Microsoft has changed focus in its war of attrition against Unix to Vars selling to internet service providers (ISPs) ? the traditional stronghold of Sun Microsystems ? but has had little success.
The software giant invited top resellers to a meeting at the company?s Redmond headquarters in the US last month to discuss the benefits of NT as an enterprise platform.
But the majority of Unix Vars felt the vendor did not understand the needs of the low-volume, high-value ISP market and have not sided with Microsoft.
Roy Howitt, sales director at ISP Easynet, said: ?Microsoft is creating lots of demand among SMEs renting Web space from a service provider through marketing for front-end extensions on hostings which have to be run on NT. It backs that up with free tech support and migration for ISPs. Sun just gives you a straight marcoms budget.?
But a representative of the Internet Service Provider?s Association said in light of the new wave of ISP consolidation, mid-range providers are scaling up their hardware. ?Large and middle-sized ISPs, anticipating a shake-out, are moving up the value chain to provide the infrastructure for a larger customer base. Nine times out of 10 this means Sparc servers.?
James Gardiner, marketing manager for the UK?s largest ISP, Demon Internet, said most ISPs used a mixture of Unix and NT, but for large-scale Web hosting Unix was still the platform of choice. But he added that for front-end applications such as video servers, NT may be more appropriate.
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