Sun is more than Solaris

This is not the first article that I have read stating that Sun is pinning our hopes on Solaris 10. Then, of course, I read the article and it states that [paraphrasing] "Sun thinks that Solaris 10 is groundbreaking". Yes, we think Solaris 10 is awesome, but we are not pinning our hopes on Solaris.

Sun is much bigger than Solaris. In a conversation with one of my fellow Starbucks addicts who met with Sun last week, his statement was simply "I didn't know Sun could do so much for us." Of little consequence to him is the operating system. In fact, we hardly even discuss it. The discussion is much broader and business focused than "we have zones". We have a global service organization which is important my buddy/addict, as (potentially) is Managed Services. Some of the discussions center around the Java Enterprise System and Identity Management. "Wow? $100 employee?"

Of course, he will need hardware as well, but the discussion rarely talks about hardware products. After a few months of time getting to know his business problem, we finally looked at an actual hardware product yesterday. Most of the software discussion is around the Sun Game Server. We also spend considerable time talking about the high-level system architecture.

Yes, Sun is much larger than Solaris 10. But we are extremely proud of Solaris 10. Don't mistake pride and engineering excellence with pinning our hopes.

And one other article mis-statement. Millions of developers support the Java Platform, not tens of thousands. Unfortunately the article over-exaggerates our Solaris 10 focus and under-exaggerates the popularity of Java.

Comments:

If the media get it wrong, we have only ourselves to blame. I'm still waiting for front page Sun.com stories weaving the various messages about Solaris, Java, SPARC and Opteron together in a holistic way. I want to see Jonathan talking about how Solaris 10 makes JES better, or how Solaris 10 with Studio, Janus and Zones on an Opteron workstation creates an unmatched developer environment for Solaris, Linux, or Java developers.

Posted by Geoff Arnold on November 07, 2004 at 01:32 AM PST #

I understand where you are coming from regarding the holistic view.. At the same time, we have new products and services listed all the time on our home page that shows, IMHO, Sun is not pinning our hopes on any one thing.

Posted by John Clingan on November 07, 2004 at 04:08 AM PST #

We need to address (at least) two different audiences. One wants to know what we have: they track all the individual products, services, and so forth. We get to them fairly well, although sometimes we confuse them. (Our Linux story is a case in point, ditto N1.) The second wants to understand where Sun is going: what our strategy is, how the various products and services contribute to that strategy. Some of this group are on Wall Street; others are CIOs trying to understand whether we are a viable partner for them. We communicate relatively poorly - and inconsistently - with that audience.

Posted by Geoff Arnold on November 07, 2004 at 07:10 AM PST #

RE: Geoff Arnold I've seen it myself; people out there only think there is Lotus Notes/Domino and Groupwise that can replace Exchange; when I mention JES, they ask, "when did that product become available?" What you need is a co-herient marketing machine, that markets the "complete" system, not just the hardware, software etc. as individual components. Is the old "we've got everything under the one roof!" like advertising.

Posted by kaiwai on November 07, 2004 at 10:09 PM PST #

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