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Oracle bets big on Windows NT

Oracle plans to port all of its core products to Windows NT 4.0, beginning this fall.

Oracle today said it will make all of its core products available on Microsoft's Windows NT 4.0 in what many analysts see as yet another sign that NT is threatening Unix as the corporate application server operating system of choice.

Oracle, which was the first vendor outside of Microsoft itself to ship a native NT database server, will deliver its Oracle7 database server, WebServer, application development tools, collaboration software, applications, online analytical processing (OLAP) tools, and middleware on NT 4.0 running on Intel, Digital Alpha, and PowerPC hardware beginning this fall.

Two years ago, Oracle formed a workgroup products division to market NT software as an adjunct to the company's mainstream Unix business, which has traditionally accounted for the bulk of the company's revenue. But Oracle has folded the workgroup division into its core business as NT sales continue to climb and make up a larger percentage of Oracle's revenue.

Oracle will ship Personal, Workgroup, and Enterprise versions of Oracle7 on NT 4.0 in October. WebServer 2.0, already available on NT 3.5, will debut on NT 4.0 by year's end. Development tools, including the company's Power Objects and Developer/2000 tools, will also ship on NT 4.0 by year's end. In October, an NT 4.0 version of Oracle InterOffice is due. Oracle Applications for NT 4.0 are scheduled for early 1997. Oracle's Express OLAP server for NT 4.0 will ship in September.

The company also plans to ship versions of its Oracle Parallel Server parallel processing database on clustered Windows NT systems. A two-node clustered version of the database is expected to ship by year's end. Support for four-node clusters is on tap for early 1997.

Oracle's competitors, including Informix Software, Sybase, and IBM have also stepped up NT product development in the past months in anticipation of NT 4.0, which shipped this summer. The new version of NT includes advanced networking features that make it a viable alternative to Unix as an application server operating system.

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