Sun delivers on N1

After millions of dollars worth of research and development, Sun Microsystems has delivered on its N1 vision, which is designed to remove the expense and complexity from network computing.

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By  Matthew Southwell Published  February 23, 2003

After millions of dollars worth of research and development, Sun Microsystems has delivered on its N1 vision. Designed to remove the expense and complexity from network computing, the strategy is designed to converge multiple environments, platforms, operating systems and distributed computing resources, such as servers and storage, into a single powerful network computer through visualisation and provisioning.

“Customers tell us that they must have lower costs — of acquisition and of operation. By changing the way we develop, go to market and support our products to a single unified view of the network computing platform, we have put Sun on course to deliver an increasingly responsive and efficient infrastructure that will deliver a higher quality of service at [a] lower cost,” says Scott McNealy, chairman, president & CEO of Sun Microsystems.

The first products to bear the N1 stamp are the Sun Fire Blade Server Platform and the N1 Provisioning Server 3.0, Blades Edition. The former is a multi-architecture blade platform that boasts Linux and Solaris operating environments, SPARC and x86 blade architectures, SSL Proxy and Content Load Balancing specialty blades, integrated switches and system controllers, N1 software, Sun ONE middleware and optimised NAS storage. The latter is a blade virtualisation solution that allows customers to rapidly design, configure, provision and scale blade-based server farms.

“We are rapidly delivering the benefits of our N1 vision and strategy in the form of new products and services,” says Steve MacKay, vice president of N1 products at Sun Microsystems. “With N1 Provisioning Server 3.0 Blades Edition we’re helping customers simplify the management of their existing data centres and drastically reduce costs,” he adds.

While MacKay’s reference to data centres conjures up images of high end installations, the vendor says the N1 vision is all encompassing, and even organisations with minimal computing environments will be able to benefit.

“The data centre is no longer the domain of larger corporations as most organisations consider their computing environment to be a data centre. Furthermore, all businesses have similar concerns when it comes to computing, such as complexity and expense, and all that changes with size is the scale of these problems. As a result, N1 is a strategy that scales across multiple sizes of businesses,” explains Hein Vandermerwe, enterprise IT architect at Sun Microsystems in the Middle East.

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