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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

MySQL AB and IBM Announce Open Source Database Support for the IBM System i Platform

MySQL Conference & Expo 2007 -- MySQL AB and IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced a joint technology and reseller agreement to bring support for the MySQL open source database to the IBM System i business computing platform.

The two companies will work together to offer the MySQL Server for i5/OS, the flagship operating system for System i, and plan to deliver DB2 for i5/OS as a certified MySQL storage engine on the System i platform. This will allow System i customers to implement online and transactional MySQL applications while storing all data in a single, easy-to-manage DB2 database.

In addition, MySQL Enterprise subscriptions -- a comprehensive offering of MySQL database software, services and support -- will be made available to IBM clients worldwide through IBM's reseller network and System i sales team. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

This morning's announcement was made at the 2007 MySQL Conference & Expo, being held this week at the Santa Clara Convention Center.

"IBM continues to innovate the System i platform with new investments in cutting-edge, open-source solutions. Today's news will make thousands of open source MySQL and PHP applications available to System i clients, helping them respond more quickly to business needs as they arise," said Mark Shearer, general manager IBM System i. "In addition, our customers will not only be able to deploy these applications with the support of IBM and MySQL, but -- thanks to the planned integration with our DB2 database storage engine for MySQL -- customers will continue to benefit from the integration and simplicity that System i consistently delivers."

"We are very pleased to work with IBM to bring two large, active hardware and software communities together around System i and MySQL," said Marten Mickos, MySQL AB's CEO. "As an IBM Business Partner, we hope this will open up an exciting new generation of online applications to take advantage of all the corporate data stored on one of the most reliable and secure platforms in the IT industry."

IBM becomes a member of the MySQL Certified Storage Engine Program ( With the planned DB2 storage engine for MySQL, System i customers will be able to run MySQL applications while continuing to manage their DB2 for i5/OS databases. It will plug into the MySQL Server and be managed as any other storage engine within the database server. The DB2 storage engine will provide superior storage management, transaction support, and database management for MySQL developers and DBAs -- and enable sharing of data between MySQL and DB2 applications.

About IBM

For more information about IBM, visit For more about System i, visit

About MySQL

MySQL AB develops and supports a family of high-performance, affordable database products. The company's flagship offering is 'MySQL Enterprise,' a comprehensive set of production-tested software, proactive monitoring tools, and premium support services.

MySQL is the world's most popular open source database software, with over 11 million active installations. Many of the world's largest and fastest-growing organizations use MySQL to save time and money powering their high-volume Web sites, business-critical systems and packaged software -- including industry leaders such as Yahoo!, Alcatel, The Associated Press, Suzuki and NASA.

With headquarters in the United States and Sweden -- and operations around the world -- MySQL AB supports both open source values and corporate customers' needs in a profitable, sustainable business model. For more information about MySQL, please visit

Monday, April 23, 2007

Sun Launches Online Sale to Celebrate 25 Years of Innovation

In celebration of its 25-year anniversary, Sun Microsystems (Nasdaq: SUNW) is offering exciting deals on its most popular and innovative products to help customers quickly and securely build, develop and deploy network computing solutions. For two weeks starting today, limited quantities of select award-winning products will be available at discounts of up to 65 percent as an anniversary gift to customers in the U.S. and U.K. Sale offerings include UltraSPARC and industry-standard Sun Fire servers, Sun StorageTek systems, services and software.

"Over the past 25 years, thousands of customers have built their businesses on Sun because of our exemplary value and investment protection," said Marsha Cavanagh, vice president of Lifecycle Marketing at Sun Microsystems, Inc. "On our 25th anniversary, we're further lowering the barriers to entry by featuring great promotional prices on some of our hottest products, offering them online where many of our customers prefer to purchase. In addition to rewarding our loyal customers, we want to introduce the next generation of companies to the innovation that has made Sun a leader in network computing."

Sun technologies—offering customers excellent value as well as processor platform and Operating System (OS) choice—will be available at unprecedented promotional prices online at The promotion enables both new and existing customers to quickly and easily engage with Sun's most powerful technologies, including the Solaris OS. Sale highlights include:

Systems: 50 percent off the Sun Fire x4500, the industry's first data server; up to 50 percent off the Sun Fire x4600, the world's first 16-way modular x64 server; up to 60 percent off Sun Fire CoolThreads systems, the most energy-efficient, high-performance systems on the market; and up to 50 percent off high-performance x64/x86 and SPARC workstations.
Storage: Up to 65 percent off leading NAS systems such as the Sun StorageTek 5320 and 5220 NAS Appliances.
Services: Sun offers lower-cost training and high-quality services, including Solaris Subscriptions priced less than commercial Linux; 40 percent off a service plan with the SunSpectrum Instant Upgrade program; and 25 percent off most Solaris support subscriptions.
Software: Sun's Solaris OS is available free at anytime and is supported on the broadest set of x86 and UltraSPARC platforms, making it the strategic OS of choice. Customers can easily develop applications with free Sun development tools such as Sun Studio and NetBeans software.
"Sun is always looking for creative ways to reach new and existing customers, through programs such as Try and Buy and Sun Startup Essentials," said Cavanagh. "Our anniversary sale is intended to attract new customers, encourage migration off competing platforms, and expand our footprint into broader markets."

Sun also launched a Web site ( honoring the company's quarter-century of innovation, with videos from CEO Jonathan Schwartz and Chairman and Co-founder Scott McNealy; historical timelines; photos; a virtual scrapbook of memories from Sun's 25 years; and more.

Founded in 1982 and led throughout its history by the guiding principle "The Network is the Computer," Sun has pioneered an abundance of technologies that have helped customers grow their businesses on the network: from Java and Solaris to ultra-thin clients; from network storage to open source software. Now Sun is poised for another 25 years of innovation, delivering new open, eco responsible network computing technologies to help empower the people that will push the boundaries of participation on the network.

During its 25 years in business, Sun has built a massive network of customers, partners, developers, employees, alumni and other advocates. Sun now operates in more than 100 countries around the world and supports an ecosystem of more than 20,000 channel partners, Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs), System Integrators (SIs) and Independent Software Vendors (ISVs). More than 5 million developers code in Java, supporting more than 4 billion personal computers, mobile phones and other devices worldwide that run Java applications.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

New Intel Tools Help Developers Create, Debug And Tune Applications For Windows Vista And Latest Multi-Core Processors

Intel Corporation today announced the availability of new versions of its Intel® Thread Checker, Intel® Thread Profiler, Intel® VTune™ Performance Analyzer and Intel® Threading Building Blocks. These software development products enable developers to create more reliable, scalable applications, and have now been enhanced for the latest multi-core processors – Intel® Core™ 2 Extreme QX6800 and Intel® Core™ 2 Quad Q6600 – and newest operating systems - Microsoft Vista*, Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise*, Red Hat Enterprise Linux* and Fedora Core*.

"Our Intel Core 2 processors have essential new profiling capabilities we're taking advantage of for the first time in our VTune Analyzer 9.0. Since nearly all systems shipping with Windows Vista will be multi-core systems, developers targeting Vista have been asking us for these parallelism tools," said James Reinders, director of marketing for Intel's Developer Products Division. "Developers on all operating systems want their move to parallelism well supported by development tools and we're committed to keeping up with our aggressive pace of supporting developers in as many ways as possible."

Performing multiple tasks simultaneously is referred to as "running in parallel." Parallelism is accessed in hardware and operating systems with the concept of threads of execution that are easier to program when abstracted into the software concepts of data and task parallelism. Intel Software Development products are the latest example of the company's commitment to simplify parallel programming and represent an efficient way for development teams to prepare applications for multi-core processors. These products ensure threaded applications are scaleable, reliable and optimized for current and future processor innovations.

Intel Thread Checker 3.1 for Windows and Linux detects errors in the coding of parallelism so that developers can introduce threading more safely and quickly. With its patented advanced error protection engine, the product provides "thread safety" by identifying the most obscure threading errors in 64-bit applications. This tool is enhanced with optimized performance for lower instrumented image size and runtime overhead, which gives developers even faster analysis.

Intel Thread Profiler 3.1 for Windows provides developers with insight into how application threads behave and pinpoints parallel performance issues such as bottlenecks. It allows developers to measure the number of cores that are effectively utilized by the application and indicates the percentage of the code that is not optimally parallelized for the hardware platform on which the application is running. This updated version now offers selectable stackwalking for much faster analysis and display, and is easier to use repeatedly through support for automatic recall of custom configuration settings within an activity. This updated product increases consistency and saves developers time on repetitive tasks.

Intel Threading Building Blocks 1.1 for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X is a C++ template library that simplifies introducing threads to an application, making performance gains possible while shielding software developers from the low-level complexity of assigning threads to processor cores. It enables developers to write an application once that automatically recognizes the number of available cores and scales performance appropriately. This enhanced version includes an automatic grain size calculator for optimal algorithm parallelization.

Intel VTune Performance Analyzer 9.0 is a solution that helps developers run their software faster on single and multi-core systems. Vista users now have full support, including Intel's new signed driver, which will install without Vista blocking for security concerns. Intel Core 2 Duo and Quad processors have significantly enhanced performance analysis capabilities and support more events, higher precision in event location correlation and an innovative new pipeline stall accounting. The stall accounting features radically improve tuning by focusing the user on instances of possible issues, such as cache misses.

VTune 9.0 for Linux offers a new connection between the Intel compiler's analysis and VTune run time analysis of hotspots. This new version contains an intuitive hotspot navigator that enables developers to scroll to the source from hotspot to hotspot. This allows users to identify hotspots and benefit from the knowledge built into the Intel compiler.

Pricing and Availability

Intel VTune Performance Analyzer 9.0, Intel Threading Building Blocks 1.1, Intel Thread Checker 3.1 and Intel Thread Profiler 3.1 are available today. Suggested pricing for the products: Intel VTune 9.0 $699; Intel Threading Building Blocks 1.1 for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X operating systems $299; Intel Thread Checker 3.1 for Windows and Linux $999 and $499, respectively; and Intel Thread Profiler 3.1 for Windows $299.

Intel provides software products, training, resources, technologies and services software developers need to create innovative products and industry-leading software solutions that run best on Intel platforms. Intel offers a complete line of software development products, including compilers, libraries and analysis tools, which enable developers to get more performance out of their systems and applications. Intel software developer products offer industry leading support for parallel programming for systems of all sizes. For more information, visit

Sun Microsystems Announces OpenSolaris as Industry's Most Comprehensive Multi-Vendor Storage Operating System

Sun Microsystems, Inc. (Nasdaq: SUNW) today announced it is donating storage technologies for storage developers within the OpenSolaris community. This will enable community members to combine OpenSolaris with hardware from any source to create compelling storage solutions at a fraction of the price of traditional proprietary storage vendors. This combination of open source and commodity hardware heralds a new stage in the storage industry.

Sun is taking the lead in creating a community-driven software development platform that speeds time-to-market for storage application development and which better addresses customers' ever-evolving data management and archiving needs. Sun is donating the source code to the Storage community at which will feature email forums, design documents and open source code.

"Just as free and open source code has changed the way server and desktop operating systems are developed, evaluated and deployed, today marks a big step in repeating this model for storage software technology," said Rich Green, executive vice president, Software, Sun Microsystems. "Sun is taking the lead in changing the market by enabling the creation of compelling low-cost storage solutions via the free and open availability of open source software, including Solaris, on commodity hardware from a wide-range of vendors including HP, Dell, IBM, and Sun."

Today Sun also announced the previously Sun-only flexible administration features of Solaris ZFS will be donated to OpenSolaris. ZFS is a dynamic file system which simplifies management and adds functionality. The features donated include:

  • ZFS Clone Promotion feature, which allows storage users to turn a clone back into the active file system;

  • Recursive Snapshots feature, which automatically creates snapshots for all descendent file systems.

  • Double Parity RAIDZ, a data protection enhancement to that provides storage users with enough protection so that no data will
    be lost if up to two devices fail

  • Hot Spares for ZFS Storage Pool Devices, data protection disks that can replace failed or faulted devices, eliminating downtime
    after disk failure.

Sun and its partners are also introducing the following storage technologies into the OpenSolaris Storage community:

  • Point-in-Time Copy data service and Remote Mirror data service - allows volumes and their snapshots to be replicated between physically different servers. Includes filter-driver framework and utilities. This is the first commercial version of replication software that has been open sourced;

  • NFS v4.1 (also known as parallel NFS) -- provides scalable parallel access to files distributed among multiple servers;

  • YANFS (formerly known as WebNFS) - Java implementation of the client side of the XDR, RPC, NFSv2, and NFSv3 protocols;

  • iSCSI device drivers -- provides both the initiator and target support for the IETF iSCSI protocol which allows the use of the SCSI protocol over TCP/IP networks;

  • OSD device drivers and related software -- provides both initiator and target support for storage devices that adhere to the SCSI Object-Based Storage Device (OSD) command protocol;

  • QLogic Fibre Channel HBA driver – The QLogic QLC driver enables booting from internal and external Fibre Channel devices and are now a part of OpenSolaris, making Sun’s stack of drivers which facilitate I/O activity to host bus adapters open from top to bottom – a first in the world of open storage;

OpenSolaris already provides an extensive array of storage software including a native CIFS client, UFS, Solaris Volume Manager, Traffic Manager (multipathing I/O support), a complete Fibre Channel framework with drivers, as well as traditional target drivers. Please see for the entire list. Sun also has plans to open source the following technologies in the coming months: Sun StorageTek QFS shared file system, Sun StorageTek Storage Archive Manager, Sun StorageTek 5800 client interfaces and simulator/server and other storage-related technologies.

OpenSolaris Launches The First Open Source Storage Development Community
The new Storage community on will help give developers a quicker way to deploy data-intensive applications. The community includes developers adding data management functionality and customizing the storage stack for new applications and platforms; system administrators implementing Solaris technology in data centers; educators and students researching data management in universities; and new users exploring the technology and discovering that OpenSolaris offers new opportunities. Application developers that adopt OpenSolaris as a storage platform can now utilize and enhance their existing data services and have the means to develop their own data services.

Further details on Sun's Storage family can be found at

Halo 3 Multiplayer Beta Hits Xbox LIVE Worldwide on May 16

Microsoft Game Studios and Bungie Studios today confirmed the multiplayer beta of “Halo® 3” will debut to audiences worldwide via Xbox LIVE® on May 16 at 5 a.m. PDT and run through June 6 at 11:59 p.m. PDT. Coming exclusively to the Xbox 360™ console this fall, “Halo 3” is the highly anticipated third chapter in the groundbreaking “Halo” trilogy from legendary developers Bungie. “Halo 3” lets gamers experience Master Chief’s greatest battle as he launches an epic mission to stop the Covenant, destroy the impending Flood threat and ultimately save mankind.

Made possible through Microsoft Corp.’s Xbox LIVE gaming and entertainment network, which provides a robust online service for more than 6 million gamers worldwide, the multiplayer beta for “Halo 3” will give anxious Xbox 360 gamers their first opportunity to get their hands on the new levels, weapons, vehicles and game types, as well as a chance to provide valuable data that Bungie will use in continued development. Starting May 16, gamers who secured their admission to the multiplayer beta either through the “Rule of Three” promotion or by purchasing a specially marked copy of “Crackdown™” for Xbox 360 will be able to don their Spartan armor, download the beta on Xbox LIVE, and jump online using their Xbox LIVE Gold account* to battle other gamers from around the world.

When gamers gather online to play the multiplayer beta via Xbox LIVE in May, they will be treated to three richly detailed, action-oriented maps: Snowbound, High Ground and Valhalla, which represent a mixture of large- and medium-scale combat environments and are brand-new to “Halo 3.” Each map will test gamers’ mettle as they are placed behind the controls of new “Halo 3” vehicles such as the agile Mongoose all-terrain vehicle, and armed with deadly weapons such as the new and improved Assault Rifle, the ferocious Brute Spiker, the devastating Spartan Laser and the treacherous new Spike Grenades. This is just a taste of what gamers will experience later this fall when “Halo 3” goes on sale.

“‘Halo: Combat Evolved’ and ‘Halo 2’ changed the face of console gaming forever,” said Shane Kim, corporate vice president of Microsoft Game Studios. “Gamers from around the world have logged more than 800 million hours on Xbox LIVE playing ‘Halo 2,’ and years after its launch it remains the No. 1 title on our Xbox LIVE network. Bringing an early look at the multiplayer elements of ‘Halo 3’ to our passionate fan base is tremendously exciting for us.”

Gamers worldwide who did not participate in the “Rule of Three” promotion but are interested in joining the multiplayer beta of “Halo 3” can still participate through the purchase of the critically acclaimed Xbox 360 title “Crackdown,” which was launched in February. “Crackdown” sets players loose in a free-form, persistent city for action-packed crime fighting that requires a bigger, faster and stronger hero that evolves as a more efficient weapon through continued gameplay. Each copy of “Crackdown” has been specially marked with a “Halo 3” beta sticker prior to the beta period, and starting May 16 the game will act as a key for gamers to download and participate in the “Halo 3” multiplayer beta.

In addition, gamers who can’t wait for the multiplayer beta this May can get an even earlier look at “Halo 3” with a new, behind-the-scenes video feature available at and in high definition over Xbox LIVE Marketplace. Starting today, viewers can go behind the scenes at Bungie Studios to learn about the people, technology and process that are making “Halo 3” an unforgettable multiplayer experience, and to get a taste of what to expect from the upcoming “Halo 3” multiplayer beta. The latest multiplayer video documentary, titled “Is Quisnam Protero Damno!,” will offer a glimpse at how “Halo 3” multiplayer maps are being designed, built and architected, and how these amazing spaces are converted into fun places in which to play. Gamers can also catch the first-ever glimpse of brand-new “Halo 3” multiplayer levels in their early stages of evolution and construction.

About Bungie Studios

Bungie Studios was founded in 1991 with two goals: to develop games that combine brilliant technology, beautiful art, intelligent stories and deep gameplay, and then sell enough of those games to achieve its real goal of total world domination. Over the past 10 years it has produced games such as the “Marathon Trilogy” and the first two “Myth” games, hailed as classics by critics and gamers around the world. Bungie’s “Halo” franchise is an international award-winning action title that has grown into a global entertainment phenomenon, selling more than 14.7 million units worldwide, logging over 800 million hours of multiplayer action on Xbox LIVE and spawning action figures, books, a graphic novel, apparel and more. Bungie is currently at work on “Halo 3,” which represents the third chapter in this “Halo” trilogy and is slated for release in 2007. More information on Bungie can be found at

About Microsoft Game Studios

Microsoft Game Studios is a leading worldwide publisher and developer of games for the Xbox® and Xbox 360 video game systems, the Windows® operating system and online platforms. Comprising a network of top developers, Microsoft Game Studios is committed to creating innovative and diverse games for Windows (, including such franchises as “Age of Empires®,” “Flight Simulator” and “Zoo Tycoon®”; Xbox and Xbox 360 (, including such games as “Gears of War” and franchises such as “Halo,” “Fable®,” “Project Gotham Racing®” and “Forza Motorsport®”; and MSN® Games (, the official games channel for the MSN network and home to such hits as “Bejeweled” and “Hexic®.”

Monday, April 09, 2007

Intel Delivers Its Fastest Enthusiast Quad-Core Processor

Intel Corporation today advanced its enthusiast-level quad-core processor family with the introduction of the Intel® Core™ 2 Extreme processor QX6800, the company's twelfth quad-core processor offering. Running at 2.93 GHz -- the fastest native clock speed yet reached with the Intel® Core™ microarchitecture for the quad-core desktop -- this addition to Intel's innovative processor family sets new standards for desktop PC performance. The Intel Core 2 Extreme processor QX6800 is ideal for those gamers, digital design professionals and enthusiasts who crave the highest performing computers they can get their hands on.

At the recent Game Developer's Conference* in San Francisco, several software developers demonstrated new games that have been "threaded" to take advantage of multiple processor cores and threads. This increased performance can help deliver smoother gameplay, more realistic game effects and more lifelike artificial intelligence. Some of the most exciting titles of the year such as Crytek’s Crysis*, Gas Powered Games’ Supreme Commander* and Flagship's Hellgate London* have undergone substantial joint engineering efforts with Intel to use more than two processing threads to their advantage.

One of the first games ever developed for the PC is also entering the quad-core era. "The latest version of Microsoft Flight Simulator* X, Service Pack One (SP1), due out later this month, is a great match for the extreme multi-core processing delivered by the new Intel Core 2 Extreme quad-core processor," said Phil Taylor, Flight Sim Program Manager, Microsoft Game Studios. "Flight Sim X SP1 greatly increases multicore utilization and will scale as more threads are available leading to reduced load times as well as frame rate improvements and greater visual complexity during flight. The Flight Simulator team at Microsoft is pleased to work with Intel to provide our end users with a great gaming experience."

In addition to delivering adrenaline to hardcore gamers, the Intel Core 2 Extreme processor QX6800 is also being embraced by media users and developers. Adobe*, Cakewalk*, DivX*, Sony Creative Software* and dozens of other developers have delivered applications that use all four cores, enabling media professionals to do what they do best-- capture creativity quickly and reliably. For example, the Intel Core 2 Extreme quad-core processor QX6800 is up to 65% faster1 than the Intel Core 2 Extreme dual-core processor X6800 on video encoding. This is a key capability as more households are recording and editing high-definition video to capture, preserve and share memories.

"The performance and technology leadership we are delivering with our enthusiast quad-core processor lineup is a direct result of the reliability provided by Intel's manufacturing and engineering strength," said Eric Kim, senior vice president and general manager of Intel's Digital Home Group. "This translates to user benefits such as better gameplay with more intelligent computer-generated opponents and less wait time for demanding high-definition media editing."

The Intel Core 2 Extreme processor QX6800 is produced on Intel's industry-leading 65 nanometer process, key to enabling the large 8 megabyte cache. A 1066 MHz system bus is supported and the processor is available now at a cost of $1,199.

* Other brands may be claimed as the property of others.

1 1 MainConcept* H.264 Encoder v2.1 using input file 30sec long, 1920x1080 HD mpeg2 video clip with a bitrate of about 18000kpbs. Output is H.264 format video encoded at 6000 kbps. Details and system specs at

100 Million iPods Sold

Apple® today announced that the 100 millionth iPod® has been sold, making the iPod the fastest selling music player in history. The first iPod was sold five and a half years ago, in November 2001, and since then Apple has introduced more than 10 new iPod models, including five generations of iPod, two generations of iPod mini, two generations of iPod nano and two generations of iPod shuffle. Along with iTunes® and the iTunes online music store, the iPod has transformed how tens of millions of music lovers acquire, manage and listen to their music.

“At this historic milestone, we want to thank music lovers everywhere for making iPod such an incredible success,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “iPod has helped millions of people around the world rekindle their passion for music, and we’re thrilled to be a part of that.”

“It’s hard to remember what I did before the iPod,” said Mary J. Blige, GRAMMY Award-winning singer. “iPod is more than just a music player, it’s an extension of your personality and a great way to take your favorite music with you everywhere you go.”

“Without the iPod, the digital music age would have been defined by files and folders instead of songs and albums,” said John Mayer, GRAMMY Award-winning singer-songwriter and guitarist. “Though the medium of music has changed, the iPod experience has kept the spirit of what it means to be a music lover alive."

The iPod has also sparked an unprecedented ecosystem of over 4,000 accessories made specifically for the iPod that range from fashionable cases to speaker systems, and more than 70 percent of 2007-model US automobiles currently offer iPod connectivity.

“I take my running shoes and my iPod with me everywhere,” said Lance Armstrong, seven-time Tour de France champion. “I listen to music when I run. Having my music with me is really motivating.”

Every iPod features seamless integration with iTunes 7. The iTunes Store ( features the world’s largest catalog with over five million songs, 350 television shows and over 400 movies. The iTunes Store has sold over 2.5 billion songs, 50 million TV shows and over 1.3 million movies, making it the world’s most popular online music, TV and movie store.