IBM announced Thursday it's expanding its relationship with Sun Microsystems, in a move to offer its customers the option of loading their IBM x86-based System x servers, or BladeCenter servers, with Sun's Unix-based Solaris 10 operating system.
Although IBM customers can currently load their systems with Sun's Solaris OS, Big Blue plans over the next three months to add Solaris drivers and system optimizers to their systems and conduct the testing and configurations for customers, who make such requests.
Under the reseller agreement, IBM will receive all the revenues from the sale of its hardware and Sun's Solaris OS, but will then make payments to Sun for the use of its Solaris operating system.
Big Blue, which has its own Unix-based OS known as AIX, plans to continue to make investments in AIX, said Bill Zeitler, senior vice president and group executive of IBM Systems and Technology Group.
And while Solaris 10 will run on IBM's System x servers and BladeCenter servers, eventually efforts will be made to move it onto the IBM mainframe too, Zeitler noted.