Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 3rd Apr 2007 23:18 UTC
Sun Solaris, OpenSolaris "Sun's CEO Jonathan Schwartz loves to splatter the media with the line that Windows, Red Hat Linux and Solaris stand as the only operating systems of significance in the server kingdom. We've spent the last few years struggling to appreciate the seriousness of that claim. Sun's declining system sales failed to inspire much optimism about the company conquering the data centers of tomorrow with a deflating 'venerable' OS. A couple of recent items, however, have tweaked our view of Schwartz's favored claim. It could well be that Solaris - of all things - provides the 'iPod moment' Sun seeks." In the meantime, Sun upped the speed of some of its SPARC chips.
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Solaris
by tony on Wed 4th Apr 2007 18:50 UTC
tony
Member since:
2005-07-06

I like Solaris. Always did. Of the commercial Unix offerings, Solaris was my favorite. Never had a problem with Solaris. Sun, however, seemed to keep getting in its own way.

Solaris x86, was until recently, the red-headed stepchild of Sun. It was panned by SPARC purists and pariahed by Sun's executives because it wasn't the cash money machine that selling Solaris on SPARC was. They even announced at one point that they had no intention of releasing the next (Solaris 9 I think) version on x86, ever.

SPARC started losing out in the datacenter, and so did Solaris. Sun hardware, especially on the low end, had been ridiculously expensive and underpowered. In 2004, they were still selling servers with 550 MHz UltraSPARC IIi processors, which were roughly the power of a Pentium III 900 Mhz. People went with x86 hardware, which had proven itself, and Linux, which both proved itself, and was seriously committed to the x86 platform.

Sun came to its senses though, and started on the bold OpenSolaris initiative. It's been slow going, and I get a sense there's a sense of frustration, and even indignation, that the adoption hasn't been quicker. But platforms are adopted in cycles, and Sun has a lot of ground to make up. After all, Linux works, and works great, so why go through all the trouble to switch? Maybe on the next platform upgrade.

Sun still seems to have a little bit of "product protectionism". They won't release boxes that might be more attractive than current more expensive offerings. This happened with the E250s and E450s. They were terrible web servers. Under-powered and over-expensive ($20K per server with a single processer), not to mention massive, Sun still considered them their web serving offerings.

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