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Sybase brewing Java jolt

Continuing down the comeback trail, Sybase is launching new Java-based development software and transactional middleware.

Continuing down the comeback trail, Sybase (SYBS) today launched a barrage of technology for building heavy-duty Web applications.

The company announced a beta program for its Jaguar CTS Web transaction processing software, and shipment of Java database access software.

Both products are intended to help developers using Sybase's database software and application development tools to build new e-commerce and Web-based business applications and to move existing client-server apps onto the Web.

Jaguar CTS combines transaction processing middleware and object request broker software to let developers build Java, ActiveX, C/C++, and Common Object Request Broker Architecture (CORBA) Web applications.

Web transaction software is becoming increasingly important as more companies expand simple Web-based information systems into new electronic commerce and order-entry applications.

Most notable is Microsoft's Transaction Server software, which shipped last December, for building ActiveX-based Web applications to process transactions. Oracle has added transactional capability to its currently shipping Web Application Server. And upstart transaction software companies, such as Kiva Software, are specifically targeting Web Java-based transactional applications.

All of the packages are intended for building new, large-scale, Web-based applications such as order entry, reservation, and electronic commerce systems that process hundreds, even thousands, of transactions per minute.

A free beta copy of the Jaguar CTS software development kit will be posted to Sybase's Web site beginning on April 2, the company said. The product will ship in the third quarter on HP-UX, AIX, Solaris, and Windows NT operating systems. Pricing will be announced at that time.

Sybase has also shipped JConnect for JDBC, data access software for allowing access from client PCs to database systems using the Java programming language. JConnect is a software driver that introduces a simple, fast, and standardized way for Java applets to request data from server-based databases.

The JConnect software eliminates the need for additional drivers and software on client systems. The software can be installed and maintained on network servers, and because it is only 165KB in size, it can be easily downloaded on the fly to client systems, according to Sybase.

JConnect for JDBC is priced at $495 per server for a Workplace version that runs on Windows NT. An Enterprise version, which runs on Unix, sells for $1,995 per server.

Sybase, on the mend from successive money-losing quarters, is attempting to become a leading provider of development tools and database software for Web development. On April 7, the company is expected to introduce additional new software, including a new release of its SQL Server database software, code-named Gryphon.

Sybase is expected to announce on April 17 a razor-slim profit of 1 cent per share for the first quarter of 1997.