Oracle details Web server update

Oracle, in an effort to cash in on the trend toward Web server-based applications, sends its latest Web server update to beta testing.

Oracle (ORCL) today said it has sent to beta testing the latest version of its Web architecture, introducing a product that will interface with other Web servers and represent the company's efforts to cash in on the trend toward Web server-based applications.

In addition to working with its own application programming interface (API), the Oracle WebServer 2.1 will extend the reach of Netscape Communications' Web server when it hits the market this fall. The company said it will support Microsoft's Internet Information Server API by the end of the year. The move toward interoperability is designed to win over developers building applications that can be deployed across servers, the company said.

The product uses Oracle's Web Request Broker to link Web servers to applications and databases and generate HTML-formatted data in real time. Its open application programming bypasses the Common Gateway Interface (CGI) used by many Internet servers to allow users easier access to back-end databases.

With the update, Oracle also strengthens support for Sun Microsystems' Java programming language and Java Interpreter, the company said.

The Redwood Shores, California-based company said the beta version of WebServer 2.1 can be downloaded from its Web site starting today. The server will ship later this fall, priced at $2,495.