Sparcsystems builder Aries Research Inc, Fremont, California, said it will have clones of Sun Microsystems Inc’s Ultra 1 workstation and UltraServer 1 lines in the shute by the middle of January. There will be no technological differences between what it is calling the Marixx US line and the Sun boxes initially, although they will be offered in other packaging arrangements – tower configurations for instance – and later revisions may be tailored for particular markets. It expects to continue to support its SparcStation 20-compatibles for up to two years. This time around the cloners will have access to the technology from which Sun will carve its own high-end commercial server line (the Xerox Corp-derived XDBus in the SparcServer 1000 and SparcCenter 2000 hasn’t been made available to the compatible houses), though Aries said it hasn’t the resources to track Sun’s high-end server offerings. Aries said 50% of its 4,000 installations are in the US, 40% in the Pacific Rim and 10% in Europe and elsewhere. It expects to scale up its European reseller channels to deliver Marixx US units over the coming year. Aries reckons there’s room for all of the Sun-compatible houses in the market under Sun’s new willingness to make it [UltraSparc] an open environment, but expects market forces to reduce the headcount by at least one in the next year.