HP and Sun Microsystems have announced an expanded multi-year partnership agreement that enables HP to distribute and provide software technical support for Sun's Solaris 10 Operating System on the HP ProLiant server and blade system platforms.

Under the terms of the new original equipment manufacturers (OEM) and support agreement, Sun becomes a strategic HP ProLiant OS distribution partner and Solaris is now elevated to the lineup of key operating environments for the HP ProLiant platform.
The new deal sets a course for the companies to work together to expand demand for both Solaris and OpenSolaris on both HP ProLiant servers and server blades into new markets.
By providing a single point of purchase, contact and accountability for Solaris on HP ProLiant, HP and Sun are improving the overall customer experience. To further reduce operational costs, the companies will collaborate on integration of Solaris 10 and HP Insight software on HP ProLiant servers to deliver usability and management enhancements.
"We're responding to our customers who have asked for expanded HP ProLiant operating environment support to address their diverse application requirements," says Mark Potter, senior vice-president and GM: BladeSystem and Insight Software at HP. "The combination of Solaris and HP ProLiant delivers superior performance, scalability and virtualisation capabilities on x86 servers. Backed by HP Technology Services, the agreement gives our joint customers complete confidence to grow their businesses while also controlling costs."
John Fowler, executive vice-president: systems at Sun Microsystems, adds: "The endorsement of Solaris on HP ProLiant dramatically expands the available market for Solaris on x86 servers, building on the largest installed-base of any commercial Unix and Linux distribution.
"The growing demand and ecosystem around Solaris helps to further propel its adoption, along with breakthrough technologies like ZFS and DTrace, and outstanding operational economics and market-leading support for thousands of ISVs and applications."
With HP ProLiant leading the x86 server market at 38,2% factory revenue share in the fourth quarter of 2008 and the strong market support for Solaris and its more than 4 300 unique x86 applications, the joint Solaris on HP ProLiant solution has already contributed to a significant number of customer installations. HP ProLiant customers who prefer Solaris on x86 now have access to a complete infrastructure solution for the data center from a single source, making the purchase process easier and more cost-effective.
Additionally, customers benefit from the confidence that HP, the largest technology provider in the world, is driving issue resolution for the joint solution through HP Technology Services and Sun is providing software updates through its automated Connected Services offerings.
As a result of this agreement, HP also will increase its participation in the OpenSolaris community, collaborating with other users on feature development and interoperability.