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Gates trumpets CA deals

Embattled Microsoft CEO Bill Gates finds solace among CA World '98 attendees more concerned with network outages than antitrust minutiae.

    NEW ORLEANS--Embattled Microsoft CEO Bill Gates may have found solace amid the information technology professionals at this week's CA World '98 user conference, who were probably more concerned with network outages than antitrust minutiae.

    Fresh off technology conference appearances in Chicago and Denver last week, Gates offered his thoughts on familiar subjects such as the "digital nervous system" to a packed hall at Computer Associates' week-long showcase.

    Gates spent the entire day at the conference, no doubt attracted by the numerous high-ranking technology executives from large companies who use CA's products within their corporate networks.

    His speech followed the announcement that Windows NT server 5.0, due early next year, would ship with a variant of CA's Unicenter TNG Framework in the box, the only third-party application to be bundled with the operating system. The move is only the latest in a series of deals between the two firms.

    "There's a real distinct philosophy we share with CA," Gates told a packed hall. "I think in the long run we are going to be beneficial to each other."

    The CEO also said the company is making strides in addressing the "scalability" of Windows NT, which refers to how many processors it can support in a single machine as well as within a cluster of computers. But he said reliability within the operating system so that it does not crash still needs improvement.

    "Reliability is one [thing] that is ever more important to us and will require our best work," he said.

    Gates and two of his employees also rolled out demonstrations of some of the services in NT 5.0 as well as the added CA functionality in NT 5.0. The problems that befell a Windows 98 demonstration last week, where a Windows 98-powered machine crashed during a demonstration, were alluded to, but the show-and-tell session went off without a hitch.

    During a question and answer session following Gates's speech, not one query was directed at the company's current legal battle with the federal government concerning its market practices.