SunSelect Introduces Wabi Software, Bringing Microsoft(R) Windows Applications into the UNIX(R) System Environment
USL, SCO and SunSoft to implement technology; USL forms co-development partnership with SunSelect
CHELMSFORD, May 5, SunSelect, the PC integration business of Sun Microsystems, Inc., today introduced the first technology that allows Microsoft. Windows applications to run directly on UNIX.-based PCs and workstations at full performance without the need for MS-DOS or Microsoft Windows itself. Named Wabi, the software gives UNIX system users the ability to run the most popular Microsoft Windows applications on the most powerful open network computing environment.
"The Wabi technology represents a giant step in making UNIX broadly acceptable to the commercial marketplace," said Dave Power, general manager of SunSelect. "For the first time, users can run their favorite Microsoft Windows applications at full speed while still accessing the rich resources of the UNIX environment."
SunSelect will license Wabi to leading UNIX operating system vendors. Companies planning to implement Wabi as a part of their respective UNIX system offerings include UNIX System Laboratories (USL), The Santa Cruz Operation (SCO) and SunSoft.
SunSelect has formed a co-development agreement with USL to build key components of the Wabi technology. "We are making a major engineering commitment to this project, and view Wabi as a key element of our UNIX strategy," said Don McGovern, vice president of USL. "The technology dramatically advances open systems by enabling customers to take advantage of both their Microsoft Windows and UNIX system applications, without depending on a single vendor."
In addition, several other vendors, including Toshiba, Fujitsu Limited, NCD, Tadpole Technology, and Quarterdeck Office Systems, have endorsed Wabi as a way to broaden the choice of software available to their customers.
Wabi is based on technology acquired by SunSelect from Praxsys Technologies, Inc. (Norwood, Mass.) in September 1992. SunSelect has also entered into an agreement with Bitstream Inc. (Cambridge, Mass.), under which SunSelect will license Bitstream's font handling technology to make a large selection of TrueType fonts available to Wabi vendors. As a result, Wabi users will have the same access as Microsoft Windows users to Bitstream's library of more than 600 scalable TrueType fonts.
From Microsoft Windows to X Windows
The Wabi software will enable UNIX system users to run Microsoft Windows applications right out of the box. Additionally, those applications become part of the UNIX as easily accessible as any UNIX allowing users to cut and paste text between Microsoft Windows and UNIX applications. For example, information queried from a UNIX-based database management system or received via an email message can be incorporated within a presentation document created with Microsoft PowerPoint. or CorelDRAW!.. The user simply utilizes the cut-and-paste facility built into X Windows, the open systems standard for displaying graphical elements on networked computers and terminals.
While other products permit Microsoft Windows applications to run under the UNIX system, they do so by running MS-DOS and Microsoft Windows in an emulation environment, a feat that requires considerable system resources, reducing application performance. By contrast, Wabi translates the function calls made by a Microsoft Windows application into those recognizable by X Windows. This approach consumes much less processing power, permitting Microsoft Windows applications to run with no compromise in performance.
Support for leading Microsoft Windows applications
Major application vendors, including Lotus Development Corporation, Borland International, WordPerfect Corporation, and Corel Corporation, have recognized the Wabi product as an innovative way to make their Microsoft Windows applications available to new users.
"Wabi is a strong bridge between UNIX and Microsoft Windows, and broadens customer's options, allowing end-users to run desktop applications like 1-2-3. for Windows and Lotus Freelance Graphics on a wider range of platforms," said Jim Manzi, president and chief executive officer of Lotus Development Corporation.
The most popular Microsoft Windows applications on the market are being certified to run on Wabi. These programs, which together represent about two-thirds of all Microsoft Windows applications sold, include Lotus 1-2-3 for Windows, Lotus AmiPro, Microsoft Word for Windows, Microsoft Excel., Microsoft PowerPoint, Microsoft Project for Windows, WordPerfect. for Windows, Harvard Graphics for Windows from Software Publishing Corporation, Aldus PageMaker., PROCOMM PLUS for Windows from Datastorm Technologies, Inc., CorelDRAW!., Paradox. for Windows and Quattro Pro for Windows from Borland. International, Inc., as well as the complete set of Microsoft Windows 3.1 accessories.
Ongoing certification program
SunSelect, USL and other partners will continue to test and certify other Microsoft Windows packages for the Wabi environment. To increase the library of applications compatible with the Wabi software, SunSelect is establishing a self- certification program for developers. Through the program, available in June, developers can receive a free preview copy of Wabi, enabling them to conduct compatibility testing during the course of application development. SunSelect and its partners will also work with developers to make Wabi as broadly compatible as possible.
Availability and pricing
SunSelect will make release 1.0 of Wabi available to its licensing partners this summer. Each vendor will announce its own plans for packaging, pricing, and availability.
Windows Applications To Run On Solaris
SunSoft To Copackage Wabi With Solaris
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., May 5, 1993 -- SunSoft, Inc. today announced that it will copackage SunSelect's Wabi technology with the Solaris software environment, enabling users to run Windows applications with no performance compromise. The Wabi technology was recently demonstrated running Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word and Microsoft PowerPoint for Windows on Solaris at SunSoft's Annual Solaris Developer Conference.
"Wabi coupled with Solaris gives users the best of both worlds -- the power of UNIX with the range of Microsoft applications," said Edward J. Zander, president of SunSoft. "Now users can run their spreadsheet on Wabi and their business on Solaris."
Solaris users will initially be able to run key Windows applications that account for about two-thirds of the applications sold in the PC market. These include Lotus 1-2-3 for Windows, Lotus AmiPro, Microsoft Word for Windows, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint, Microsoft Project for Windows, WordPerfect for Windows, Harvard Grahics for Windows from Software Publishing Corp., Aldus Pagemaker, PROCOMM PLUS for Windows from Datastorm Technologies, Inc., CorelDraw, and Paradox for Windows from Borland International, and the complete set of Microsoft Windows 3.1 accessories. Wabi will be certified to run additional applications later in the year.
SunSoft will begin a promotional offer for Wabi this month. Customers of Solaris for x86 and Solaris 2.2 for SPARC will receive a coupon with their product redeemable for the Wabi technology at no extra cost. The offer will extend through December. In addition, the Wabi technology will also be copackaged with SunSoft's INTERACTIVE UNIX product line by the end of the year. INTERACTIVE UNIX is SunSoft's product targeted at the low end multiuser x86 marketplace.
SunSoft's Solaris environment is designed to combine the features of high performance computing -- such as multiprocessing, multithreading, installation, administration and network security -- with the ease-of-use of personal computers, making it the rightsizing solution of choice for global enterprises. It is available on the highest volume RISC and CISC architectures, SPARC and x86, and will soon be delivered on the new PowerPC platform. More than 7,500 32-bit applications -- the largest base in the world -- run on Solaris today.
Product inquiries should be directed to SunSoft at 510-460-3267 in the United States and to local SunSoft offices in Europe and Asia.
(c)1993 Sun Microsystems, Inc. SPARC is a registered trademark of SPARC International, Inc.
Solaris, Sun Microsystems, Sun, SunSelect, SunSoft, the Sun logo, the SunSelect logo, Wabi are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sun Microsystems, Inc.
Aldus is a trademark and PageMaker is a registered trademark of Aldus Corp. All other products or service names mentioned herein are trademarks of their respective owners. Borland and Paradox are registered trademarks, and Quatro Pro is a trademark of Borland International, Inc. CorelDRAW! is a trademark of Corel Corporation. Harvard Graphics and Software Publishing Corporation are registered trademarks of Software Publishing Corporation. Lotus and 1-2-3 are registered trademarks and AmiPro is a trademark of Lotus Development Corporation. Microsoft, MS-DOS, Excel and PowerPoint are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation. PROCOMM PLUS is a trademark of DATASTORM TECHNOLOGIES, INC. TrueType is a trademark of Apple Computer, Inc. WordPerfect is a registered trademark of WordPerfect Corporation.
UNIX is a registered trademark of UNIX System Laboratories, Inc.