The new agreement was made public at the Oracle Open World conference in San Francisco.

"Dell’s offering of Solaris redefines the market opportunity for both companies," said Jonathan Schwartz, president and CEO, Sun Microsystems. "The relationship gives Dell broader reach into the global free software community with Solaris and OpenSolaris and gives Sun access to channels and customers across the volume marketplace."

Schwartz added that about one third of all Solaris installations run on Dell servers.

In addition, the two companies will also collaborate in securing support from key ISVs for Solaris on Dell PowerEdge servers.

Solaris was released by Sun back in 2005 under an open source licence. At present time, the server OS has passed the 12 million downloads milestone.