As part of a new strategy to bring together Unix servers, Intel processors, Java and client browser technology, SCO has launched a new middleware technology called Tarantella.
Tarantella allows end users to access Unix system server or mainframe-based applications on Java-enabled Web browsers, without requiring the code to be rewritten. "With Tarantella, businesses are not required to spend time and money rewriting their applications in Java," explained SCO senior vice president, Ray Anderson. "This is good news for developers." Anderson claimed Tarantella will allow developers to deploy their applications on the Web, even though the applications themselves may not have been designed for Web deployment.
SCO intends to make Tarantella available as a feature in the Gemini operating system, which integrates its OpenServer and UnixWare product lines. Gemini is due in August. SCO will also license a version of the middleware to independent software developers so they can deploy their Unix applications as Web applications. This is expected by mid-1997.
The Unix application runs within the Web browser, alongside HTML text and graphics. In a demonstration of the technology last week, SCO showed a Motif application running on a UnixWare server being accessed over the Web from a PC using the Netscape browser. The user interface for the Motif application is converted, on-the-fly by Tarantella, into Java which is then run on the client browser.
As well as giving users access to Motif applications via their Web browsers, Tarantella also provides access to character applications via terminal emulation.
Mainframe access is supported through character or X Windows applications which are hosted on a Unix server. The server provides a gateway to the back-end mainframe application. Additionally, Tarantella provides direct access from Web clients to mainframe applications using the Tarantella protocol engine.
SCO claimed Windows applications can be supported in the Tarantella model via third-party Windows server technology such as NCD WinCenter. SCO plans to support Windows directly at a later date although no time scales have been given.
A demonstration of Tarantella running a Motif application on the Web can be found at www.tarantella.sco.com
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