Sixth Solaris 9 OS update

Sun Microsystems Inc. says that it has released the sixth update to the Solaris 9 Operating System (OS) for Sparc and x86 systems. It simultaneously announced the availability of next-generation Solaris functionality through Software Express for Solaris.

The company says that, with the Solaris 9 update, organizations benefit from improvements to Solaris volume manager, performance enhancements and additional platform support for the new Sun, Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD) Opteron processor, as well as UltraSparc IV processor-based systems. Additionally, the company notes, Software Express allows customers to begin early use of new enhancements to the OS, including N1 grid containers, dynamic tracing (DTrace) and a cryptographic framework with process rights management -- which aims to enable systems administrators to achieve higher levels of performance and tighter controls for system and data security.

To date, says Tertius Bezuidenhout, national systems engineer manager at Sun Microsystems SA, there have been more than 10 000 downloads of Software Express for Solaris.

"As the only Enterprise-class Unix OS available on the x86 platform, Solaris 10 is positioned as the logical alternative for HP/UX and AIX customers, particularly those abandoned by their vendors on AMD Opteron processor-based and Intel systems," he notes. "Sun is able to help businesses ensure a consistent, secure and high quality migration to the x86 platform on AMD systems, or expansion and growth on the Sparc platform."

As Sun prepares to release Solaris 10 later this year -- one Solaris for Sparc and x86 platforms -- it is experiencing consistent demand for the Solaris OS on x86 systems.

"Currently there are more than 500 000 registered licences for Solaris 9 x86, and approximately 200 compatible third-party hardware systems. In addition, through Sun's alliance with AMD, we plan to provide customers with a growth path to 64-bit x86 computing, while enabling 32-bit and 64-bit application co-existence. Business adoption is also demonstrating that Solaris x86 is providing the reliability and uptime demanded by enterprise applications," says Bezuidenhout.

The Solaris 10 OS update, according to the company, is available through Sun's Software Express program.

The company says that new features in Solaris 10 include N1 grid containers, which can allow administrators to divide a given system into more than 8 000 software partitions per single instance of the OS; predictive self-healing technologies that enable isolation, diagnosis, and self-healing of both software and hardware faults; process rights management technology for new levels of security; and a new suite of dynamic tracing capabilities for analyzing and diagnosing elusive problems in real time.

"New features added in the latest updates to Software Express for Solaris help to reduce complexity and risk. These include a Web interface for installing and patching software, technology that reduces spam e-mail as it arrives from the network, and automatic file system logging which, by default, will increase performance and disaster recovery resilience," concludes Bezuidenhout.

According to the company the update to Solaris 9 is available immediately for download at: http://www.sun.com/solaris/binaries/get.html.

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