Sun Updates Java Enterprise, Desktop Systems

Sun brings Java Enterprise server suite to Red Hat Linux, and offers "per-citizen" licensing; JDS 2.0 gives administrators better desktop management tools.

Sun Microsystems Inc. will make a number of product announcements at its quarterly Network Computing Webcast in California and its SunNetwork Conference 2004 in Shanghai this week—not the least of these being the second version of its Java Enterprise System and Java Desktop System.

The biggest change in the Java Enterprise System is that it will now run on Red Hat Linux in addition to the Solaris operating environment. Pricing will remain the same across both operating systems, John Loiacono, executive vice president of software at Sun, in Santa Clara, Calif., told eWEEK.

Sun is also launching a per-citizen pricing model for the server software where the price is determined by the size of a countrys population and whether that country is ranked as more, less or least developed by the United Nations.

While the system will not run on SuSE Linux from Novell Inc. or any of the other Linux distributions, the plan is to target Microsoft Windows, SuSE (Novell), IBMs Unix-based AIX and HP-UX in future releases. Loiacono declined to give a timeframe, saying only that "we are working on those and plan to get the Java Enterprise System on all major platforms."

Asked why Sun chose Red Hat first, Loiacono said that in the Linux space this is the distribution most requested and its the dominant player numberwise worldwide. Java Enterprise System will not run on SuSE because "the SuSE and Red Hat distributions are not compatible," he said. Suns Application Server 7.1 has also been included in the software stack at no additional cost, he said.

The second version of the Java Desktop System, which is currently powered by SuSE Linux but will be available on Solaris by midyear, will include better usability, USB support, and a new management capability that will allow desktops to be remotely managed for synchronization, security and network control, including turning off macros, Loiacono said.

Sun will also announce three new identity products: the Java System Identity Manager, Java System Access Manager and Java System Directory Server Enterprise Edition. These solutions are scheduled to ship in July and will not be part of the Java Enterprise System, at least not initially.

/zimages/5/28571.gifFor more on Suns trio of identity management products, click here.

"This is a huge, huge opportunity for Sun and is pervasive in 100 percent of out accounts, and user access management is a problem every customer on the planet has," Loiacono said.

The Sun Java System Identity Manager is priced on a per-user basis and the starting pricing is approximately $150,000. The Sun Java System Access Manager is also priced on a per-user basis and the starting pricing is approximately $100,000, while the starting price for the Sun Java System Directory Server Enterprise Edition is approximately $50,000.

But these are list prices, and Sun will work with individual customers to determine pricing based on the elements highlighted above, Loiacono said, adding that subscription pricing could be an option, "but we might do this differently. We also have not yet decided whether to include it as part of JES going forward," he said.

Lastly, Sun will also announce a new RFID Development Kit, a starter kit that contains all the necessary components for doing RFID, but its cost and availability were not immediately available.

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