Solaris goes open-source

Sun Microsystems Inc. today confirmed long-rumored plans to make its proprietary Solaris operating system open-source.

Company president and chief operating officer Jonathan Schwartz, speaking today at SunNetwork Shanghai, said Sun intends to 'create a rich, open environment' around Solaris.

Sun spokeswoman Jessica Bookach said the company 'at this time is soliciting customer feedback in refining various aspects of the project.'

She said she could not discuss launch timing, licensing models or other details.

The success of Java showed that 'an open, collaborative development environment accelerates innovative products, solutions and services,' she said.

The move will leave AIX and HP-UX as the only major proprietary Unix operating systems. It also will pit Solaris against the various free and paid Linux versions. Sun and Microsoft last month announced an accord that could now mainly benefit proprietary 64-bit Windows.

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