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Sun Microsystems had added five new PC makers to its list of Java supporters, as the company continues it attempt to secure the software on the desktop.

Acer, Gateway, Toshiba, Samsung and Tsinghua Tongfang are the latest OEMs agreeing to ship Sun's JVM with their computers. This group joins Dell, HP and Apple, which signed deals earlier in the year. Sun now claims to have close to 50 per cent of the PC market Java-enabled.

Sun's push to attract PC makers to Java comes as a result of Microsoft's refusal to ship the software. Microsoft pulled Java out of its Windows XP shipments earlier this year.

Given the widespread use of Java on Web sites, Microsoft's stance here seems to go against its "we listen to the user" claims. Sun and Microsoft are fierce enemies, but if the folks in Redmond were truly concerned about the end user experience, they would bite the bullet and ship the Java code.

Sun executives suggest that the OEMs reached a breaking point in their Java support. It took a while for them to go against Microsoft's wishes but once a couple of major PC makers - i.e. HP and Dell - signed on, the path was cleared for the rest of the crew. Expect Sony to follow suit in due course. ®

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