Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 22nd Jun 2006 14:09 UTC, submitted by Flatline
Novell and Ximian Novell's board of directors on Thursday named Ron Hovsepian CEO and president to replace Jack Messman, and ousted the company's chief financial officer. In a conference call on Thursday, company executives said the changes were made to accelerate the growth at Novell, which has had disappointing financial results, particularly in its Linux business.
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Novell's death throws?
by BFGoodrich on Thu 22nd Jun 2006 17:42 UTC
BFGoodrich
Member since:
2005-06-30

Novell is spiraling into obsolescence. They are trying to push a distribution that no one really cares about, trying to make a new desktop OS that no one wants because everyone has a Windows desktop. When they drop NetWare what will be left but a second rate Linux company.

They are clinging onto their NetWare and eDirectory products like a life vest when in reality it is a block of lead. If they would have retooled their OS 5 years ago and based it on the Linux kernel (or even licensed Solaris x86) and open-sourced their products, then they may still be alive. RedHat has the right model, but Novell had a lot of technology they could have open-sourced and maintained through support contracts. Even now most of their income is through "legacy" software licensing. Earlier they may have recovered, at this point their products have little meaning in the marketplace.

They should have predicted the rise of Linux, but instead they bought into it only at the height of the Linux "buzz". RedHat has already established itself as the predominent Linux vendor for Enterprise. Now the Linux saturation point seems to be near and the growth numbers for linux are down. I don't see Novell going anywhere but down.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Novell's death throws?
by segedunum on Thu 22nd Jun 2006 19:10 in reply to "Novell's death throws?"
segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

RedHat has the right model, but Novell had a lot of technology they could have open-sourced and maintained through support contracts.

What's most important for Novell is not just that they make money, but for them to have a future they need their software to get used more widely. I certainly think Novell should have open sourced a lot of their software and allowed people and other Linux distributions to package it up and use it. Their existing customers would still have bought support and it would not have threatened them. I think most Linux distros could do with a good well set up LDAP system for distributed authentication. As it is, Red Hat's Directory Services will probably be that software and Red Hat will steadily start taking customers from Novell and eDirectory.

Groupwise, they should have dropped totally. I know many Novell using companies, and none of them use Groupwise. The open source groupware wave has been happening and they should have invested their time in that to fight back against Exchange.

Novell seem to have got confused with this 'both source' thing. This confusion gets passed on to customers to the point where they're wondering just what is or isn't open sourced in a Novell Linux distribution.

Now the Linux saturation point seems to be near and the growth numbers for linux are down.

One point I'll make there. Novell do have a customer base that would carry them through if they treated them right, and that's Netware. Unfortunately, Novell have seen fit to leave them in the cold, making them make a choice for themselves about moving to Linux rather than actually helping them move and giving them the things they need.

The really dangerous thing is that Novell are moving into this Linux world at the expense of the customers who got them where they are, and that Linux world is worth practically nothing for them. Their Linux revenues are worth about $10 million at best each quarter, which is a miniscule, microscopic amount of their total revenue. It's also a fraction of the revenue Suse would have had as an independent company had they continued their own growth, and they would have been a far, far bigger competitor for Red Hat. That's something I find sad.

Reply Parent Score: 4