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News about SPARC systems and related companies

2001, September week 3

CCPU High Availability/High Density Compute Platform
High Availability SPARC servers
from Continuous Computing
See also:- article:- Solid State Disks - a $10 Billion Market in 2007?
Squeak! - the Fastest Growing storage companies
article:- Storage Software Tools for Defense Systems Integrators
Squeak! - the 10 biggest storage companies
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Storage Expo
"Suddenly the focus in storage has changed," says Chris Atkins, storage marketing manager for Sun Microsystems (UK).

Weybridge, UK, September 20, 2001 - In the UK at least, one area of IT expenditure is bucking the downward trend. Storage, once a peripheral consideration for IT departments, is now taking centre stage as the hardware, networks and management time involved in saving and retrieving information gobble up an increasing slice of corporate IT budgets.

Giles Mallon, event director, Storage Expo, says, "We estimate that 4 out of 5 storage projects are borne out of necessity so despite the fact that IT budgets are getting slashed, storage projects simply can't get postponed because companies are already suffering the effects of downtime stemming from information overload. Storage is very much a here and now issue - it has made the leap of not only getting onto the boardroom agenda but getting to the top of the agenda, underlined in red."

"Suddenly the focus in storage has changed," says Chris Atkins, storage marketing manager for Sun Microsystems. "Five years ago IT directors were spending 20% of their budgets on storage, now its 40% to 50%. How do I get storage costs back into focus? Is the question they are asking. IT budgets are shrinking and storage costs are eating into applications. The high costs prevent users from exploiting new technologies. Sun is taking a lead on standards. We believe that if you go off on your own it's not going to work."

"Storage can account for 75% of IT spend," says Martin Warren, product marketing manager for StorageTek, once you add up the cost of disc, tape and peripheral devices, plus the bridges and routers required in networks and the bills for software and management. "This year," says Warren, "the value of storage sales will overtake that of servers for the first time."

"The amount of interest in Storage Expo is huge because companies both big and small see the pressing need to make their information safe, accessible and agile. At the same time they don't want storage costs to spiral out of control, so decisions have to be made carefully," says Giles Mallon from Storage Expo.

"According to University of California at Berkeley, world data will double over the next two and a half years and the personal terabyte will be with us by 2005. Given these statistics, clearly we will need new paradigms to deal with the quantity of data out there," says Dr Guy Bunker, Chief Scientist at VERITAS Software. "Availability will continue to be the watchword - if the data isn't there, then it doesn't matter how much hardware you throw at the problem, it won't help. Flexible software solutions that can evolve as the company's applications do will be the way forward."

Ensuring that your company has a fast, reliable storage service will remain a top priority for your IT department and one that will require considerable thought and intelligent decision making. Storage Expo takes place at the NEC in Birmingham, England on October 17 & 18, There are a series of free seminars taking place during the exhibition and the Gartner storage conference runs in conjunction with the event....Storage Expo web site

Editor's comments:- although the IT recession as a result of the dotcom meltdown started to affect US companies as long as 12 months ago, and some European countries like Germany earlier this year, the UK IT market has, until recently, still been growing. In the summer months everything grinds to a halt in Europe because of the long vacations , even when the economy is booming, so maybe the signs of a slowdown have been less visible, but UK storage vendors still seem to be upbeat about the future.
"Suddenly the focus in storage has changed," says Chris Atkins, storage marketing manager for Sun Microsystems (UK).

Fujitsu Technology Solutions Announces Grand Opening of Enterprise Solutions Test and Integration Lab and Corporate Briefing Center

Sun Increases Application Uptime and Return on Storage Investment for Oracle Customers

DRS Technologies Receives New Orders from the U.S. Army for Second Generation Infrared Sighting Systems

earlier news - archive
Squeaks-a-Bit's list of classic computer sites
Classic Computer Sites on
Megabyte's ancestor, Squeaks-a-Bit, had created a list of classic hits from before the Millenium. He didn't say which millenium .
Nibble:- Re SPARC mainframes

As a long term stakeholder in the Sun market (10 years of publishing in October 2001 to be precise) we welcome the long overdue Sun Fire 15K. Make no mistake, you're going to see a lot more architectural changes in servers during the next year, and this box should probably be viewed as a transitional product. But that doesn't really matter today if you're desperate to have a box running your Solaris applications faster. And let's be honest, there isn't really a lot of choice.

In the 1990's Sun demolished nearly all competition in the SPARC mainframe market. The first to get crushed was Solbourne, which had shipped the first multiprocessor SPARC servers using its own design of SPARC ships.

About 5 years later Auspex Systems decided that competing with Sun using Sun developed chips and their operating system, was a game not worth the candle, so in the mid 1990's they switched to Intel technology and waited another 5 years before the market recognised the Auspex products for what they really were:- the world's first NAS systems.

Cray Computer also discovered, that competing against SPARC mainframes from Sun, which they had originally helped to design, was an unprofitable business. They exited the SPARC market after a few lean years, although they're still a Sun reseller today.

In the early days of the SPARC mainframe market, it was convenient for Sun to maintain the myth of a competitive market which was binary compatible. But the reality is that Sun didn't want to share this market with anyone. Fujitsu has had various failed attempts to get market share from the Sun customer base, but their excellent products in the past have always been let down by incompetent marketing.

Just like the IBM mainframe market originally attracted a bunch of compatible rivals, most of which have since disappeared, we expect that the SPARC mainframe market will consist of just one company:- Sun. If you buy anything else you're probably making a big mistake.

The real competition in the SPARC mainframe market is in the applications areas where customers can use rackmount SPARC systems. That's a market segment in which Sun is not even the market leader and product announcements come in at a much faster pace.

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Fujitsu Technology Solutions
Fujitsu Technology Solutions Announces Grand Opening of Enterprise Solutions Test and Integration Lab and Corporate Briefing Center

Sunnyvale, Calif., Sept. 18, 2001 – Fujitsu Technology Solutions, Inc. today announced the grand opening of the Fujitsu North American Competency Center, strategically located in the heart of the Silicon Valley. This 12,000 square foot, $5-million facility was built to house a major state-of-the-art enterprise solutions development and test center. The Competency Center enables Fujitsu Technology Solutions' customers to replicate their installations in a low-risk environment, so they can see first-hand how solutions will perform when battle-tested.

Competency Center engineers verify proof-of-concept solutions by demonstrating interoperability between Fujitsu Technology Solutions' products with those of independent software and hardware vendors to deliver the best performance and availability for the customer environment.

Central to the Competency Center are Solaris compatible PRIMEPOWER servers which the company claims are the highest-capacity commercial UNIX servers in the marketplace. The center combines these servers with leading technology such as EMC storage; Veritas cluster software, Brocade Communications and McData Corporation fibre switches, HBAs from JNI, QLogic, and Emulex; and a wide variety of components from other vendors. ...Fujitsu Technology Solutions profile
Sun Microsystems Sun Increases Application Uptime and Return on Storage Investment for Oracle Customers

PALO ALTO, CA - September 18, 2001 - Sun Microsystems, Inc., today announced Sun HighGround[tm] Storage Resource Manager (SRM) Version 5.0, delivering improved application uptime and return on investment to both Oracle and Sybase customers. The new software builds on the Company's web-based storage resource management application that provides IT managers with critical utilization, consumption and availability data about their enterprise storage. In addition to now incorporating Oracle and Sybase database storage resources, the new software provides consolidated views and alerts of global servers, making it even easier and more effective for Sun's customers.

Over half the storage within corporations today consists of databases for mission-critical applications. By implementing Sun HighGround SRM Version 5.0, Sun's customers have a centralized view of these distributed databases. As a result of improved capacity management and planning, customers gain greater efficiencies, enhanced service levels, and a greater return on investment.

"Storage capacity shortages are one of the leading causes of unplanned downtime," says Doug Kennedy, vice president, Global Partnerships, Oracle Corporation. "Customers with fast growing databases are the most likely to experience this downtime, and could clearly benefit from the automated monitoring and alerting the Sun HighGround SRM software offers."

Pricing and Availability:- Sun HighGround SRM 5.0 is available now. Pricing for Sun HighGround SRM products is calculated on a per-managed-element basis; pricing starts at $1,000 per managed element. ...Sun Microsystems profile

See also:- Backup software, HSM & SRM
DRS Technologies DRS Technologies Receives New Orders from the U.S. Army for Second Generation Infrared Sighting Systems

Parsippany, NJ, September 18 - DRS Technologies, Inc.announced today that it has received new awards from the U.S. Army to provide spare Horizontal Technology Integration Second Generation Forward Looking Infrared (HTI SGF) sighting systems. These systems provide critical common night vision technology and will be installed on the Abrams M1A2 Main Battle Tank System Enhancement Package (SEP) and the Bradley M2A3 Fighting Vehicles.

The orders, with a combined value of approximately $5.4 million, were awarded by the U.S. Army's Communications-Electronics Command (CECOM) in Fort Monmouth, New Jersey. Work associated with these contracts will be accomplished by the company's DRS Sensor Systems unit in Torrance, California and DRS Optronics unit in Palm Bay, Florida.

"The HTI initiative is central to the Army's modernization strategy for the digitization of the 21st century battlefield and contributes significantly to the power projection capabilities of ground forces," said Mark S. Newman, DRS Technologies' chairman, president and chief executive officer. ...DRS Technologies profile
DoveBid 7th in a series of Major Dot-Com Exchange Auctions

Editor's notes:- September 14, 2001 - I came across the 6th auction from DoveBid too late to feature yesterday's liquidation of assets of HAL Computer Systems (Fujitsu's earlier failed attempt to take Sun on head to head in the SPARC workstation market).

Looking ahead to September 20, 2001, DoveBid will be running their next auction from Eatontown, NJ and via webcast, selling assets from from, Prism, & Microcast.

Recycling Sun servers and Cisco routers from failed dot-coms is a good business apparently, DoveBid reported 500% year on year growth in Q1 this year. When the trickle of new and almost unused products from the failed dot-coms dries out, there will be a sigh of relief from most Sun resellers who still have to compete with all that churned around product during a recession which is difficult enough already. ...DoveBid profile

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