/PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Sun Microsystems, Inc. (Nasdaq: SUNW) today
announced a new client solution eliminating the expense of traditional
desktops while significantly bolstering security and authentication.
"We've been advocating the move to browser-based applications for the past
six years -- we believe our customers are now ready to take that next step,"
said Jonathan Schwartz, executive vice president of Software, Sun
Microsystems. "Combining world-class Java Card authentication with an open
source desktop software stack and off-the-shelf hardware, we can deliver
military-grade security with profound savings in acquisition and operational
costs. The power, security and economics customers have long enjoyed through
Sun's end-to-end architecture are finally coming to the PC desktop. We are
disrupting traditional computing economics to benefit our customers while
completing our client product line."
Sun plans to extend its reach in the enterprise by initially focusing the
new initiative on users in cost and security-sensitive areas such as
call-centers, retail banks, and class-rooms where personal computers and their
applications are generally underutilized, insecure and costly to administer.
In these instances, a client is a computing device on which users handle basic
tasks such as word processing and email as well as entering reservations or
The new client desktop includes hardware, Java Card(TM) technology (the
ability to authenticate access using a Java Card), a complete, open desktop
software environment as well as a server for identity, portal and messaging
capabilities. This approach breaks entirely new ground in the client-side
solution category and disrupts the high-cost economics of the traditional
The benefits for the enterprise are significant, with savings in
acquisition, maintenance, administration and on-going operational support.
This is combined with superior security, the absence of viruses and their
associated costs, and an alternative to purchasing expensive Microsoft
software. Sun will integrate, support and service the open source technologies
that it assembles into the full solution.
The new solution brings together off-the-shelf hardware, open-source
software and Sun's own industry-leading intellectual property. These include
low-cost desktop systems hardware and several open source software efforts,
namely Linux, Mozilla, OpenOffice, Evolution and GNOME. This gives desktop
users a familiar desktop environment and the ability to interoperate with
Microsoft Office documents, presentations and spreadsheet formats. In
addition, with Evolution, the user is provided with a Microsoft Outlook-like
client which interoperates with Microsoft Exchange while Sun also provides the
fully supported StarOffice, the world's most popular open office productivity
"As the leading product lifecycle management (PLM) applications provider,
Agile is able to offer our solutions on the integrated Linux desktop from Sun
while strengthening our commitment to deliver on Agile's Guaranteed Business
results strategy," comments Joe Hage, senior vice president of product
development at Agile Software Corporation. "We are able to offer a fully
integrated solution while continuing our proven track record of over
850 successful implementations at manufacturing companies in the medical
devices, high technology, semiconductor and automotive industries. Many of our
customers require a high degree of security to protect their intellectual
property and tracking to ensure regulatory compliance. Leveraging Sun's
powerful identity and authentication capabilities, through Sun(TM) ONE
Identity Server and Java Cards that Sun is incorporating into the platform,
enables us to focus on delivering greater business value and improved product
lifecycle management processes to our customers."
"This system's approach to the network client marks another milestone in
the company's edge computing strategy and was preceded by Sun's recent LX50
server announcement," said Neil Knox, executive vice president of the Volume
Systems Group, Sun Microsystems. "Today's announcement builds on Sun's Linux
momentum with enterprise-class security and authentication as well as the
essential communication, collaboration and desktop services users need in
these targeted applications."
With the ability to use Java Card technology for access and authentication
to the system, customers can dramatically enhance the security of the upcoming
desktop solution. As an open and proven technology Java Card solutions are
currently deployed worldwide in industries such as financial services,
government and telecommunications.
The total system solution is expected to be available in 2003 with
prototype systems available soon at Sun's worldwide iForce centers. "We want
customers, ISVs, OEMs and channel partners to have the conversation with us
about how much they can save and facilitate their migration to this much
needed alternative environment," said Schwartz.
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