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-- by Joseph C. Panettieri
Just as Windows NT Server gains mass acceptance, Compaq Computer has decided not to sell the Microsoft operating system on its latest server. The apparent reason: cost. It's an odd decision, to say the least.
Compaq's new ProLiant 800, a server positioned for file, print and application services, comes with SmartStart 3.20, the latest upgrade to Compaq's server software bundle. SmartStart 3.20, in turn, includes Novell IntranetWare (a rebranded NetWare 4.11 with bundled Web software), and a vast library of applications for NetWare and Windows NT, such as Raptor's Eagle NT firewall and Cheyenne's InocuLAN antivirus software for NT. About the only popular server software SmartStart 3.20 doesn't include is Windows NT Server. Previous SmartStart releases did include NT.
Some high-technology analysts speculate that Compaq must be trying to keep NT support costs in check. After all, if a customer buys NT from a reseller rather than from Compaq, it's the reseller that will likely receive the support inquiries.
Difference of opinion
Compaq claims otherwise. "Customers simply prefer to buy NT off-the-shelf," said John Young, director of marketing and business operations for Compaq's servers.
To be sure, Compaq's new ProLiant 800 can run NT. But you'll need to buy it somewhere else.
Copyright (c) 1997 CMP Media Inc.