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Chip Design Authors: Jason Bloomberg, Trevor Bradley, David Strom

Related Topics: Ubuntu Linux Journal, Chip Design

Ubuntu Linux: Article

Open Source Ubuntu's Agreement with Sun Brings "Massive" Benefits

Sun's Cool Threads Technology to be Served by Ubuntu/GNU Agreement

Word that Sun and Canonical have agreed to bring Ubuntu 6.06 LTS (Long Term Support) to UltraSparc systems has created one of the more interesting pairings in recent history.

The increasingly popular Unbuntu desktop Linux distribution is based on the GNU license, the touchstone for an open source movement that sometimes seems more political than technological. Sun, although moving toward Open Source at its own pace, nevertheless built its reputation on the foundations of its own version of the Unix operating system, its own chips, and its own programming language, tightly controlling most aspects of all these things.

But now, things change, with Ubuntu and Sun's latest server technology coming together. Through the OpenSparc initiative, Canonical engineering and the Ubuntu community were given open access to the design of the UltraSPARC T1 processor and quickly completed the porting process, the companies say.

"The release of the Ubuntu GNU/Linux distribution on UltraSparc T1 processor-based systems merely ten weeks after the open source release of the chip design point validates the open hardware approach pioneered by Sun with the UltraSparc T1 processor, and demonstrates the Ubuntu community's excitement at the benefits of Sun's SPARC processor-based CMT architecture for next-generation Web, communications and transactional services," according to information published by Sun.

Introduced in December 2005, Sun's Cool Thread servers are priced at the lower and lower middle part of the market, but promise a "massively threaded" approach that can be embraced by the most demanding clients, including eBay, Bank of America, and the burgeoning Chinese sina.com website.

Who GNU?

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Enterprise Open Source News Desk trawls the fast-growing world of Professional Open Source for business-relevant items of news, opinion, and insight.

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