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The growing popularity of 32-bit X86 platforms (based on processors from Intel Corp and Advanced Micro Devices, among a few other niche players like Transmeta and VIA Technologies) and the coming of age of 64-bit X86 platforms (from Intel and AMD) and the use of the Unix-alike Linux environment on these machines by companies who are trying to cut IT costs has forced Sun to try to move as much of the Solaris application portfolio to the X86 platform as it can, and as quickly as it can.
Area Virtual Environment X86 / X86-64; Number of sockets in each physical server 8; Subscription Level standard; Number of sockets in total 16
While none of the server makers wants to help Sun, if customers start clamoring for Solaris on X86, they will bite the bullet and get their machines certified to support it.