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Sun makes room for Jxta

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CNET News.com
January 28, 2004, 2:05 PM PT

Sun Microsystems is planning to incorporate software developed through its peer-to-peer computing initiative, Project Jxta, into its commercial software products.

Jxta software provides "plumbing" between networked machines to make communication easier, bypassing a central server and allowing computers and devices to automatically detect each other and share information directly. For the past three years, it has been developed as an open-source project backed by Sun, and has been used by several third-party software makers in their products.

Now Sun is devising plans to slip Jxta tools into its own server and desktop product lines, Ingrid Van Den Hoogen, the company's director of software marketing, told CNET News.com on Tuesday. In the next year or two, Sun will incorporate aspects of Jxta in its Java Desktop System, a set of open-source desktop applications based on Linux, and in its Java Enterprise System Java server software bundle, she said.

"There are some very simple things we could do (with Jxta), such as extending the Java Desktop System to be more collaborative and offer peer-to-peer features," said Van Den Hoogen. Sun has approached customers to find out the best way to utilize Jxta in its products, she said.

Sun's Java server line will also take on some peer-computing capabilities from Jxta, according to company executives. It could be used to improve the management and scalability of products such as Sun's portal or its calendar server, executives said.

By making servers act as peers, rather than having them controlled by a central server, companies will be able to more easily offload processing load from one server to another, said Juan Soto, the director of Sun's advanced technology group

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