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SPARC History - 2005, August

See also:- Solaris Training
Solaris Migration
Surviving the Solaris x86 Wars
Overview of the Notebook SSD Market
the Last Market Report on Sun Compatible OEMs?
Why Sun Should Acquire a Solid State Disk Company
the Benefits of SAS (Serial Attached SCSI) for External Subsystems
Hardware Upgrades to Make Your Sun SPARC Server Go Faster

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Sun, SPARC, Solaris Market news other news on this page
StorageTek Stockholders Approve Acquisition by Sun
LOUISVILLE, Colo.- August 30, 2005 - StorageTek stockholders today voted to approve the acquisition agreement between StorageTek and Sun Microsystems.

Under the terms of the agreement, StorageTek will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Sun Microsystems upon the closing of the proposed transaction. StorageTek announced that preliminary results showed that 99.2% of the shares voted approved the Sun acquisition of StorageTek. StorageTek and Sun Microsystems expect to complete the acquisition at 4:01 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2005, at which time trading in StorageTek common stock will be suspended. ...Sun profile, ...StorageTek profile, Acquired companies, SPARC history


HP Outshines Sun in Linux and midrange Unix Server Sales

PALO ALTO, Calif. - August 26, 2005 - HP demonstrated strong server revenue growth and was the #1 vendor in worldwide server shipments for the 13th consecutive quarter, according to second quarter 2005 figures released today by IDC.

In total server revenue, HP grew twice as fast as the market and took market share from IBM and Sun. HP was #1 in total worldwide revenue for the three major operating environments of Windows, Linux and UNIX combined, which comprise more than 95% of all servers shipped worldwide.

Additionally, HP had strong year-over-year revenue growth compared to the market for x86 servers (17.6%), x86 blade servers (120.6%) and Intel Itanium 2 based servers (85.6%).

  • HP was #1 in total Linux revenue and held the top spot in x86 Linux server revenue.
  • In Windows x86 servers, HP maintained its #1 position in units and revenue and outpaced the market year-over-year in revenue.
  • HP was #1 in total worldwide revenue and maintained its #1 server unit position for UNIX mid-range servers between $25,000 and $500,000 - the largest segment of the UNIX marketplace.
  • In x86-64 servers, HP holds nearly double the unit and revenue share of the next largest vendor of Opteron-based servers.
...HP profile, ...Sun profile, ...IDC profile, Market research, Sun, SPARC, Solaris news

Editor's comments:- This report suggests that HP is thrashing Sun Microsystems soundly in what used to be Sun's core market - Unix servers. But when Sun issues its own version of this market report it will say something positive and upbeat but hedged around with a narrow qualifying statement - such as - "Sun outgrew IBM and HP in the mid range Solaris market". Sun has always managed to come up with an upbeat assessment - even in the darkest days when its server revenue halved. But Sun is transitioning to be a top 10 storage company so its battle in servers may be lost to HP but there's a new war brewing for the (bigger) storage market.

...Later:- as anticapted Sun later reported much more favorable numbers from rival market research company Gartner - which showed Sun in a better light. Buying opinions from market analysts is no different to buying other fashion goods - "you pays yer money and you takes yer choice."



AMD Challenges Intel To A Dual-Core Duel

SUNNYVALE, CA - August 23, 2005 - AMD today issued a challenge to Intel to conduct a head-to-head competition of dual-core x86 server processors.

AMD's proposed dual-core duel in 2005 would be a live, public performance evaluation between server platforms based on the highest-performing Dual-Core AMD Opteron 800 Series or 200 Series processors and the corresponding Intel x86 server processors that are commercially available in volume.

The challenge, issued today in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, San Jose Mercury News and The San Francisco Chronicle, features the world's first x86 dual-core server microprocessor, the Dual-Core AMD Opteron processor, in a boxing ring waiting for the Intel challenger. AMD has challenged Intel to settle the question once and for all - whose x86-based dual-core architecture best meets server customer's needs.

"Since we launched Dual-Core AMD Opteron processors in April 2005, we've won every major industry-standard benchmark for x86 servers. AMD64 dual-core technology provides industry-leading performance, is easy to upgrade and is energy efficient," said Marty Seyer, corporate vice president and general manager, Microprocessor Solutions Sector, AMD. "We are giving our competitor a fair and open opportunity to challenge our clear market leadership in a public setting. A head-to-head match using industry-standard benchmarks will arm customers with the information necessary to determine which company can best meet their computing needs. The gauntlet has been thrown down, it is time to cut through the hype, and demonstrate who the industry's leader in x86 dual-core processing is today."

Should Intel accept AMD's challenge, the duel would take place at a public venue to be announced in the coming weeks, with testing conducted by a neutral, third-party testing lab. Testing would be done using industry-standard server benchmarks most relevant to customers today such as SPECjbb and SPECweb Measurement on energy consumption would also be conducted. ...AMD profile, ...Intel profile

Editor's comments:- this is a clever marketing strategy whose real purpose is to influence end users who are responsible for buying servers. By making them ask the question - is AMD faster? - AMD is hoping to undermine billions of dollars spent on Intel branding programs. AMD gains whether or not Intel chooses to accept the challenge. Merely asking the question is enough to sow the seeds of doubt.

Why isn't AMD issuing the same challenge to Sun - regarding its SPARC chips? Sun is an important customer - whom AMD would not wish to offend. And there's not a great queue of OEMs lining up to design in SPARC ships intsead of Opterons.



UK Sun VAR PCS Dons Red Hat

London - August 23, 2005 - Red Hat, Inc. today announced the appointment of Productivity Computer Services Ltd as its newest Advanced Partner in Europe.

By awarding the accreditation to PCS, the UK reseller will be able to offer high performing Linux based solutions to its customers more easily, helping them to take full advantage of the cost benefits associated with streamlined operating systems.

PCS offers grid computing solutions encompassing Oracle 10g and Red Hat Enterprise Linux on the Sun AMD hardware platform. With a proven open source solution and an extensive pool of locally based certified Red Hat engineers, PCS is now one of the leading providers of Red Hat solutions from concept and design through to implementation and support. By implementing open source infrastructure solutions, the new Red Hat partner is able to bring high availability and shared storage technologies to bear as valuable components of the software application solution stack, bringing further business efficiency to clients.

"As one of the largest Sun Specialist Resellers in the UK, our Red Hat certification is a natural extension of our capabilities, complimenting our existing Enterprise UNIX client base" said Mike Phillipson, Northern Region Sales Manager for PCS. ...Red Hat profile, ...PCS profile, SPARC ISVs, backup software, Sun VARs in the UK


SPARC Notebook Maker Tadpole Computer is Acquired

FALLS CHURCH, Va. - August 16, 2005 - General Dynamics today acquired Tadpole Computer, Inc., a privately held company based in Cupertino, Calif., that provides Unix based mobile, secure and battlefield-tested computing platforms for mission-critical military, government and commercial operations.

The acquisition will be immediately accretive to General Dynamics. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. Tadpole Computer, which has approximately 60 employees, will become part of General Dynamics C4 Systems, a business unit of General Dynamics. ...Tadpole Computer profile, ...General Dynamics profile, SPARC Notebooks, military SPARC systems

Editor's comments:-
it became clear to me months ago that Tadpole was hoping to be acquired by someone. I was going to write an article about it - but was beaten by events and the demands of my summer vacation:-)

Tadpole was the first company to make SPARC notebooks in the early 1990s. But in my view the company made a serious business mistake in recent years by investing too much resources into making headway in the Intel Architecture notebook market. A market in which price and marketing count for much more than technology. Tadpole, under different ownership, had nearly crashed and burned in the mid 1990s with a similar venture into the PC market which is a lot tougher to survive in than the SPARC market.

More recently, superior SPARC notebooks from Naturetech were creating severe pressure on profit margins in this segment. Sun resells products from both these companies - but in the last year Tadpole had virtually given up promoting its own brand by PR and advertising and was exposed to the vagaries of demand from its single biggest customer. The acquisition from General Dynamics will secure Tadpole's product range for government customers, but my guess is that commercial customers should now turn their attention to Naturetech and its VARs which supply more diverse markets.


3PAR Delivers Bare-Metal Provisioning for Solaris Servers

Fremont, CA, US - August 15, 2005 - 3PAR announced today Bare-Metal Provisioning for Solaris-based servers.

Built upon 3PAR Virtual Copy and 3PAR InServ Storage Servers, 3PAR's Bare-Metal Provisioning empowers users to deploy Solaris-based servers more rapidly, while managing server farms more simply and efficiently.

Solaris is a strategic platform of choice for many enterprises with mission-critical environments, where reduced time to deployment and recovery are crucial. Yet the processes of adding new or repurposing existing servers, restoring failed servers and upgrading server software still involve time-intensive and error-prone steps of first loading and configuring the operating system, and then installing application software on each server. The greater the number of servers, the more pronounced the time and effort required.

3PAR's Bare-Metal Provisioning drastically improves the time-to-market of Solaris server deployments-from bare metal to a functioning server-taking just a few minutes instead of days or weeks to implement with traditional approaches. Using 3PAR Virtual Copy, a software utility that makes hundreds of no-reservation read/write copies within a single 3PAR InServ Storage Server, customers can centrally store and test read-only "golden images" of the Solaris operating system and associated applications. Then, as business demand dictates, users can instantly provision a Solaris host from a read/write Virtual Copy of the appropriate golden image, simplifying and streamlining the process. In the event of a server failure, the replacement server simply points to the failed server's operating system and application image and is immediately brought online. ...3PARdata profile, Data Recovery, article:- Surviving the Solaris x86 Wars


New e-Learning Course for Sun StorEdge 6130

August 15, 2005 - Engenio Information Technologies, Inc., today announced the availability of a new e-Learning course, Engenio 2882 with SANtricity 9: Installation & Configuration, which was designed by the company for the benefit of its worldwide partners.

Sun Microsystems, an Engenio partner, is making a customised version of the e-Learning class available to its employees and customers. The course is designed to teach partners and end-user customers the proper procedures and techniques for installing, configuring and maintaining an Engenio 2882 array, which Sun resells as the Sun StorEdge 6130 system. Students who take the course will learn through interactive simulations and are taught how to set up a new storage array, starting with the pre-planning process and concluding with suggestions for post-installation maintenance. Course topics include: an overview of storage terminology, installing the hardware and configuring the system software. ...Engenio profile, Storage Training


Cambex Becomes Sun iForce Partner

WESTBOROUGH, Mass - August 10, 2005 - Cambex Corp today announced that it has joined Sun Microsystems iForce Partner Program.

As part of their iForce partnership, Cambex and Sun will deliver mainframe rehosting solutions and services on SPARC based Sun Fire servers to enterprise customers.

Migrating mainframe applications to Sun open systems servers has reduced annual hardware and software costs by as much as 75%. Typical return on investment is less than 24 months while customers benefit from greater flexibility, scalability and often performance.

Cambex and Sun possess the experience, software tools and expertise to migrate business-critical applications from mainframes onto the Sun Fire server line. With rehosting, the front-end of the applications are unchanged allowing customers to use their software without requiring any additional training.

"Cambex has over 35 years of experience working with enterprise mainframe customers" said Joseph F. Kruy, Chairman and CEO of Cambex. "We are confident that by working with an industry leader like Sun, we can significantly reduce the total cost of ownership of running a customer's business-critical applications by migrating these applications from IBM mainframes to highly-reliable Sun servers." ...Cambex profile, RAM

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StorageTek Stockholders Approve Acquisition by Sun

HP Outshines Sun in Server Revenue Growth

AMD Challenges Intel To A Dual-Core Duel

UK Sun VAR Gets Red Hat Accreditation

SPARC Notebook Maker Tadpole is Acquired

3PAR Delivers Bare-Metal Provisioning for Solaris

New e-Learning Course for Sun StorEdge 6130

Cambex Becomes Sun iForce Partner

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2005 Market Report on Sun Compatible OEMs
in the SPARC Product Directory

T
his article reviews the history of Sun's relationships with Sun compatible hardware OEMs and chronicles the 3 great culls of SPARC compatible OEMs.

The article also analyzes emerging new trends and strategic growth markets for Sun partners in 2005. ...read the article

3rd Party RAM,, article by Keystone Memory
3rd Party RAM, Your Rights on Server Warranties - article by Keystone Memory

Users know that memory and hard disk drives aren't made by most of the companies from whom they buy their servers, notebooks and desktops. But they are often intimidated from competitively buying 3rd party upgrades by sales tactics aimed at locking them in to a single source. Such tactics often hint that maintenance contracts and warranties will be void or negatively impacted by the presence of 3rd party upgrade products.

That kind of anti competitive pressure is illegal in many countries.

This article provides an overview of the legal protection that users may have under a US law called Magnuson and Moss. ...read the article, ...Keystone Memory profile, US Storage VARs

click here to read article by Association of Storage Networking Professionals click for profile
Privacy and Security Regulations - How Do they Impact Storage Systems? - article by ASNP

What are the legal regulations covering the type of storage system, backup and disaster recovery and encryption mandated for companies operating in the US?

This article answers those questions and is a sound starting point for anyone having the duty of care and responsibility for their corporate data. Because regulations change so quickly it's worth considering the impact of these best practises on your own organisation even if you think you are currently outside the scope of these laws. That will reduce the level of panic when they creep up on you. ...read the article,, ...ASNP profile, Backup software, Disk to disk backup, Optical Storage Libraries, Tape libraries, Web based storage

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Serial Attached SCSI - Delivering Flexibility to the Data Center - article by LSI Logic and Maxtor

"SAS gains a performance advantage through its support of multiple initiators, or the ability to support I/O requests from more than one controller at a time. With dual ports and multiple initiator support, SAS RAID arrays can implement dynamic load balancing, allowing I/O requests to be evenly spread across multiple controllers, leveraging the full processing power of all of them. Without this capability, the I/O requests can become skewed, and overload one controller, while the others may not be at full capacity. SATA technology does not support this capability."

...read the article, ...LSI Logic profile, ...Maxtor profile, Serial Attached SCSI


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War of the Disks: Hard Disk Drives vs. Flash Solid State Disks - Despatches from the Magneto / Flash Wars - article by BiTMICRO

BiTMICRO is the #1 best recognised brand of SSDs (source STORAGEsearch.com SSD Survey) and they have published a lot of articles to help customers understand the benefits of their products. When I first saw the submission for this article I was pleased to see that it quoted extracts from and linked to several other articles that I myself had written or edited - so that gave me a warm glow.

After years of analyzing this market SSD vendors and analysts are starting to see some clear patterns emerging. Although opinions still differ on some subjects, and vendors are prone to pitch their own solutions as best, this article is a useful synthesis of current industry thinking by one of the leading flash SSD module manufacturers. ...read the article, ...BiTMICRO Networks profile, Solid State Disks, Hard disk drives
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