UK software specialist Open Computing will be authorised to ship Compaq Intel-based ProLiant servers with pre-installed UnixWare to resellers next month.
Open Computing will be the first distributor authorised to sell both Compaq hardware and SCO's Unix operating systems for the Intel platform - UnixWare and its predecessor, OpenServer. The move will also be the first foray into hardware for Open Computing, which has a portfolio including Informix, Sybase, Chase Research, Computer Associates and Business Objects.
Compaq previously shipped copies of SCO UnixWare with ProLiant servers as part of its SmartStart program - which included NT, NetWare and SCO - which helped the vendor get around SCO's reluctance to authorise Compaq's existing broadband distributors to supply its products.
SmartStart was canned in November for logistical reasons, according to Rhys Austin, product manager for Intel servers at Compaq, and because of a perception in the channel that the vendor was shipping a proprietary version of the OS.
Since then, resellers have had to buy the hardware from distributors such as CHS and Ingram Micro, and the software from distributors Sphinx CST and Ilion, or sub-distributors Open Computing and UniDirect.
Compaq and Open Computing will target ISVs developing applications for the SCO platform, to gain customers in niche markets.
Compaq's partnership with Open will put the vendor on an equal footing with IBM, which authorised leading SCO UnixWare and OpenServer distributor Sphinx CST for its Intel-based Netfinity servers late last year.
Attacking Compaq's dominance of the SCO reseller base is a priority for IBM, which is using its position as co-developer of UnixWare's 64-bit successor project Monterey to recruit SCO/Netfinity resellers.
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