Novell/Microsoft Cartoon and Video Rant

Posted in Humour, Site News, Videos at 2:51 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

While many readers prefer long posts with substance, some would settle for short ones, if not just links. We have recently been thinking of having a links digest integrated into the Web site. While it is still under consideration, this will remain just a short post with a pointer to a Novell/Microsoft cartoon. To keep this sufficiently long, here’s a SUSE rant as well.

If you have a moment, let us know which posting format and frequency you prefer. It is, after all, a site which ought to be reader-driven, rather than be run with stern editorial control.

Novell Has Accepted the Legal Threats of OpenXML

Posted in Formats, IBM, Interoperability, Law, Microsoft, Novell, Office Suites, Open XML, OpenDocument, Patents, VBA at 12:18 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

A couple of days ago, Shane mentioned proprietary extensions which Microsoft embeds in its OpenXML implementation. That, as a spurious reminder, is the standard which Novell agreed to embrace. It is a standard which fits an application; not a case of applications being built to support a standard. The 6,000+ pages which describe this bizarre ‘standard’ do not include any documentation of these ‘extensions’ and, to make matters worse, according to Sam Hiser, there are legal barriers as well.

In short, Microsoft promises not to sue you for using the Microsoft Office Open XML formats in your software. But this promise only applies to patents Microsoft may have in the explicit parts of the Microsoft Office Open XML specification and which are described in detail there. It would not cover those parts essential to implementation which are merely referenced in the specification and lying outside the specification. See the language, “only the required portions of the…specification”, emphasized below.

It is not surprising that two supporters who are willing to implement Open XML are already in Microsoft’s hands. Corel is one of them, Novell is another. Sun Microsystems has already criticised (even “slammed”) Open XML, as did IBM, among many more people. who comprehend the value and importance of standards.

“It’s an Interoperability Deal”, They Argue, But Where’s the So-called ‘Interoperability’?

Posted in Formats, Interoperability, Samba, Virtualisation at 11:52 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The closer we look at some recent developments, the more we become skeptic on the deal. We wish to present two recent ‘exhibits’, which will hopefully help you make proper judgment based on developers’ behaviour.

The first of the two refers to Samba.

One of the things you’ll notice quickly is that by default, Windows Vista will not map samba shares – nor can you use Samba as a PDC (Primary Domain Controller). This is due to the default security policy of Windows Vista only using NTLMv2 for authentication – something Samba doesn’t support as yet.

This relates to a fairly recent interview where Allison said Microsoft engineers had been told to “f**k with Samba”.

The more recent news comes from LinuxWorld. Once again, Linux takes the back seat and interoperability gets broken, not improved.

In a nutshell, Exchange 2007 can’t run on Microsoft’s most current virtualization software… In any case, users are already reacting, especially in regards to virtualization, which has become a hot bed of networking activity, as well as, a major area of competition for Microsoft with VMWare and open source Xen on Linux platforms.

Pondering the Prospects of Novell Products

Posted in HP, IBM, Marketing, OpenSUSE, Servers at 2:42 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

In a recent writeup titled “Novell a Johnny come lately?”, one guy reckons that Novell is late at the scene.

Novell is piggybacking on its recently announced Linux based partnership with Microsoft to promote its new Zenworks interoperable solution for the management of virtual machines in the corporate environment.

Industry analyst Richard Ptak, one of the principals in Ptak, Noel, & Associates said Novell’s introduction of a “desktop to data center management solution” might have been significant if it had been announced “eighteen months or even one year ago” stated Ptak.

“Novell is not tops here, right. They are way behind where IBM and HP and EMC are in the breath and depth of solutions.”

Offering management solutions for virtual machines is a new and hot market, but Novell is following in the footsteps of other already established players in the systems and server management marketplace that are specifically focused on virtualization, process management and asset management, Ptak explained.

“It is certainly good that they are in the marketplace. [Novell] talks about being able to manage Vista and Novell’s version of SuSE Linux. But it doesn’t really mean much in terms of the platform manageability.”

Meanwhile, a few prominent bloggers ponder the meaning of DistroWatch figures. We pondered this ourselves several times before [1, 2, 3, 4].

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