With plans to extend the reach of its Solaris 9 Operating System x86 Platform Edition, Sun Microsystems Inc. announced on Thursday support from 100 new third-party hardware components and systems.

Sun also introduced a hardware certification test suite (HCTS) and promotion program. Available immediately, the HCTS enables vendors to self-certify their x86 platforms. All Solaris 9 x86 users and vendors can participate and test their products with certified drivers and system configurations, as well as a catalogue of third party and open source applications, the company said.

Partner response has been overwhelming, as more than 250,000 additional registered licenses of the x86 platform have been registered in the past four months, Sun said in a statement.

The company said it is aggressively moving to ensure the Solaris x86 is available on a wide variety of systems.

The Solaris Operating System is a UNIX operating system targeting the enterprise. In a statement the company said more than 1,000 applications from more than 600 independent software vendors are available on the x86 platform ranging from database, security and Web services applications to vertical solutions such as military-grade solutions.

Sun Microsystems in Canada is online at www.ca.sun.com. The HCTS site can be found at www.sun.com/bigadmin/hcl.