RealTime IT News

Novell Outlines Its Future

It's a busy time at Novell, as it continues to support its "legacy" products while moving forward with its robust Linux strategy.

In a series of announcements this week, and one expected next week, Novell has managed to lay out a roadmap for its future by strengthening its commitment to the past and present.

Novell GroupWise, a long-standing, time-tested collaboration solution will continue to be supported by Novell for at least the next four years with an aggressive three-release cycle. GroupWise is billed by Novell as the No. 1 alternative to Microsoft Exchange and contains a similar calendar, e-mail and task-management offering.

The company plans to release GroupWise "Sequoia" this summer, and it is expected to bring new functionality and interface improvements. GroupWise "Aspen" is targeted for a fall 2006 release and is expected to introduce new data backup capabilities, as well as a renewed focus on enabling partner applications. GroupWise "Cedar" is expected to be released in the spring of 2008 and will build on Sequoia and Aspen improvements, as well as extend the platform options for the application.

"While Novell continues to garner many positive reviews for our Linux and open source strategies, we also want to be clear that our faithful GroupWise customers can look forward to a bright future with Novell and GroupWise on the platform of their choice," said David Patrick, general manager of Platforms and Services for Novell.

Netware, Novell's other principal legacy product, is expected to receive a major boost next week when Novell Open Enterprise Server (OES) is officially announced at the LinuxWorld show in Boston.

OES includes both SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 (SLES) and Novell Netware in an integrated offering. OES is expected to include a new common management interface that promises to make migration and management easier for both Linux and Netware.

Novell's SUSE Linux also benefited from a pair of announcements that aim to further its penetration into the enterprise. SLES 9 has now been certified to run mySAP Business suite on a long list of hardware. Novell also announced that it would jointly be promoting SUSE Linux with IBM for use on Big Blue's Power platform.

As part of the promotion that ends in March, the two partners are offering a 90-day free evaluation of SLES 9 on POWER, including online software updates.