"We will be aggressively supporting the fork that Ubuntu has been doing," Sun chief executive Jonathan Schwartz said at the conference. "The ideals of that community are relatively familiar to us."
The Ubuntu Linux distribution is based on Debian. The operating system currently provides only a desktop version that has a strong following among software developers. A first server system is scheduled for release on 1 June.
The distribution is sponsored by Canonical, which offers commercial support for the application.
Sun's T1 servers use the company's Niagara multi-core processor. The systems were launched last December and are currently certified for Solaris only.
Sun's support is a major win for Ubuntu as it aspires to become one of the world's main Linux distributions.
Its creators seek to differentiate the offering from Red Hat and SuSE by providing support as an optional service for a limited number of systems, rather than bundling support automatically with the software.
Sun hopes that supporting the operating system will expose its hardware to a new group of users. A company spokesman denied that the support was aimed as a move against Red Hat and SuSE.
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