Four years and 1000 promises land Solaris at Dell
Waiting for HP
SC07 By our count, it has taken Sun about four years and 1,000s of promises to bring Dell over to the Solaris camp in a proper fashion.
Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz assured us of a Dell win so many times in the past that the discussion started to lose all meaning. "When will you line Dell up?" we'd ask. "Stay tuned. It's on the way," Schwartz would reply.
But here we are and Sun has indeed captured the Roundest Rock. Dell joins IBM as a company that can pre-bundle Solaris on its machines. In addition, both Dell and IBM can sell support for Solaris or let Sun do the dirty work.
This is a funny turn of events if you've followed the Solaris x86 saga.
In the old days, Compaq was the largest non-Sun consumer of Solaris x86. After the merger, HP ignored Solaris for awhile but then actually started certifying the OS on all of its latest and greatest servers. HP still does this today, although it now stands as the lone Tier 1 that cannot officially support Solaris.
Shouldn't HP have been the first to give Solaris the service squeeze?
"That would have been what we thought also," Sun's server and storage chief John Fowler told us today at the Supercomputing conference. "We would love it if they did."
Dell has supported Solaris in the past, although it relied on a "when requested" as opposed to "direct" model. Customers would need to place a special order for the OS.
But now we're talking about a co-marketing, co-selling type arrangement. In addition, Sun and Dell say they will craft products together that include software bundles from third parties.
We're dismayed that given this positive step to a concrete deal, Schwartz would resort back to his familiar lines.
"This is going to be the first of many such agreements between the two companies," Schwartz told Reuters. "I would stay tuned in the next 30 to 60 days." ®
Register editor Ashlee Vance has just pumped out a new book that's a guide to Silicon Valley. The book starts with the electronics pioneers present in the Bay Area in the early 20th century and marches up to today's heavies. Want to know where Gordon Moore eats Chinese food, how unions affected the rise of microprocessors or how Fairchild Semiconductor got its start? This is the book for you - available at Amazon US here or in the UK here.
relatively (ir)relevant, then ?
Ah, the OS-es.... always good for a laugh and a fight..... Frankly, I did them all, or at least a fair share of them, and got all the t-shirts. (linux,aix, solaris,vms,os2,winnt, a bit of novell and <......>)
I find it very irrelevant which one you favor most. I think the point is, what are you trying to achieve and how much green can you spend ?
For example..... ;-)
I know linux for what it is good at: webservers, maybe some java and currently my AMD X2 desktop. ( multimedia, sound recording, satellite tv-watching, productivity apps, the works). The system mgmt interface on e.g. SuSe is an example of how to do it. A medium / small business might very well run its entire IT on it, and never be sorry about it. It won't run your 6000-session website, though, unless you favour to have 200 servers, 10 admins and the space to put them in...... Linux is there, and it will grow, because it caters a need.
By it's shear market-share and it did force all the unixes to standardize on API interfaces, which is good; today you can run linux-bread software on any unix you ever heard about...... and the other way around.....
Solaris is solid on all kinds of server-tasks. However, I would not dream of having it on my desktop, because I will end up re-compiling linux software to get stuff to work; it does lack menu driven admin interfaces, though. which makes it a costly affair to train people for it... most young kids today aren't interested in typing arcane commands, and some day they will have to take over.......
AIX is solid for all kinds of server-tasks, just like solaris; the big bonus is that you get the fastest hardware on the planet and a day2day system mgmt interface that is easy to learn, without having to know the inner workings of unix.....
On the upside, doing complicated batch processing with a lot of interdependencies is something one doesn't want to do on any unix to begin with..... if you are used to mainframe capabilities.....
UNIX standard and Solaris
I believe that the relation among Solaris, HP-UX, and IBM AIX is the same as those Linux distros. I learnt that they are "relatively" standard. I think you can't compare UNIX and Linux together they are totally different entities. UNIX is commonly used for the central datacenter while Linux is still being used for webservers or any support servers. You still can't replace UNIX with Linux, people know that all big firms (with datacenter, of course) do NOT want to be the first having this major changes. It is gonna be a long way to go for Linux to replace UNIX.
As far as UNIX is concerned, I heard (not really sure though) that Sun Solaris is the most "standard" compare to HP-UX and IBM AIX. Nevertheless, it comes back to the system administrator him/herself. I heard system admins don't really like HP-UX OS structure and commands, well, I am not a system admin afterall.
Just a ploy to avoid inspection?
I have a sneaky idea the whole Dell and Solaris partnership is just Dell trying not to be investigated for their tight ties to Microsoft. Remember, they did this before with Linux, and look how hard they made it to order a Linux system. And this time, I suspect it will have the blessing of Bill, seeing as M$ and SUN are suddenly so lovey-dovey, as long as it allows Dell to carry on getting a massive discount from M$ and M$ to insist Windows is the default install for Dell systems.
As for HP, the way I heard it was customers were much more willing to pay for Red Hat or SuSE on ProLiant than Slowaris. Seeing as HP has since gone on to be the number one Linux server shipper (more than all the Slowaris x86 shipments combined) I think they may just have got that one right....