News in brief: SAP hosted software, Sun to run Solaris, Julian Graves Epos upgrade

Short takes on this week's news

Short takes on this week's news

SAP to offer try-before-you-buy hosted software

SAP has developed a range of on-demand hosted software for mid-size companies, building on the tentative steps it made towards CRM on-demand last year. SAP CEO Henning Kagermann said the software would be offered under a new "try-run-adapt" model to allow firms to test it before buying it.

Sun signs deal with Intel to run Solaris on Xeon chips

Despite the success of its relationship with AMD, Sun has confirmed its commitment to the rival Xeon processor with a new alliance with Intel. Under the agreement, Intel will support Sun's Solaris operating system. Users of PC servers running either the AMD Opteron or the Intel Xeon chip will now be able to run Solaris.

Julian Graves upgrades to nationwide MPLS Wan

Food retailer Julian Graves is implementing an MPLS Wan as part of its nationwide Epos upgrade programme across 300 outlets. It replaces a modem dial-up system, which polled stores for sales data from the tills. The Wan enables the retailer to see real-time sales information and is improving the communication between stores.

Watson Wyatt speeds up test data extraction

Global consulting firm Watson Wyatt has deployed GridTools' subset database generator, a tool designed to improve the way applications are tested. The company previously extracted test data from its production database each time an application was tested, but this took hours. The GridTools product has sped up the process.

Smartphones and PDAs 'to be targeted by hackers'

Mobile banking and payment initiatives are set to be targeted by hackers, according to financial services consultancy TowerGroup. Although most mobile phones are potential targets, smartphones and wireless PDAs are particularly attractive to fraudsters, given their ability to support PC-like applications such as web browsing and instant messaging, said the TowerGroup.

Plan for the very worst, Socitm warns councils

The Society of IT Management has warned councils that they must plan for worst-case scenarios, and assume that key services could be interrupted and facilities destroyed, when formulating disaster recovery plans.

Wal-Mart signs deal with Microsoft and Novell

Wal-Mart has signed an agreement with Microsoft and Novell to improve support of its mixed server environment, which comprises Windows and Novell's open source platforms.

Security warning on reusable software bug

A warning issued by consultancy Secunia about an ActiveX bug has highlighted the risk of running third-party reusable software components within applications. Secunia said the bug could be exploited by remote attackers to take over users' systems.

Commit to IT review now, scientist tells NHS chief

Computer scientist Martyn Thomas has called on NHS chief executive David Nicholson to commit to an independent review of the NHS IT programme within two weeks. Thomas was speaking at a conference in London to discuss the future of the programme.

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