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Breaking News from COMDEX: Sun and AMD Form Strategic Alliance

Sun and AMD to Offer New Family of Opteron Processor-based Systems with Optimized Solaris, Linux, and Java Platforms

At COMDEX in Las Vegas today, Sun Microsystems, Inc. and AMD announced a strategic alliance through which Sun will deliver new AMD Opteron processor-based Sun Fire systems and versions of the Solaris Operating System (OS) and the Java platform as well as Linux OS. The new Sun Fire servers will provide customers with all the benefits of the Solaris OS and the Java Enterprise System running on industry standard x86 architecture with breakthrough AMD Opteron processor performance. The alliance plans to also include long-term joint technology development to create future hardware and software offerings.

"Over the past year we've made a dramatic move in leveraging industry economics to bring customers the enterprise-class benefits of our Solaris OS and Java technology at compelling price points," said Scott McNealy, chairman and CEO, Sun Microsystems, Inc. "This means that Sun customers can now get all the benefits of Solaris OS, Linux and Java technologies running on their choice of UltraSPARC and x86 systems. With the addition of the AMD Opteron processor, we are setting a new industry standard by delivering even more choice and performance to our customers."

By offering both Solaris OS and Linux, Sun customers will have a choice of enterprise operating systems and access to thousands of applications. In addition, Sun's Java Enterprise System will enable Sun's customers with AMD Opteron processor-based systems to develop and deploy applications in a simple, predictable, cost effective manner.

"Today's agreement with Sun is a strong validation of AMD's growing customer acceptance inside the enterprise," said Hector Ruiz, president and CEO of AMD. "The combination of Sun's network computing expertise and the AMD Opteron processor platform will allow IT customers unprecedented flexibility and scalability. Sun's support adds additional momentum to our growing AMD Opteron processor ecosystem."

"In May of this year, Scott and I outlined our vision for a highly scalable but low-cost computing infrastructure," said Larry Ellison, CEO of Oracle Corporation. "Today, Sun, AMD and Oracle are working together to deliver on that vision. Soon Oracle will run on AMD Opteron under both Solaris and Linux. These new systems offer the rare combination of 64-bit big system performance and a very low price tag."

The strategic alliance between the two companies will include:

  • A full range of AMD Opteron processor-based Sun Fire systems from Sun: Throughout the course of 2004, Sun will introduce new AMD Opteron processor powered systems. The current roadmap calls for two and four-way servers to be rolled-out within the next calendar year.
  • Solaris OS and Sun's Java Enterprise System optimization for the AMD Opteron processor: Sun and AMD will collaborate to accelerate the platform development, optimize the performance and increase enterprise adoption for the Solaris OS and Sun's Java Enterprise System running on the AMD Opteron processor. Currently customers can run Solaris software on AMD Opteron in 32-bit mode. Sun plans to make 64-bit Solaris available on the AMD Opteron processor in the first half of 2004.
  • Future AMD Opteron Processor-based Designs: Sun and AMD will collaborate on a portfolio of future AMD Opteron processor-based systems and scalability beyond 4-way AMD Opteron processor systems. The parties will also collaborate on coherent HyperTransport technology implementations.
  • Joint ISV Development Program: Sun and AMD will jointly form an iForce Partner Program for ISVs and developers creating and porting applications to the Solaris OS. This new program will include engineering support from both companies, a seed unit program for ISVs as well as a Sun/AMD Developer Resource Kit, which is available for download at or
  • Joint Customer Centric Marketing Programs: Sun and AMD will collaborate on worldwide marketing activities including a customer seed unit program; joint sales activities; as well as joint product, ISV, developer and channel marketing programs.

    Key independent software vendors such as BEA Systems, Cadence Design Systems, Inc., Computer Associates, Documentum, MatrixOne, Oracle, SAP AG, and Synopsys, Inc., are pledging support for this new standard in network computing.

  • More Stories By Java News Desk

    JDJ News Desk monitors the world of Java to present IT professionals with updates on technology advances, business trends, new products and standards in the Java and i-technology space.

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