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More from the Hardware Front: Sun Launches Sun Fire 15K Server


As competition heats up on the hardware side of the life sciences computing market, Sun Microsystems added to the fray last week with the launch of its new flagship high-end system: the Sun Fire 15K server.

The system is the next generation of the company’s Star Fire server, according to Sia Zadeh, group marketing manager at Sun. He said that the new server’s scalability should make it especially promising for the life sciences market.

Users can start with a very small configuration and scale “from the same simple system that they use on the desktop to a very large configuration in terms of both the number of processors, the memory configuration, and the volume of data it can handle,” Zadeh said.

Zadeh added that the Sun Fire 15K was developed with input from Sun’s partners and end-users in the life science community, such as Oxford GlycoSciences and Caprion Pharmaceuticals “to make sure we’re developing platforms and technologies to meet their needs and challenges.”

In contrast to its competitors, who are “cutting back on their life sciences investments,” Sun’s commitment to the sector remains strong, Zadeh said. “Our partners and end-users have been burned by companies who had good technology at one time but who were not able to sustain their business model.”

Despite a warning by Sun CFO Mike Lehman during the company’s mid-quarter conference call on August 29 that, “due to performance management, attrition, and reduction of a few programs, we expect to exit the quarter with around 500 people less than the end of Q4,” Zadeh said Sun’s life sciences operation should remain intact.

“Life science is definitely viewed by Sun Microsystems as a growth market,” Zadeh said. “If anything we are actually increasing our investment and commitment to this space.”

— BT


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