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November 9, 1995

VERSION 2.5 OF 32-BIT SOLARIS BILLED BY SUNSOFT AS “ONLY REAL COMPETITOR TO WINDOWS NT”

By CBR Staff Writer

SunSoft Inc officially unwrapped the 2.5 release of its 32-bit Solaris Unix last week, claiming the Sparc, iAPX-86 and PowerPC editions represent the only real competitor to Windows NT. The company said 2.5 will deliver 150% improvement in time-sharing performance, up to 30% faster Network File System performance with NFS 3.0 over Solaris 2.4, as well as support for up to 64 processors (from 2.4’s 32) and databases up to 1.5Tb in size. Part of the performance improvement is down to the so-called Spring Doors microsecond inter-process communication system brought over from the company’s Spring advanced research project (CI No 2,629). Solaris’ AdminTool and AdminSuite have been revved for enhanced administration and security. Running existing applications under 2.5 on Sun’s new 64-bit Ultra 1 UltraSparc unit without a recompile garners a six times performance improvement. Release 2.5 is supposedly significantly faster on a Sparc 20, offering a 25% to 30% improvement. The PowerPC release is still in beta and is now expected sometime early next year. But where’s a 64-bit Solaris to take full advantage of UltraSparc? SunSoft said it will implement the forthcoming 64-bit Unix application programming interface specifications, but did not say when that will happen. Hewlett-Packard Co, IBM Corp, Silicon Graphics Inc and others have licensed Network File System 3.0 – available only as part of a packaged ONC+ bundle; Digital Equipment Corp is still stuck on Network File System 2.0.

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