Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 7th Nov 2006 22:56 UTC
Novell and Ximian "Often cast as the peacemaker in free software disputes, Bruce Perens is on the warpath. When we caught up with him, he wasn't in a mood to be charitable to Novell. On Friday the Utah company, which markets the SuSE Linux distribution, revealed that it was entering into a partnership with Microsoft. Redmond would pay Novell an undisclosed sum in return for Novell recognizing Microsoft's intellectual property claims. Novell received a 'Covenant' promising that it wouldn't be sued by Microsoft."It's a case of 'Damn the people who write the software'", he told us. "Novell is in a desperate position - it has a smaller share of the market than Debian,"" he told The Register. Update: Novell responds to community's questions: here, here and here. Update 2: Havoc Pennington's take.
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Novell's mistake
by Don T. Bothers on Tue 7th Nov 2006 23:40 UTC
Don T. Bothers
Member since:
2006-03-15

The problem with Novell is that they came into the Linux game thinking they were the big dog, thinking they will toss a bit of money here and there, and then end up owning the Linux scene. But because they did not understand Linux, they ended up destroying a perfectly good distribution.

Novell's biggest mistake was their failure to understand the market. They failed to understand that what enterprise customers really wanted was a standard Linux distribution that worked with 3rd party applications, had a long life time, and that had a company behind it that enterprises can go to with their problems. Enterprises did not want a Linux leader, they wanted a company that was part of the Linux movement. Because Novell did not understand this, and because Novell wanted to own the Linux movement, they tried to gain marketshare by differentiating themselves from everyone else. So rather than offering standard Linux with solid support, they tried to stuff Mono, Ximian, XGL, Reiser, and their proprietary products down people's throats. Enterprises wanted a standard supported Linux distribution but Novell only had the "new and improved SuSE" to offer.

Edited 2006-11-07 23:41

Reply Score: 5

RE: Novell's mistake
by macisaac on Wed 8th Nov 2006 01:32 in reply to "Novell's mistake"
macisaac Member since:
2005-08-28

...except you seem to be forgetting that prior to novell buying them, SuSE (or however they spelled it) was already pushing reiser (it's only now that novell seems to be considering going standard with ext instead), YaST was _not_ GPL (re-licensing it was one of the first things Novell did post-aquisition), and they already were known as a distro with an ambiguous position regarding "free software" and what that means.

Sure, it was pretty before, and came with nice thick manuals and tons of software, but to me it's really only after Novell picked them up that they've become a serious distro to contend with.

Reply Parent Score: 3