Microsoft's NT product line, (which consists of Windows NT and Windows NT Advanced Server), has expanded and splintered enough so that it's no longer clear what each product and component provides. This article will help you understand Windows NT, where to use it, and where others are using it. If you're developing client/server applications, NT and the apps developed for NT tend to have good price/performance ratios.
A little history
Many database servers are configured to operate on separate machines to provide a dedicated CPU for database activity. Consequently, many organizations installed OS/2 database servers even though they were Novell shops. Some vendors then sold NLM versions of their database servers to capture the portion of the market that balked at investing in a separate machine that was the only box of its kind in the organization. It also helped that the NLMs tended to be faster than their OS/2 counterparts.
Once the idea of separate database servers took hold in the PC LAN environment, UNIX became an attractive alternative as a database server offering significantly greater performance and scalability than its DOS, OS/2, and NLM counterparts. However, that performance and scalability came at a significant price--in the form of database license fees, suitable hardware, and the effort involved in supporting yet another "new" platform. But the database problems we grapple with in the client/server arena are critical enough to warrant all these pains and expenses.
Enter the Windows NT (new technology) operating system. NT offers the horsepower of …