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100 ISPs enroll in Sun's certification program

The first nine companies pass Sun Microsystem's certification program for service providers that is meant to show customers they have a solid infrastructure for hosting Web sites, renting software over the Internet and other Web-based services.

Sun Microsystems today said it has signed on more than 100 companies that offer Internet-based services to a new program intended to showcase its Net expertise.

Sun in May launched a certification program for service providers to show customers that they have a solid infrastructure for hosting Web sites, renting software over the Internet and other Web-based services.

Today, Sun said nine service providers, including Corio, Exodus and USinternetworking, have passed Sun's requirements, showing they can keep their computers and software up and running. More than 100 other companies are enrolled in the certification program.

The company also announced a multimillion-dollar advertising campaign to market its "SunTone Certified" program. Sun also said it will help its certified partners market and sell their Internet services.

"It's going to be the 'Good Housekeeping' seal of approval for service providers," Sun chief operating officer Ed Zander said at a press conference.

Sun is the latest firm to create a certification program that lets service providers tie themselves to a company's brand. Networking giant Cisco Systems, for example, offers a certification program called "Cisco Powered Networks." For Sun, it helps the company sell more of its servers and Sun-Netscape Alliance's software.

Sun executives said the other firms that have passed Sun's certification program are Digex, Digital Island, eOnline, Global Center, Niku and Portera.