Sun Microsystems, StorageTek Form Storage Networking Alliance

Sun Microsystems Inc. and StorageTek signed a definitive OEM, marketing and services agreement that will simplify cross-platform storage networking for customers managing the explosion of business data across the enterprise, Internet and electronic commerce systems. The alliance between two leaders in network systems and storage will result in important cost savings, efficiencies and time-to-market advantages for many of Sun’s and StorageTek’s Global 2000 customers.

Under the multi-year agreement, StorageTek will OEM Sun’s next-generation open enterprise disk technology and Sun will OEM StorageTek’s next-generation enterprise tape automation systems. These storage offerings will be integrated into Storage Area Network (SAN) solutions targeted for availability later this year. The agreement further includes sales and marketing cooperation designed to provide solutions for customers running Sun, Unix and Windows NT platforms. Moreover, the two companies will provide cooperative service and support for their respective products.

"The alliance with StorageTek is founded on our shared commitment to drive industry standards and develop open storage networking solutions that will support our customers into the next millennium," said Janpieter Scheerder,

President of Sun’s Network Storage division. "The explosion of business data is placing ever-increasing demands on network storage. Working together, Sun and StorageTek will be able to deliver modular, flexible and open network storage solutions to meet these demands."

"We look forward to working closely with Sun to bring our shared, customer-focused vision and mutual strengths to bear on customer problems," said David Weiss, StorageTek Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer. "Sun’s vision of open network computing and its leadership in the Internet is complementary to our strategy of open, intelligent and integrated network storage solutions."

StorageTek will OEM and integrate Sun’s next-generation modular disk technology as a component part on which to build and sell open, intelligent and integrated network storage. Marketed through direct and indirect channels, these solutions will provide StorageTek customers with stackable, scalable and highly available RAID solutions using Sun storage and leading fibre channel technology for both Sun and non-Sun platforms. Availability of the new StorageTek products based on the Sun architecture is expected early next year.

Sun will OEM, via direct and indirect channels, StorageTek’s intelligent tape automation systems based on the breakthrough, high-performance 9840 tape drives. These next-generation storage libraries will provide unprecedented capacity, performance and reliability to handle the most demanding enterprise and Internet applications. The systems are expected to be available later this year, and will be tightly integrated with Sun’s servers and network storage to enhance reliability and ease-of-management across platforms.

Sun and StorageTek have pledged to continue working closely together to develop open storage networking solutions through leadership on standards bodies, such as the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA). Sun and StorageTek, along with other industry leaders, have worked closely on developing the Jiro platform. The Jiro platform, formerly known as the StoreX initiative, leverages Java and Jini technologies to make SANs manageable and interoperable.

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