Tahoe now called SharePoint

Microsoft Corp.’s enterprise portal product, once code-named Tahoe, will now be known as SharePoint Portal Server.

The company also announced its near-final beta of the product, which will provide portal integration between Microsoft Office and Windows, the company said in a statement. It will allow companies to integrate document management, search, subscriptions and on-line discussions into their document collaboration process. SharePoint Portal Server is expected to ship later this year, Microsoft said.

Sun building Web apps framework

Continuing its mantra of “network as the computer,” Sun Microsystems Inc. is at work on a development framework for building Web-enabled applications.

Sun hopes this will move the company further into the Web services fray to compete with Microsoft Corp., Oracle Corp., IBM Corp. and Hewlett-Packard Co. Code-named Brazil, Sun’s application development toolkit is still under development and officials declined to comment on when the tools would become available. The early version of the toolkit, however, is designed to enable developers to reuse components and to build applications that are available via the Internet. A pre-release of Brazil is available for download at www.sun.com/research/brazil.

SuSE keen to get its Linux in handhelds

German Linux software distributor SuSE Linux AG has expressed an interest in developing operating systems for the growing market in handheld devices.

“Being a stable, flexible and affordable operating system, Linux has without any doubt all chances to establish itself as a standard in this new market segment,” said SuSE CTO Dirk Hohndel in a statement. He stressed, however, that SuSE’s core business targets will remain the server and desktop markets. Hohndel said in November that he estimates Linux will capture 30 per cent of the desktop market in the next two years, up from a current 5 to 8 per cent. At present the platform is most popular in the server segment. Regarding handhelds, SuSE spokesman Wolfgang Herrmann said, “One prerequisite is that we have a good business model with this, and that we can cooperate with the major hardware vendors, which of course would have to support this.” Currently, the market for handheld operating systems is dominated by Palm Computing Inc.’s Palm operating system and Microsoft Corp.’s Pocket PC platform.

GraphOn enables testing over Web

GraphOn Corp. recently announced a licensing agreement with Aptix Corp. that will allow users of the Solaris-based Virsim waveform viewer tool, which works with Aptix’ Unix-based system-on-a-chip testing software, to run critical tests of IC chip designs from anywhere in the world via the Web.

Aptix officials said using GraphOn’s Bridges software to Web enable the company’s tools and providing a secure SSL connection will allow the company to expand its services to many more potential customers now that its Unix tools are universally accessible via the Web from the simplest platforms, including Java-based Internet devices to Windows PCs. GraphOn’s Bridges software allows any display device to run any application over any type of connection, including low bandwidth, dial-up and wireless, without any software modification, according to the company.

Microsoft updates tools for building Web services

Microsoft Corp. has unveiled two Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP)-related technologies to help developers build and use Web Services – applications made available over the Web via Internet-standard XML, SOAP and UDDI (Universal Description, Discovery and Integration).

The first tool is the beta release of the Microsoft SOAP Toolkit Version 2.0, which provides developers using Microsoft Visual Studio 6.0 with rapid Web Services development capabilities for production-ready applications. The second is Web Services Behaviour for the Microsoft Internet Explorer browser software, enabling Web developers to aggregate Web Services from multiple Web pages. Both are key technologies for facilitating the creation and integration of Web Services, the programmable building blocks that form the next-generation applications of the Internet, Microsoft said.