Thursday, May 19, 2005

Growing Solaris on x86

Jim Grisanzio has blogged on the potential for OpenSolaris to help with Solaris on x86 here
http://blogs.sun.com/roller/page/jimgris/20050413#growing_Solaris_on_x86

It certainatly does look like Sun is showing commitment to x86 and the OpenSolaris program will help with one of the main problems at the moment, drivers and hardware support.

Technically Solaris is a great OS and I would love to deploy it on every server in my environment. There is one big blocker here though and that is ISV support. I have talked to, and heard of, many ISVs that currently do not plan to support Solaris on x86. This is really an area that Sun needs to tackle big time! Generally the business or the developers will dictate the application and if there is no support for Solaris the System Admin has no choice but to deploy an inferior OS.

I would be interested to hear peoples views on this problem as it plagues me often.

3 Comments:

Blogger 10ksnooker said...

With the number of open source packages for Solaris available, I don't see the lack of ISVs as a big deal. You can build completely functional server systems with what;s in the box. Zones just adds some spice :-)

IMHO a much bigger problem is the lack of HW drivers and the lack of truly low end systems to deploy on. Specifically certified deskside barebone servers under $1000.

Most of the high end paid software will show up as the volumes build, so doubt there will be any need for prodding.

6:04 PM  
Blogger Shanon Loveridge said...

Bill I completely agree with you that a functional server system can be built with Solaris.

However what I am talking about is Commercial business software such as ETL software, Financial software, Business Reporting software etc...

These are areas where Solaris (SPARC) is a good choice for large installations but for smaller environments, or those which can scale horizontally, the low end SPARC servers cannot compete with the price/performance of the low end x86 servers. It is in these situations that Linux and Windows end up being deployed.

In my opinion to avoid loosing ground (and increasing growth) in the low to midrange area of the market Sun needs to make sure there is sufficient ISV support for the Solaris x86 line.

6:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The HW would not be an issue if SUN stayed on the Sparc side. They could reduce prices. There are even companies that develop USB2.0 controllers and graphics card for SUN
(e.g.) Peritek. Solaris is a great OS but we have a lot of great OSs on x86.

3:33 AM  

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