Oracle chairman and chief executive Larry Ellison predicted businesses all over the world will be forced to move from a client/server architecture to network computing because of the high cost of maintaining Microsoft NT-based servers.
In a keynote speech at the Internet World show in New York this week, Ellison said the labour-intensive effort of deploying, administering, storing, backing up and supporting NT in a client/server environment is too huge to bear. "There are not enough skilled [NT-trained] people on the planet," he said.
Moving applications and data from clients to servers is the only way to save time and money, he continued, "not centralising servers with bigger machines but consolidating servers into a manageable number", he said.
Ellison promoted the network computer as heavily as he usually does when speaking in public, but this time he referred to the client as an "appliance client" rather than a network computer (NC), ensuring the audience understood that either a PC with a Java-enabled browser or an NC could be used as the client - a change of focus from previous statements.
"As all Oracle applications move to the network computing architecture our customers will move to a network computing architecture. I think 100 per cent will migrate," he said.
Network computing takes the reliability of mainframes, the rich user interface of PCs and adds an open, standards-based platform, he said.
Ellison also joked that he was surprised so many people had listened to him after Oracle's share price fell by 30 per cent following poor results on Monday: "If you lost a lot of money on the market yesterday, like I did, you can save a fortune by moving to network computing."
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