The Santa Cruz Operation (SCO) is pitching the Business Edition of its Unixware 7 operating system (OS) as a longterm replacement for its core Open Server offering and as a means of penetrating the low end Risc Unix market.
The new OS configuration, which was launched on Tuesday along with an enhanced version of Unixware 7 Departmental Edition, are the first two announced offerings to come under the banner of Unixware 7.1.
The rest of the family, which includes another new configuration, Unixware 7 Data Center Edition, will be launched at the Cebit show in Hanover, Germany, on 19 March, when all of the products will also start shipping.
It also plans to announce the first fruits of the Monterey Unix project it is undertaking with IBM at the same time (see VNU Newswire, 28 October, 1998).
The Data Center Edition will include the work undertaken by SCO?s Data Center Acceleration Partners to improve the Oss? scaleability and reliability. It is expected to support boxes running on up to eight processors and include load balancing capabilities (see VNU Newswire, 21 August, 1998).
Mike Foster, SCO?s director of corporate communications, said: "When we launched Unixware 7 last year, we decided not to bring it into the small to medium sized business (SMB) sector, which is our Open Server traditional market, until we had specific relevant features. Version 7.1 provides the entry point of making Unixware available to SMBs - we?ve mainly focused on OEMs and enterprise customers in the past."
He continued: "But this is not a take out manoeuvre for Open Server. It?s not a gut and replace strategy. We want to augment our sales here and take advantage of the Intel replacement market. He added: "We want to come back in and reenergise the SMB market and you?ll see a new thrust as we drive in the network computing model here. We?re not saying that VARs should update their installed base, but we think this has a lot of pull."
He expects Business Edition to account for between 10-20 per cent of all new SMB sales this year and as a result, believes it will take about five years to replace Open Server. However, the firm plans to come out with another release of Open Server in future.
But SCO also hopes to target Business Edition at new sectors, particularly in the telecommunications and retail space and the low end of the Risc Unix marketplace.
As a result, it is banding together with suppliers such as Oracle, Informix, Compaq and IBM?s Netfinity division to target Hewlett Packard and Sun?s resellers in a socalled augmentation strategy. This means it will try to persuade the resellers to take its bundles as a second string to their bow.
The firm?s rationale is that SMB?s now use 1.5 servers on average, but this will increase to three by 2001, and it hopes to supply customers with these additional database, accounting or communications servers.
Business Edition runs on one processor machines with 4Gb of memory that support up to five users and costs $1,399. The offering is binary compatible with Linux, which means it can run Linux applications, and also comes integrated with SCO?s Tarantella thin client software, so users can access the system from a browser for the first time.
Departmental Edition supports boxes based on two processors that support up to 25 users and costs $2,299.
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