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Hitachi Scoping Sun as Its Unix Server Solution.

By William Fellows

Hitachi Data Systems, currently recasting itself as a solutions provider, says it is considering teaming up with Sun Microsystems Inc to offer the company's Solaris systems as the Unix server component of its product strategy. HDS Corp president and CEO Yoshihiro Koshimizu - HDS is the global marketing arm of Hitachi Ltd - told Computergram that the days of box-selling are over. If the deal goes down it will be a kick in the teeth for Hewlett- Packard Co, which last week became HDS' most important OEM customer by agreeing to resell HDS' disk arrays. Hitachi's is also HP's long-time Unix partner in Japan where it resells HP servers and is co-developing HP-UX for IA-64. HDS has existing OEM agreements with Bull SA and Sequent Computer Systems Inc for their Unix servers.

It thinks an even bigger opportunity will be Windows NT sales based on its eight-way server developed from an early version of the Corollary Profusion cross-bar architecture. With the success of its Skyline Bipolar/ECL mainframes being eroded by new generations of IBM Corp S/390 CMOS CPUs, Hitachi Ltd has taken a number of steps to set HDS up with a new business model. It bought back Electronic Data Systems' roughly 16% interest in HDS, closed down the unsuccessful Hitachi PC Co and is implementing a solutions-oriented sales model using home-grown and OEMed technologies wrapped up with integrated software, integration, services and support. Hitachi set it on its way with a $300m allowance.

Koshimizu said HDS will continue to play in the S/390 plug-compatible market even after IBM stops selling its CMOS mainframe CPU designs to Hitachi and other vendors at the end of this year by building its own CMOS chip sets. In future CMOS will overhaul the price/performance of Skyline/Trinium's bi- polar ECL mainframe technology. Hitachi has already revealed a plan to converge the two over the next few years.
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Publication:Computergram International
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:May 10, 1999
Words:319
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