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The big boys of computing have taken their shots at making utility computing a reality -- and drawn mostly yawns from those running enterprise data centers. (See Enterprises Still Not Sold on Grid.)

Now an 11-person startup with founders from the storage world are convinced they have an operating system to beat the likes of IBM, Sun, Hewlett-Packard, and EMC to the punch.

Aliso Viejo, California-based 3Tera last month began offering AppLogic, a grid operating system aimed at virtualizing an entire infrastructure -- servers, databases, applications, firewalls -- instead of only servers. The idea is to enable management of all the devices through one interface. That would include storage, which 3Tera CEO Vlad Miloushev says eliminates the need for networked storage.

"No SAN, no NAS, no load balancing, no firewalls, none of the stuff we've been selling to data centers for the last 10 years," Miloushev says. "Just commodity servers, gigabit Ethernet, and software."

AppLogic is aimed primarily at hosted service providers and enterprises looking to provide internal users with a utility model. AppLogic allows developers or administrators to configure and allocate all those devices along with applications through a GUI interface. The idea is to make all of those resources part of the application, which includes everything it needs to run on a grid of commodity servers.

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