January 19, 2001, 2:09 PM — Sun Wednesday debuted several new servers, including an appliance family co-branded with Cobalt, which it acquired late last year, and a new Netra server aimed at the low-end Unix market and priced at less than $1,000.
Sun says its addition of the Sun Cobalt server appliance and new Netra devices will allow it to offer systems that range from under $1,000 to $1 million, aimed at corporate and service providers' Internet data centers.
The new Sun Cobalt CacheRaQ 4 appliance is designed to increase network response time by storing content, such as recently requested Web documents, locally at a service provider or corporate Web site. The appliance is preconfigured with hardware and software required for Web caching. Setup and administration are browser-based for easy operation.
Also debuting is Sun's RaQ XTR, a server appliance aimed at service providers and their customers requiring high performance for Web sites and applications. With that in mind, the RaQ XTR server appliance features hardware, software, database and development tools needed to develop and deploy Web applications rapidly.
The Netra X1 server, which starts at $995, is also new to Sun's server lineup and can be used for a number of functions, including e-mail, Web hosting, voice-over-IP gateways and Domain Name System services.
Sun also introduced a new version of its carrier-grade Netra T1 thin server, as well as a compact, carrier-grade PCI system expander -- the Netra E1 -- to enhance server connectivity for demanding applications. The new Netra T1 server features a SPARC processor and runs Solaris. The Netra E1 system expander allows service providers to integrate it with any Sun servers. The Netra E1 system expander is available in AC or DC power versions and is NEBS Level 3 certified.
Simple appliance offerings, such as the Sun Cobalt devices, have taken off in the past year. IDC says appliance servers fall into a rapidly growing market for servers that fill specific needs in the enterprise and service provider arenas. According to IDC, the market for appliance servers will grow from $740 million in 1999 to $15 billion in 2004.
Other vendors competing in the appliance server market include Dell -- which announced last year it would offer appliance servers that run Linux, Windows NT and Novell's cache software -- as well as Compaq and Hewlett-Packard.