by Rodney Gedda

Maritime Safety Authority CIO sticks with Oracle Sun hardware

Feb 08, 2011
Computers and PeripheralsGovernmentGovernment IT

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) will expand its Oracle Sun hardware and software installation and set up a supplier panel for future upgrades and support services, all with the blessing of the CIO.

AMSA is seeking to engage either a single preferred supplier or multiple suppliers in a “panel arrangement” for Oracle Sun Microsystems hardware, software and maintenance for five years.

This project will involve the procurement of additional equipment, as there is already a significant amount of Oracle Sun hardware and software installed at AMSA.

Based in Canberra, the AMSA is a federal government regulatory safety agency tasked with delivering services for maritime safety, aviation, marine search and rescue and protection of the marine environment.

AMSA has operations in every state and territory across Australia and in 2008 recruited a new CIO, Ewan Perrin, to manage its information services operations.

Perrin told CIO AMSA runs its critical support applications for the national Rescue Coordination Centre (RCC) on Solaris and Oracle “and a few other minor applications”.

Why is AMSA sticking with Solaris on SPARC when there are cheaper Intel and AMD (running Windows or Linux) systems available? Perrin says the platform is mature and mission-critical.

“AMSA has invested in Solaris/SPARC in the development of its 24 by 7 search and rescue support systems over the past few years,” he said.

“The platform is stable, mature and high-performing. AMSA will continue to leverage this investment in technology and internal skills, ensuring no disruption to search and rescue operations.”

Is Perrin happy with the roadmap of Sun hardware now that Oracle owns Sun?

“Happy? Hmm,” he says. “The acquisition of Sun was a good strategy from Oracle’s perspective and I am confident that Sun hardware will continue to be well supported by Oracle.”

Prior to the AMSA role, Perrin was executive manager of the program office at the CSIRO for four years.

As part of the project, AMSA is looking to procure between two and six SPARC64 quad-core servers, each with between one and four CPUs.

At the low-end, AMSA is pricing a SPARC Enterprise M3000 with one CPU and 16GB of memory, and at the high-end it is requesting quotes for Sun SPARC Enterprise M4000 systems with four CPUs and 64GB of memory.

The Australian arm of Sun Microsystems is now fully part of Oracle after the two companies merged in 2009.

The servers will run the Oracle Solaris 10 operating system with a standard installation and need to connect to an EMC CX3-40 SAN.

The initial contract is scheduled to begin in March, 2011.

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