"Someone just asked me whether, now that Novell's become buddies with Microsoft, I'll be turning away from Novell/SUSE as one of my favorite Linux distributions. My answer is no. I'm sticking with SUSE Linux on both my desktops and servers. Here's why."
Novell and Ximian Archive
Some more reactions to the Novell-Microsoft deal. Firstly, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said his company is open to talking to other Linux distributors about reaching mutual patent coverage deals similar to the agreement signed Nov. 2 with Novell. Secondly, according to Red Hat, this deal means that 'Linux has won', while also saying they would never make such an agreement with Microsoft: "An innovation tax is unthinkable. Free and open source software provide the necessary environment for true innovation. Innovation without fear or threat. Activities that isolate communities or limit upstream adoption will inevitably stifle innovation." More reactions here and here. Update: Another response from Red Hat. In one year's time, a Red Hat general counsil said, Red Hat will be the only Linux commercial vendor left standing, Microsoft support or not.
At a press conference in San Francisco, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is expected to announce a new partnership between Microsoft and Novell. The unprecedented deal will have Microsoft offering a degree of sales support for Novell's SUSE Linux while both companies work towards better interoperability between their respective operating systems. As part of the agreement, Microsoft also promises not to wield its patent portfolio against SUSE Linux. More here. You can follow the live webcast announcement, by Steve Ballmer, here. Update: Novell has put up a detailed FAQ about this deal.
Novell said on Wednesday that its recently released SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop will cost users over USD 300 less than Microsoft forthcoming Windows Vista operating system, and encouraged users to look at their desktop operating system options. Novell UK's technical director, Brian Green, laid out the list pricing for SLED and Windows Vista. Green said a business Vista license will set users back USD 299, compared to USD 50 for a one-year subscription to SLED.
Novell today announced the global availability of the Integrated Stack for SUSE Linux Enterprise, a software bundle that combines SUSE Linux Enterprise Server from Novell with a mixture of open and private source software from IBM, tailored for IBM systems.
Ray Noorda, the son of Dutch immigrants who drove Novell Netware to become the dominant local area network operating system in the 1980s, died Monday at the age of 82 after a long bout with Alzheimer's disease. Noorda was the first to clearly articulate that the many interoperating parts of the computer industry meant that one company needed to cooperate with another to ensure their products worked together. In some realms, they might be both partners and competitors, he noted, in a relationship he summed up as 'co-opetition'.
"Novell today announced that it had received a staff determination notice from the NASDAQ Stock Market stating that the company's common stock is subject to delisting from the NASDAQ Stock Market. The notice was issued in accordance with standard NASDAQ procedures as a result of the delayed filing of Novell's quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the period ended July 31, 2006."
Novell plans an October launch for its Suse Linux Enterprise Real-Time product, an operating system geared for Wall Street traders and others who watch every microsecond of the clock. Novell plans to announce the product at the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo on Oct. 9, said Justin Steinman, Novell's director of marketing for Linux and open-platform solutions. Novell will share the stage with Concurrent Computer, which did much of the engineering work behind the real-time version that Novell will market, he added.
Novell is still working on improving the VBA support of its OpenOffice submission, and is therefore open to all sumbmissions of VBA macros which are not working on the OOo version of SLED 10. In the meantime the question is when - or even if - Sun will accept the patches for OpenOffice to get VBA support.
"I'm rather impressed. Suse Linux Enterprise Desktop 10 is designed to do just that – impress the user from the start, with a smooth and (mostly) simple experience that will satisfy the secretary through to the MD. It does still have some areas to work on, however." Read the rest at Tectonic's.
Novell chief technology officer Markus Rex has hit back at criticism the company included an 'unstable' Xen virtualisation environment in its new Linux server, pointing to support from hardware partners. "We had all the major hardware partners that had virtualisation hardware like IBM, Intel and AMD. They all stood up and said 'Yes, this technology's ready, and we fully support deployments based on Xen and in combination with SUSE Linux Enterprise 10'."
In a change of heart, Novell has ceased distributing proprietary software modules such as 3D video drivers that plug into the Linux kernel. The change came with Novell's Suse Linux Enterprise Server 10, released in July. With the move, Novell is aligning itself with the Free Software Foundation, which shuns proprietary software in general but in particular loathes proprietary modules that run as a component of the open-source Linux kernel.
SLED 10 is finally here, and so begins Novell's effort to get it onto as many business computers as possible. This event also comes shortly after the departure of Jack Messman as CEO, an event which has dramatically changed Novell's business strategy, especially as it relates to its SUSE Linux products. To find out more about SLED, its cousin SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, and the company's plans for the future, I got in touch with senior Novell executive John Dragoon.
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.
According to a Novell confidential memo dated June 14, Novell is delaying its next release of both the server and desktop versions of SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 "to address final issues with our new package management, registration, and update system and also fix the remaining blocker defects."
Ron Hovsepian explains how his outfit aims to regain investors' confidence and turn the tide against Linux leader Red Hat. "Our core Linux business grew 20% quarter-over-quarter. Why? Our strategy is different than Red Hat's. They are approaching this as an edge server play, and it's an enterprise play."
"In order to broaden Linux hardware support and simplify the process of acquiring, installing, and updating device drivers, Novell has created a new driver system that will enable vendors to supply drivers to users directly. Linux drivers are traditionally maintained in the kernel itself, and third-party drivers that aren't available in the kernel often have to be installed manually, a process that generally involves compilation. In many cases, users have to wait for the next kernel release cycle before they can get software support for the latest hardware. Novell's new Partner Linux Driver Process could potentially resolve some of those problems by providing a simple and consistent process for deploying drivers independently."
Linux Format has an interview with Greg Mancusi-Ungaro, the director of Linux and OSS marketing at Novell. "It's been challenging for us to work with partners in a way that's rational, but we've decided that in the next generation of our enterprise products, GNOME will be the default desktop. But we will continue to ship and support KDE."
Novell may be passionately evangelising Linux and Open Office on the desktop but more than half of its own employees can still boot Windows and Office if they wish. Ron Hovsepian, Novell's president, speaking at a press event in Sydney, conceded that "about 2000 employees right now out of 5000 are single-boot only, which is Linux only, the rest are dual-boot." He said that a project to migrate the 3000 dual-boot workers to open source is likely to be completed over the next year or so.
Linux on desktop computers will begin taking off in mainstream markets in the next 12 to 18 months, Novell President Ron Hovsepian has predicted. Linux has been widely used on networked computers called servers, but it has comparatively little success on personal computers, beyond technically savvy users. Many companies have argued the open-source operating system is on the verge of breaking out in PCs and have been proven wrong. But Hovsepian sees some changes that he believes make the market ripe.