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Sun, Microsoft to outline alliance

Rivals set date for giving details of collaborative work.

SAN JOSE, Calif.--Sun Microsystems and Microsoft plan to share details of their cooperation in December, Sun CEO Scott McNealy said on Monday. The rivals signed a partnership in April to share patents and collaborate on getting each other's software to work better together.

Sun's chief technology officer, Greg Papadopoulos, and Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates will share collaboration plans next month. McNealy and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer might elaborate next quarter, McNealy said. Initial work involves interoperability for each company's authentication software, McNealy said. "Bringing those two together in a circle of trust, compatible, single sign-on kind of way will be a huge breakthrough," he said.