June 23, 1998 11:25 AM PDT

Marimba sticks by push software

Confident that "push" technology is alive and well in the enterprise, Marimba today released Castanet 3.0, the latest version of its push software suite.

Castanet lets its users broadcast and manage software applications over the Internet or through corporate intranets. The software is designed to let information systems managers remotely update the software applications of employees, business partners, and consumers alike.

The version of Castanet announced today improves support for Microsoft's Visual Basic development tool as well as Windows applications, according to Marimba.

While push technologies for delivering information over the Web to consumers by and large have flopped, Marimba is putting its money on a strategy of selling push to businesses as a software delivery mechanism, and now as an application management tool.

"This is a major step forward for the company," Marimba chief executive Kim Polese said on Version 3.0's release. "We're moving up the food chain from software distribution to application management. That means not only getting information from point A to point B, but taking care of what goes on behind the scenes."

Polese expressed optimism both on the subject of her company and on the market for enterprise push technology. Marimba is on schedule for its plans to go public, she said. But she declined to say when that public offering would happen.

Castanet 3.0 is composed of the following smaller suites:

  • The Infrastructure Suite consists of the tuner, or client software, and the transmitter, or server software. Components new to version 3.0 include one for obtaining and managing digital certificates, and another for retrieving and installing licenses for applications that are broadcast using Castanet.

  • The Production Suite includes a component for publishing Castanet channels to a transmitter, and Bongo, which is used to build the client's visual user interface. New components in Version 3.0 include one for packaging Windows applications as Castanet channels, and another for packaging Visual Basic Applications. A third lets users prepare sets of files for distribution over a Castanet channel.

  • The Management Suite includes the Transmitter Administrator Pro, which lets network administrators manage the transmitter either locally or remotely. Components new to Version 3.0 include a tool for creating custom tuners, another for tracking usage of applications broadcast via Castanet, and a third for copying channels from one transmitter to another, or from CD-ROM to transmitter.

    Castanet will be available this month at a starting price of $10,000.

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