Feeds

Sun slashes Solaris x86 price for big buyers

OS alive and cheap

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

Sun Microsystems has taken another step toward turning the once forgotten Solaris x86 operating system into a money making venture with a new pricing scheme designed to attract Opteron and Xeon server customers to the software.

Sun has started a volume licensing plan for Solaris x86 that includes discounts when customers buy the OS in 100, 500 or 2,000 units. The new pricing requires an annual payment that ranges from $50,000 (100 servers) to $800,000 (2,000 servers), including support. One of the biggest benefits from the plan is that customers pay the same price regardless of how many processors their servers have - up to 4 CPUs per machine.

"This promotion makes Solaris the most competitively priced OS on x86 systems and will be attractive to both existing Solaris customers that are heavily invested in Sun's OS, as well as new customers that may have been on the fence before," said John Loiacono, Sun's software chief.

Customers buying UltraSPARC-based servers traditionally receive Solaris at no charge. By contrast, Sun sells Solaris x86 for Opteron and Xeon servers for $250 on a two processor server, $1,500 on a four processor box and $2,500 on an 8 processor box. Support costs then range from $500 to $1,000 depending on the size of the server and type of support.

So for 1,500 two-way boxes and 500 four-way boxes, customers would pay $1,125,000 in license costs alone.

Sun figures a Red Hat Enterprise Linux customer would pay $1.6m for 2,000 subscriptions and standard support and be prohibited from running the OS on four processor boxes. A Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition customer would pay $4.4m, according to Sun.

As stated before, Sun's new plan would bring the price for a similar packaged down to $800,000.

Sun's attempt at unconventional software pricing is not new. The company has been offering its Java Enterprise System (JES) stack of software for $100 per employee to large companies and its desktop OS for $50 per employee.

The Solaris x86 pricing appears to be another attempt to spur the adoption of otherwise not terribly popular software. (It wasn't long ago that Sun shelved the OS all together.) Sun does have more than 850,000 registered licenses of Solaris x86, but many of these are simply for test machines or university customers.

Sun is hoping that Solaris x86 becomes the standard Unix option on x86 boxes. Sun argues that the OS is more mature and secure than either Linux or Windows. Promoting the OS also fits in well with Sun's newfound love for the Opteron processor, giving Sun a direct channel to push Solaris into new markets. ®

Related stories

Sun offers a hand to confused HP-UX customers
Sun starts Solaris 10 salutations
Sun finally ships StarOffice for Solaris x86
Sun sets Solaris x86 free
Sun ready to link Solaris x86 boxes into the SAN
Sun's Solaris x86 customers see the light of day

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Kingston DataTraveler MicroDuo: Turn your phone into a 72GB beast
USB-usiness in the front, micro-USB party in the back
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
BOFH: Oh DO tell us what you think. *CLICK*
$%%&amp Oh dear, we've been cut *CLICK* Well hello *CLICK* You're breaking up...
AMD's 'Seattle' 64-bit ARM server chips now sampling, set to launch in late 2014
But they won't appear in SeaMicro Fabric Compute Systems anytime soon
Amazon reveals its Google-killing 'R3' server instances
A mega-memory instance that never forgets
Cisco reps flog Whiptail's Invicta arrays against EMC and Pure
Storage reseller report reveals who's selling what
Microsoft builds teleporter weapon to send VMware into Azure
Updated Virtual Machine Converter now converts Linux VMs too
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.