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7/20/1999
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Sun Links Solaris With NT Network Services

Sun Microsystems yesterday unveiled Solaris Easy Access Server 3.0, software intended to help users consolidate servers by letting them run Windows NT network services-- such as BackOffice authentication, NT file services, and NT Directory services-on Sun's Solaris platform.

The idea, Sun officials say, is for the consolidated server to seamlessly integrate into workgroup and department networks. Solaris Easy Access Server also provides a set of tools with a wizard interface akin to that used in Windows NT administration, so administrators can use the same tools to oversee the services, eliminating the need for retraining.

Sun says the server was developed to help customers consolidate workgroups; to do that, it knew it had to support Microsoft's networking model, which is pervasive in workgroups. Solaris Easy Access Server takes the reliability Solaris offers and makes it easy to use, says Joyce Becknell, an analyst with the Aberdeen Group. "Sun looked at interoperability and decided the real issue is management," she says. "NT is easy to use, but the issue with NT servers is reliability. They made it so you don't need three Ph.D.s to run your computing environment, but you still have the reliability."

Pricing for Solaris Easy Access Server, which is available next month, begins at $595 per server.

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