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May 19, 1997updated 05 Sep 2016 1:02pm


By CBR Staff Writer

Unix vendors are bracing themselves for Microsoft’s invasion of their home market in the mid-range and high-end systems arena with Windows NT, concentrated this week by Microsoft’s so called Scalability Day, to be held for press and analysts this Tuesday in New York, and later at similar events around the world. The Unix vendors continue to insist that Windows NT cannot offer the robustness and scalability of Unix systems, and remains restricted to four-way multi-processor systems. Tandem Computers Inc’s demonstration of a cluster of 16 four-way sytems last week won’t have encouraged them (CI No 3,161) – nor will the availability of Oracle Corp’s Parallel Server for NT (CI No 3,159). But that aside, the tempting prospect that network costs can be cut in half by switching to an NT/Backoffice set-up, the Scalability day could be a big attractions for many Unix users. Industry analysts Mongomery Securities have calculated that for an average 100-user set-up, an NT network costs around $372 a user compared with $728 for those with a Sun/Netscape/Oracle/Lotus configuration. And International Data Corp figures show Unix is already on the retreat, with a total of 600,000 licenses shipped last year across 34 or more flavours, compared with 732,000 copies of NT from Microsoft. This year, 1.2 million NT server licenses are expected to ship. On the counter- attack, IBM Corp ran some transaction processing speed trials last week, pushing one billion transactions over a 20 hour period through its DB2 database with Encina transaction monitor, running on a Unix-based RS/6000 over DCE. Afterwards, the company declared: Scalabilitity’s not just about numbers. It’s about security, availability and reliability. Meanwhile Sun Microsystems Inc aims to woo Microsoft customers with the forthcoming launch of its Tasmo servers, which are designed to hit Microsoft’s own prime territory of workgroup and departmental systems, with a fully Java-enabled environment.

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