Sun Microsystems Launches OpenSPARC Project - Ignites New Open Source Community for Breakthrough UltraSPARC T1 Processor

Sun Open Sources Microprocessor Design, Lowering Barriers to Innovation and

Application Development for First Purpose-Built Processor for the Next

Internet Build-Out

Dec 06, 2005, 00:00 ET from Sun Microsystems, Inc.

    NEW YORK, Dec. 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Sun Network Computing 2005 Q4
 (NC05Q4) -- Sun Microsystems, Inc. (Nasdaq:   SUNW) today announced the
 OpenSPARC(TM) project to open source its new breakthrough UltraSPARC(R) T1(TM)
 processor design point. With more than 3.4 million registered licenses of the
 Solaris(TM) 10 Operating System (OS) and 10,000 registered OpenSolaris
 community members, Sun is building on a long history of sharing source code
 and creating communities and is the first to create this new 64-bit, 32-thread
 rich SPARC/Solaris community to spur innovation for massively-threaded systems
 and "system on a chip" design. The program will be available in the first
 quarter of 2006.
     Today, Sun also announced plans to publish specifications for the
 UltraSPARC-based chip, including the source of the design expressed in
 Verilog, a verification suite and simulation models, instruction set
 architecture specification (UltraSPARC Architecture 2005) and a Solaris OS
 port. The goal is to enable community members to build on proven technology at
 a markedly lower cost and to innovate freely. The source code will be released
 under an Open Source Initiative (OSI)-approved open source license.
     With this ground-breaking move to open source the UltraSPARC T1 code, Sun
 intends to significantly increase participation in processor architecture
 development and application design and eliminate many of the barriers to the
 next big build-out of the Internet. The program will yield more collaboration
 and cooperation around hardware design and is expected to help drive down the
 costs of implementing the design in different technologies, while enabling
 bold new products to be brought to market.
     "This company was founded on the principles of openness, community and
 competition. In our 23-year history, we've contributed more code to the open
 source community than any other organization on earth," said Scott McNealy,
 chairman and CEO, Sun Microsystems, Inc. "Today, we're breaking new ground by
 extending the open source movement into the IT hardware business and removing
 the barriers for adoption. We're throwing open the doors of innovation for
 everyone to participate, fostering new growth and economic opportunity for Sun
 and the Internet of the future."
     Having launched UltraSPARC 1 almost a decade ago as one of Sun's founders
 and now a partner with venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield and
 Byers, Bill Joy likes the idea that the processor code can be available for
 future innovations. "It's great to see advanced multi-core technology, like
 OpenSPARC, made available in this way for collaboration, education and
 research," said Bill Joy.
     "The SPARC architecture has a long history of being open. Sun's
 open-sourcing of a 64-bit SPARC processor implementation opens SPARC in a new
 and exciting way and paves the way for the next Internet build-out," said
 Karen Anaya, CEO, SPARC International. "SPARC International is delighted to
 see the devoted SPARC community expanding to encompass an even broader range
 of SPARC implementations."
     "Sun's move to open up the design of the new UltraSPARC 64-bit chip is a
 new frontier for open source. We've long understood the benefits of openness
 and sharing for driving innovation and quality in software development, but it
 has yet to be tried for hardware design. While no one expects garage hackers
 doing their own chip fabs, there's no question that hardware designers can
 learn from each other's work as readily as software designers, and that design
 elements taken from one chip could more quickly advance the development of
 others. I'm hopeful that Sun's leadership in this area will encourage similar
 moves from other players," said Tim O'Reilly, founder and CEO, O'Reilly Media.
     "Sun's decision to release Verilog source code for the UltraSPARC hardware
 design under a free software license is a historic step," said Eben Moglen,
 founding director of the Software Freedom Law Center.  "The future direction
 of hardware design will be charted through the same principles of deep
 collaboration and free exchange of ideas that were pioneered by the free
 software and open source communities.  Sun is showing its profound
 understanding of the forces shaping our technological future in making this
     In conjunction with the OpenSolaris project, the OpenSPARC initiative
 heralds the dawn of a new era of 64-bit industry-standard computing where
 communities can leverage well-designed building blocks to innovate and add
 value both at the hardware and software levels. In addition, Sun is actively
 working with the open source community to bring Linux and FreeBSD to the
 UltraSPARC T1 platform.
     Sun continues to be a pioneer in the trend of open sourcing products and
 technologies. Sun has committed to open sourcing its entire software portfolio
 using industry-standard open source licensing models to allow customers to
 have easy and broad access to all of its source code. Many of the components
 of Sun's integrated software platform are already available as open source,
 including the Solaris OS, the Sun Java(TM) Application Server, the
 NetBeans(TM) software tools, and several key underlying services like single
 sign-on capabilities and the ability to connect multiple, independent
 applications in a standard way.
     For more information on OpenSPARC, please go to .
     For more information related to all of Sun's NC05Q4 announcements, as well
 as those above, go to Sun's online press kit at .
     About Sun Microsystems, Inc.
     A singular vision -- "The Network Is The Computer"(TM) -- guides Sun in
 the development of technologies that power the world's most important markets.
 Sun's philosophy of sharing innovation and building communities is at the
 forefront of the next wave of computing:  the Participation Age. Sun can be
 found in more than 100 countries and on the Web at
      Alex Plant
      Sun Microsystems, Inc.
     NOTE:  Sun, Sun Microsystems, the Sun logo, Solaris, Java, Sun Studio, T1,
 NetBeans and The Network Is The Computer are trademarks or registered
 trademarks of Sun Microsystems, Inc. in the United States and other countries.
 All SPARC trademarks are used under license and are trademarks or registered
 trademarks of SPARC International, Inc. in the United States and other
 countries. Products bearing SPARC trademarks are based upon an architecture
 developed by Sun Microsystems, Inc.
     Safe Harbor
     This press release contains forward-looking statements regarding Sun's
 beliefs and expectations regarding the impact and timing of the Open SPARC(TM)
 project to open source its new breakthrough UltraSPARC(R) T1(TM) processor
 design point. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown
 risks, uncertainties and other factors that are difficult to predict and that
 may cause actual results to differ materially. The following important
 factors, among others, could cause actual results to differ materially from
 those expressed in these forward-looking statements: risks associated with
 open sourcing; and failure to rapidly and successfully develop and introduce
 new products. Please also refer to Sun's periodic reports that are filed from
 time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our Annual
 Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2005 and our Quarterly
 Report on Form 10-Q for the fiscal quarter ended September 25, 2005. Sun
 disclaims any obligation and does not undertake to update or revise the
 forward-looking statements in this press release.

SOURCE Sun Microsystems, Inc.