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SPARC History - 2000, May week 4

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Sun Microsystems Sun to Acquire Dolphin Interconnect Solutions Assets and Technology

PALO ALTO, Calif., May 31 - Sun Microsystems, Inc. today announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire and license the InfiniBand-related assets of Dolphin Interconnect Solutions, Inc. a leading developer of high performance computer interconnects. The closing of the transaction is subject to the usual and customary closing conditions, including Dolphin's shareholder approval. The proposed acquisition of these assets will strengthen Sun's technology portfolio.

Dolphin's development efforts should lead to increased scalability of the InfiniBand architecture, enabling higher performance and lower cost interconnects. Subject to the closing, this I/O technology, which not only enables efficient communication between computers and network attached devices, but also increases the numbers of systems that can be connected, will be applied to Sun's server and storage systems.

The primary assets proposed to be acquired and/or licensed include the intellectual property associated with the InfiniBand development efforts. Also as part of the agreement, certain Dolphin employees in Oslo, Norway working on the InfiniBand technology would join Sun's engineering team and would remain in Oslo.

Editor's note:- Sun has a long tradition of acquiring companies which originated technologies central to its server architecture. Previous acquisitions included - Cray Research (for the backplane technology used in the SPARCcenter 2000), IMP (for the ftSPARC fault tolerant technology), and Encore (for mainframe class RAID storage technology). We predict the next acquisition will be a SAN company. This is an area important to all network computing companies, and one in which Sun has few significant assets at present.
ZNYX Announces World's 1st 64 Bit PCI Multi-Port Ethernet Adapter

Fujitsu Siemens and GemStone Systems Announce Partnership

SIMCHECK II portable RAM tester supports 200-pin DIMMs

GNP is Finalist at Growing with Technology Awards Ceremony

JNI Opens Ops Center in Germany

StarBox Netsystems Unveils Dual Processor 1U Server

LHS is the #1 Performance Leader in Wireless Billing

High-End Unix Systems Overpowering IBM Mainframes

Cisco Unveils New Internet Software Group

Red Hat Chooses Training Partner

NSI and Data General Partner on High-Availability

EVSX Announces Name Change
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Squeak! - Animal Brands and Metaphors in the Storage Market
Squeak! - Animal Brands and Metaphors in the Storage Market
Animal marketing metaphors are popular in service industries, but you'd be surprised how many companies have used animals in their marketing of data storage products and services.

The storage market was worth over $150 billion in 2005, and as it gets bigger - more companies will turn to animal brands to help differentiate their otherwise bland products and lend them artificial (or deserving) characters and virtues.

The idea behind this type of marketing is to suggest positive connotations so it's unlikely that anyone will choose to associate their products with gremlins. But you may be surprised by the population of the storage ark.

This reference articles lists all known companies who have furry marketing brands, and also includes some which are slimy, scaly and scary too. ...read the article, Mice in storage
ZNYX Networks ZNYX Networks Announces World's First 64 Bit / 66 MHz PCI Multi-Port Ethernet Adapter

FREMONT, CALIFORNIA - May 30, 2000 - ZNYX Networks today announced the ZX370 series of 64 bit / 66 MHz PCI multi-port high performance Fast Ethernet adapters. The first available model with be the ZX374 with four 10/100 Mbps Ethernet ports driven by ZNYX Networks' RAINlink™ High Availability software.

The ZX370 series addresses three shortcomings found on other multiport network adapters: size, bandwidth, and latency. The short-form PCI card of the ZX370 series fits in virtually any size PCI slot including those on Sun® Netra™ t1 servers. To reduce bottlenecks on the host computer's bus, the ZX370 uses a wide 64-bit PCI bus, providing nearly twice the bandwidth of a standard bus. Even more important is the ZX370's use of a 66 MHz bus connection. Because the ZX370 series also operates in 32 bit and 33 MHz PCI slots, other PCI computers used by the telecommunications industry including the full line of Sun Netra and Enterprise™ PCI servers can take advantage of this adapter.

A key requirement in the telecommunications networking infrastructure is high availability. Embedded into the driver, RAINlink high availability software provides continuous connectivity to LAN infrastructures through link redundancy with fast deterministic failover, as well as system-to-system and system-to-switch trunking. On the ZX374, RAINlink's automatic load balancing and link aggregation allow creation of 400 Mbps (800 Mbps full duplex) high bandwidth connections between server clusters.

The ZX374 will be first available under an OEM partners program. General availability is scheduled for August 2000 with a list price of $988, including embedded RAINlink drivers. Initial support will be for Solaris 2.6, 7, and 8 on both SPARC and Intel processors, with Linux, Windows 2000, LynxOS, and VxWorks to follow shortly. An optional Boot ROM is available for custom applications.
Fujitsu Siemens Computers Fujitsu Siemens Computers and GemStone Systems Announce Strategic Partnership

MUNICH, Germany and BEAVERTON, Ore. - (BUSINESS WIRE) - May 30, 2000- Fujitsu Siemens Computers, Munich/Germany and GemStone Systems, Inc. today announced a long-term strategic partnership that will include mutual technology transfer and joint comprehensive sales and marketing programs.

The GemStone/J(R) application server software will serve as a framework for Fujitsu Siemens Computers projects developed on its world-class PRIMEPOWER Enterprise Unix server line -- formerly known as GP7000F. Fujitsu Siemens Computers and GemStone will leverage each other's products to provide mutual customers with a rock solid software infrastructure running on high performance hardware for the design and support of B2B Internet commerce sites for the new economy. The combination of the SOLARIS/SPARC64-based PRIMEPOWER servers and the GemStone/J application server will enable application developers to cut their development time of mission critical next generation Internet commerce applications by more than 30 percent.

The PRIMEPOWER server family, offering no single point of failure, multiple partitions, online replacement of network power supply units, hard disks, controllers and other components, is an ideal platform for integrated business-to-business applications. Error detection and correction technology ensures the security of data in memory caches, while sophisticated cluster technologies make it possible to set up high-availability systems and ensure permanent access to all data relevant for business purposes.

"We are very honored to be chosen by Fujitsu Siemens Computers to be the first application server company to be certified on the PRIMEPOWER family of UNIX operating systems," stated Ken Irinaga, president and chief executive officer at GemStone Systems, Inc. "Fujitsu Siemens Computers' strong technology leadership in enterprise computing and information technology, backed by a strong foundation of the Top 1000 Enterprise customers in Europe, and a huge installed base, are key to expanding GemStone's presence worldwide."
INNOVENTIONS SIMCHECK II portable RAM tester supports 200-pin DIMMs as used by Sun

Houston, Texas - May 26, 2000 - INNOVENTIONS, Inc., which manufactures the SIMCHECK range of portable memory testers has recently introduced a 200-pin DIMM ADAPTER which enables SIMCHECK II to test 200-pin FPM/EDO DIMM (Dual-Inline-Memory-Module) modules with a basic configuration of 144 bits as used in many Sun workstations.
GNP Inc. Magazine and Cisco Systems Name GNP Finalist at Growing with Technology Awards Ceremony

MONROVIA, Calif. - May 25, 2000 - GNP Computers™, a leader in the design, manufacture and customization of open systems computer platforms for the convergent communications industry, today announced its selection as a finalist in the Innovators in Sales and Marketing category of the Inc./Cisco Systems Growing with Technology Awards.

The Inc./Cisco Growing with Technology Awards program was designed to recognize small and medium-sized businesses that are using the Internet and technology to succeed in the New Economy. The winners of the program serve as role models and icons for other businesses that want to use technology to fuel growth and compete more effectively. A panel of seven industry leaders selected 12 winners and 38 finalists in four categories from over 500 applications.

"Selecting winners for the Inc./Cisco Growing with Technology Award was a challenging process for our judging panel because we received so many quality applications from companies who have dramatically improved their business through the use of technology," said Joe Diodati, director of worldwide field marketing for Cisco Systems small/medium line of business and judge for the Inc./Cisco Growing with Technology Awards. "GNP was selected because their company stood out as a company that is raising the competitive bar through the use of Internet business applications."
JNI JNI Opens New European Operations Center in Germany

SAN DIEGO and MUNCHEN, Germany (BUSINESS WIRE) - May 25, 2000 - JNI Corporation today announced the opening of its new European headquarters in Munchen, Germany and the hiring of Dietmar Schnabel as the Pan-European Business Manager for the company. Schnabel has more than 15 years of sales experience in technology, the last seven in storage-related businesses, working closely with OEMs, distributors and resellers across Europe.

JNI has been operating in Europe for several years and has an extensive network of distributors and resellers operating in every European country. JNI's lead distributor in Europe is ACAL Fibre Channel Solutions, Hampshire, U.K. European sales of JNI products accounted for more than 15 percent of the company's revenue last quarter.
StarBox Netsystems StarBox Netsystems Unveils Dual Processor 1U Server

May 23, 2000 - StarBox Netsystems today unveiled the first 1U ultrathin server for ASPs capable of supporting dual high-performance Pentium III CPUs. Designed from the start to support high-traffic, high-speed application service, the StarBox iBox/SBC server offers ASPs an affordable, scalable alternative to generic rackmount server products -- many of which consume 2U of valuable rack space.

"For ASPs handling mission-critical applications for their customers, any failure can be a deal breaker," explained David Van Beveren, president and chief executive officer of StarBox Netsystems. "The fully redundant, dual processor-equipped iBox/SBC offers service providers the kind of power and safety features that can help them sleep at night knowing that any potential hardware failure can be fixed with little or no system downtime in the field."

All standard iBox/SBC servers include two drive bays for installing the unit's field replaceable, high-capacity disk drives; dual, hot swappable cooling fans; and two PCI slots for SCSI, SAN or clustering expansion -- all in the same space-saving 1U form factor. As a result, these compact ASP servers can be stacked 40 or more in a standard rackmount cabinet.

StarBox delivers its iBox family of 1U servers with Linux, NT or Solaris preinstalled, and offers bundled application packages such as the Ensim ServerXchange application server and Zeus Clustered Web Server. Target list prices for the iBox/SBC server start at less than $2,000. First shipments are scheduled for August 2000.
LHS Group LHS Established as the #1 Performance Leader in Wireless Billing & Rating Benchmark:- 50M Subscriber Capability in a Single System

ATLANTA/FRANKFURT, May 23, 2000 - LHS Group Inc. and Sun Microsystems Inc. established a new standard in performance for the telecommunications industry. In a recent benchmark, LHS' BSCS software, running on a Sun Enterprise 10000 server (also known as Starfire server), proved the capability to handle transaction volumes and customer information for 50 million subscribers - a higher volume workload than any other client server CC&B system for the communications industry.

Running a standard main release, BSCS rating processed 138 million call detail records (CDRs) per hour using a single Starfire server. The system also achieved a sustained rated call record in Bill Processing, by processing 51 million rated calls per hour. Bill preparations were accomplished at 900,000 per hour from a single server.

The benchmark environment reflects typical production conditions for a large wireless communications carrier, based on a representative mix of corporate, business and residential subscribers. The Starfire server demonstrated 99% utilization across 64 CPUs. The BSCS software and Starfire server platform demonstrate linear scalability and prove the system processing overall capacity and ability to accommodate very large databases and mixed workloads. The benchmark environment, running BSCS, Oracle 8.06 and Solaris 7 Operating Environment, was configured with 64 UltraSPARC II 400 MHZ CPUs. The tests were conducted at Sun's Large Scale Benchmark Center in Geneva, Switzerland.
Robert Frances Group High-End Unix Systems Overpowering IBM Mainframes, According to New Research From Robert Frances Group

WESTPORT, Conn.- (BUSINESS WIRE) - May 23, 2000 - RFG. New, large, powerful Unix systems are threatening IBM and its mainframes, just as PCs, local area networks (LANs) and the Internet did in years past. As the business world moves increasingly to e-commerce, such enterprise-class Unix systems are increasingly surrounding and supplanting IBM's venerated mainframes, according to new research published today by the Robert Frances Group (RFG).

In its new Research Note "The Duel for Data Center Dominance," RFG, said that IBM still owns the lion's share of the market for installed mainframes. However, in just the past two years, the company has ceded supremacy in the enterprise data center and traditional mainframe spaces to the major Unix vendors -- and IBM apparently fails to grasp the nature and seriousness of the challenges, RFG said. While IBM's installed base is still the largest by many measures, shipments of mainframe-class platforms appear to be growing significantly faster for HP, Sun and other Unix vendors than for IBM. RFG cites information from sources within IBM itself, as well as from Sun and other public sources, to show that enterprise customers are increasingly running mainframe-class enterprise applications on high-end Unix servers.

"Once again, IBM has lost its grip on a stronghold," said Cal Braunstein, Chairman/CEO and Director of Research at RFG. "What makes it so incredible is that this time it is in the one area that no one thought IBM would ever lose -- the mainframe server market. As e-commerce becomes a more established facet of business, Sun has beaten IBM at its own game by surrounding and outmaneuvering Big Blue in the enterprise data center."

Editor's note:- no surprise here, for many I think, but it does look like an interesting site, which is why I included the news item. First IBM lost the PC market to Compaq, then the minicomputer market to DEC, which lost it in turn to Sun, and now the mainframe. These things take time. But who's going to be the winner in the even bigger storage market?Personally I think none of the above, but we might have to wait a few more years to see.
Cisco Systems Cisco Systems Unveils New Internet Communications Software Group

SAN JOSE, Calif., May 23, 2000 - Cisco Systems, Inc. formally introduced the Internet Communications Software Group (ICSG) chartered to lead Cisco's software strategy. The group delivers software platforms that enable enterprises, service providers and application vendors to realize the full potential of converged voice and data networks. Cisco also today announced an end-to-end strategy for the delivery of these software platforms to market through consultant and systems integrators, resellers and Application Service Providers (ASPs), and outsourcers.

Today's contact center infrastructure resembles a series of stove piped environments supporting specific contact channels. Customers need unified software platforms that can converge and blend all media types, coupled with comprehensive legacy system integration capabilities. Cisco's approach is to build on the strength of its data and voice networking solutions, to break down the barriers that separate the traditional voice network from the growing Internet data networks.

A typical unified communications service bundle includes unified messaging, single number reach with integrated call screening and priority notification, coupled with call-back sender capabilities. In unified communications, Cisco's ecosystem of technology providers deliver best-of-breed solutions and support and help provide customers with key differentiators in their respective markets. In the unified messaging arena, technology providers include HP, Sun Microsystems/iPlanet and Software.com. ISVs include Nuance for speech recognition, Lernout & Hauspie (L&H) for text/speech conversion technologies and OpenPort for high volume fax applications. - more info -
Red Hat Red Hat, Inc. Chooses DigitalThink to Build E-Learning Curriculum

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. and SAN FRANCISCO - (BUSINESS WIRE) - May 23, 2000 - Red Hat, Inc. announced today that it has partnered with e-learning pioneer DigitalThink to deliver Red Hat's leading Red Hat Linux training and certification over the Web.

Under the agreement, Red Hat will collaborate with DigitalThink to develop a suite of e-learning offerings that will prepare individuals anywhere in the world to take the Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE) exam.
NSI® Software NSI Software and Data General Partner on High-Availability

HOBOKEN, NJ., May 22, 2000 - NSI® Software, developers of the award-winning Double-Take® and GeoCluster™ data replication software, announced today a partnership with Data General, a Division of EMC Corporation, to deliver high-availability system solutions. Double-Take, when combined with Data General's rackmount AViiON servers and clustering solutions, enable unprecedented levels of data availability and advanced performance. The new suite of products includes NSI Software's Double-Take data replication technology and GeoCluster™ distance clustering. Data General will resell these products to complement its existing high availability solutions portfolio.

NSI Software's Double-Take provides real-time data protection and replication to reduce data loss and downtime, while enhancing the performance of existing backup applications. Double-Take monitors file changes as they occur on one or many source servers, replicating them in real-time to a target server over existing network links.

Established in 1991, NSI® Software is a privately funded developer of data protection and availability solutions. Double-Take® is a real-time data replication system for Windows 2000 / NT, Solaris and NetWare that reduces downtime and data loss, allows for centralized backup, and can be used to provide offsite disaster recovery. ...NSI® Software profile
EVSX EVSX Announces Name Change and Technology Focus

Austin, TX - May 22, 2000 — EVSX, Inc., an Austin-based semiconductor technology developer of circuit and EDA technology, today announced it has changed its name to Intrinsity, Inc. The company, which over the last three years has operated through funding from an undisclosed partner, also provided more details about its technology for ultra-fast microprocessors. The technology, which is developed in the company's own Linux-based EDA environment, is able to yield power-efficient circuits that operate at three times the speed of conventional designs and to achieve the highest performance per unit of silicon. It uses standard CMOS processes and is currently being utilized to develop a product for a major semiconductor supplier. Intrinsity will make the technology available to select suppliers through design services partnerships and intellectual property licensing, and will also use it to develop the company's own products.

Paul Nixon, Intrinsity's CEO and a member of the company's founding team, emphasized that while more details about the technology couldn't be disclosed, its potential impact on future microprocessor design was one of the motivators for the name change. "We chose "Intrinsity" because it best reflects the intrinsic nature of this powerful technology, as well as the design team's expertise in developing high performance semiconductor products," said Nixon.

Nixon also emphasized the impressive breadth of the team's experience. "Our engineering team has over eight centuries of design and engineering experience. This includes actually bringing product to market for almost every major microprocessor introduced in the last decade." Those architectures, explained Nixon, include Power, PowerPC, x86, MIPS, SPARC, in addition to others. The company does plan on utilizing its technology to develop its own products, as well.

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