Sun’s Predicament

I’ve been working with Unix for a fairly long time now- about 13 years.

I’ll admit that I started with Linux and thought it was light years ahead of SunOS 4.x running on those old SPARC machines- I mean who had heard of SPARC processors? I remember my boss trying to explain to me that even an older SPARC processor was more powerful than a newer Intel Pentium processor. I didn’t really believe him. In time, I convinced them to get rid of most of their SPARC/Solaris in favor of the hip, free, and cheap Intel/Linux combination.

Now I see that I couldn’t have been more wrong. I realize that SunOS 4.x probably still has features which I don’t know how to use properly. When I look at Solaris 10, ZFS, Zones, LDOMS, DTrace, etc. I not really sure you could pay me to work with Linux (that would be soo depressing). That isn’t even mentioning the SPARC hardware it runs on- Can any Intel server compare to a T5140???

That’s why the current situation with Sun absolutely SUCKS (pardon my french)! I’m sure there are a lot of admins out there who feel the same way. If this Oracle deal doesn’t go through and Sun disappears because of it, it will be our loss. We’ll be stuck with mediocre operating systems and commodity hardware and I really hope it doesn’t happen.

That said, I’d like to say thanks to all the people at Sun who are still turning out crazy cool technologies despite the problems.

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3 comments for “Sun’s Predicament

  1. me
    November 10, 2009 at 11:57 am

    Update: The situation is getting worse according to this report- http://news.cnet.com/8301-30685_3-10393740-264.html

    I wonder if anyone is organizing some sort of protests or petitions to the EC?

  2. Nick Morris
    June 3, 2010 at 3:43 pm

    Quick question: With Nehalem and now Nehalem EX, does you T5140/T5240 point still hold water? The public needs to know 🙂

    • Yonah Russ
      June 4, 2010 at 3:31 am

      The Nehalem processors are a HUGE improvement to previous Intel processors and there is no way I can say that enough. They seriously improve the performance, power consumption, and RAS possibilities. They are the first processor Intel has put out which deserves a place inside enterprise hardware IMO.

      That said, Unless an application is single threaded and absolutely needs the faster clock speed, or doesn’t support SPARC Solaris, I see no reason to use Intel based HW. Everything else is better on UltraSPARC- OS, server components (even comparing Sun X64 HW to Sun SPARC HW, the SPARC HW is better quality), virtualization, RAS, etc.

      Regarding the original topic of this post- I think things are pretty much working out. I’m disappointed that Oracle has discontinued future development of Webstack and I would prefer that their road map work on faster clock speeds in the T3 instead of more threads (At some point it doesn’t help to have more threads in a single machine) and lastly, I really hope they don’t do anything really drastic in Solaris 11.

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