Japan Gives OK to Sun Desktop Suite

The Japanese government has approved Sun Microsystems' open-source desktop software for use within one of its ministries, Sun is expected to announce.

Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry has endorsed Sun's Java Desktop System as an approved product for future bids, a Sun representative said Wednesday. The ministry is undergoing an evaluation of its current desktop software but has not yet committed to deploying JDS, the representative said.

JDS is a suite of open-source office desktop programs that includes the Linux operating system and the company's open-source StarOffice suite. Sun also sells versions of JDS for its Solaris operating system, and individual components, such as the browser and StarOffice, also run on Windows.

Sun charges $100 per user for the software, or $50 per user if JDS is deployed to all employees in an organization.

In a blog posting, Sun President Jonathan Schwartz said the Japanese ministry's interest in JDS validates Sun's strategy to pursue the desktop market. Making PCs more affordable, he said, will boost the number of PCs sold, which in turn will drive demand for Sun's back-end infrastructure software, servers and services.

News source: C|Net

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