprus telecom products. "The fault-tolerant servers are just a very, very good fit for the telecom industry. You have fault-tolerant capabilities and competitive pricing."

Stratus currently offers three series of Wintel-based fault-tolerant servers, from the entry-level one- to two-way ftServer 3300 line to the enterprise-class four-way ftServer 6500 series. The fault tolerance comes via duplicate components that process the same instruction at the same time, enabling the backup to keep processing the job should the frontline component fail.

The Cemprus acquisition will enable Stratus to expand its customer base into a space in which it hasnt played for five years, Kafel said.

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