Moving into the IA-64 computing fray, Inprise/Borland Corp. in Scotts Valley, Calif. announced on Tuesday that it will port its tools to the 64-bit versions of Windows 2000 and Red Hat Inc. Linux, as they become available and Intel Corp. ships the Itanium chipset.
"Everybody will make their tools available for 64-bit; they have to do that if nothing else than just to keep up," said analyst Bill Claybrook, research director for Unix and Linux platforms at Aberdeen Group Inc., in Boston.
Analysts liken the move to 64-bit Windows and Linux to when Unix vendors began offering 64-bit versions of their operating systems. At first, some of the scientific and technical computation-heavy programs and database applications, such as data mining and data warehousing, really took advantage of 64-bit processing, but most applications were not capable of reaping its rewards.
"Companies have to have the tools for 64-bit because that's the wave of the future. If you look at the operating systems, that's where they're all going," Claybrook added.
Inprise says the new tools will enable companies that use Inprise's 32-bit tools to migrate their applications to IA-64-based systems. Customers also will be able to use Inprise tools to build and manage 64-bit applications for Windows and Red Hat Linux.
Tony de la Lama, vice president of Inprise's Java products group, said that Inprise is joining Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft Corp. and IBM Corp., in Armonk, N.Y., in supporting Intel's IA-64 architecture. Microsoft will release a version of 64-bit Windows shortly after Itanium is available. Most of the Linux distributors have also announced that they would offer versions of their operating systems for Santa Clara, Calif.-based Intel's 64-bit chip. Big Blue, for its part, will provide the Java run time.
"To make this platform a major enterprise player, Java has to be there, and IBM's going to step in and make that Java," de la Lama said.
Inprise is porting to 64-bit its JBuilder, Inprise Application Server, VisiBroker for Java, and JDataStore.