Compaq to roll out Zero Latency Enterprise suite

PC stalwart Compaq is looking to apply its enterprise systems muscle to playing the role of key platform supplier for businesses with high-volume transactional requirements.

After months of demonstrations and proofs of concept, the systems giant is rolling out its so-called Zero Latency Enterprise (ZLE) systems - hardware, software, and services bundles aimed at hosting high-end, transaction-intensive applications.

Compaq has targeted such vertical industry segments as telecommunications, dot-coms, financial services and insurance.

The ZLE architecture - which runs on Compaq's ProLiant, Tru64 Unix, and NonStop Himalaya systems - includes the company's NonStop middleware that conforms to the Object Management Group's (OMG's) CORBA; CORBA-compliant Java objects, IBM's MQSeries messaging software, a variety of transaction processing monitors, and other application integration software; and an operational data store, according to company officials.

Compaq is in the process of rolling out initial commercial implementations of the high-performance, high-availability systems, according to Thomas Rohner, chief component architect.

According to Rohner, Compaq is also working to pave the way for mixed configurations of ProLiant, True64 and Himalaya servers.

"ZLE hubs could run on just ProLiant, True64 or Himalaya servers, but users are more likely to mix and match," Rohner said.

Earlier this month at the OMG meeting, Compaq demonstrated a CORBA application simulating a high-volume telecommunications system that supported transaction rates on the order of 100,000 CORBA transactions per second.

The next phase in Compaq's ZLE plan is to open the architecture to support other vendors' object request brokers (ORBs), such as those from Iona and Inprise, to more thoroughly exploit the company's True64 systems and to beef up its professional services offerings for the architecture, according to Rohner.

The company will also add support for the CORBA 3.0 specification by the end of next year, according to Rohner.

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