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Sun promotes Java on Cobalt servers

The company introduces a developer kit for its Cobalt servers that it says makes it easier to use Java software on servers that deliver Web pages.

SAN FRANCISCO--Sun Microsystems has released software to make special-purpose servers that use Sun's Java to run programs.

Sun introduced a developer kit for its Cobalt servers that makes it easier to use Java software on servers that deliver Web pages, the company said Monday at its JavaOne conference here. The software combines Sun's Java software--which lets programs run on many different computers without having to be changed for each one--with the movement to create special-purpose "server appliances."

The software kit comes with features that let the servers run Java programs called servlets and deliver custom Web pages using the Java Server Pages software, Sun said. These technologies are built into an open-source software package called Tomcat that ships with new Cobalt servers.

The software is a free download that works on Cobalt computers.

Sun acquired Cobalt in 2000, a tacit recognition that its own low-end servers weren't selling well enough in the market for housing Web pages. Cobalt machines use the Linux operating system running on MIPS, AMD and, increasingly, Intel chips; Sun's servers use Solaris running on UltraSparc chips.