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01.09.10

Novell News Summary – Part III: Plugs in the Press and SCO Case Galore

Posted in Courtroom, Google, Identity Management, Mail, Microsoft, NetWare, Novell, SCO, Security, Virtualisation, VMware at 5:53 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Lake Powell, Utah

Summary: Novell news from the past two weeks (excepting SUSE/OpenSUSE)

THERE is a heap of stuff to be shared here this week, but none of it is groundbreaking.

Back in December, Ron Hovsepian was marketing his own products in Forbes, advocating Novell terminology such as “Intelligent workload management”. Here are some comments on the article. Forbes is letting Novell’s Dragoon do the same thing sometimes. This magazine is run by business, for business. Processor.com has quoted Novell’s Richard Whitehead again (it’s not unusual for them, either):

Richard Whitehead, director of product marketing for data center solutions at Novell (www.novell.com), says there are three key trends in virtualization shaping up for the coming year.

[...]

For all of virtualization’s promise of fundamental change, however, Novell’s Whitehead says IT’s priorities won’t change much despite the radically different data center landscape.

From “Marketing Manager for Novell’s developer and database product groups” comes another little placement.

Despite the layoffs and the fact that Novell is "going downhill", one company named it as a job destination, which fed Novell’s PR team.

Glassdoor.com, a career and workplace community that brings greater transparency to company cultures, compensation and the interview process, have just released the second annual Employees’ Choice Awards, listing the top 50 “Best Places to Work,” according to surveys collected from U.S.-based employees in 2009.

A former Novell employee who is writing for CNET has given lip service to Novell’s Pulse, which the rest of the press is just ignoring by now.

Novell is doing this with its Pulse service for Google Wave, a testament to just how innovative software can be when it isn’t locked behind a firewall by IT. Others should follow suit, and not create clones of the consumer Web as Tibco has with its Twitter clone, Tibbr.

SCO

Nobody except Groklaw seems to be covering SCO matters these days. Some of the latest articles (and snippets of interest) are:

1. Agenda for Wednesday’s Bankruptcy Hearing: SUSE & Petrofsky

The agenda for the hearing on Wednesday in the SCO bankruptcy is now available. It’s SUSE’s motion to lift the stay that will be argued and the Petrofsky motion to compel, and maybe some uncontested housekeeping issues. So this is one hearing not to miss, if any of you can attend. It begins at 10 AM. Same place. The usual suspects.

Relax. Just kidding.

2. Caldera GPLd Its Brains Out – Want to See?

Would you like to see some places where Caldera has copyright notices in Linux on code it contributed under the GPL, and you’re frustrated because some of us have Caldera CDs and you don’t? Just go to Google code search and search for

license:gpl “caldera.com”

You’ll be buried in GPL’d Caldera code, 5,000 hits.

3. An Offer of Arbitration Docs from Ryan Tibbitts & A Proposed Amended Schedule for Tomorrow

SCO General Counsel Ryan Tibbitts has filed a Declaration [PDF] with the bankruptcy court in support of Edward Cahn’s objection to SUSE’s motion for relief from the automatic stay. SUSE would like to finish the Swiss arbitration, as you know, and SCO would like to keep it from going forward. Tibbitts offers to submit to the judge sealed materials from the arbitration that he claims give evidence that SUSE is not likely to prevail in what he claims is the “highly contested” arbitration.

4. Minutes from the SCO Bankruptcy Hearing Posted

5. Eyewitness Reports from the SCO Bankruptcy Hearing on SUSE’s Motion to Lift Stay

As you can see, it tipped toward at least a partial lifting of the stay, although how a partial lifting helps is a mystery to me. But notice how the SCO position makes very little sense? At one point, Ms. Fatell argues that SUSE and Novell are one and the same, according to our reporter’s notes. Then SCO argues that they are not suing SUSE, but if they are one and the same, what difference would that make? SCO is suing Novell *over* SUSE’s Linux, which is what brought the arbitration into the picture. So it makes no sense. And is it possible that Ms. Fatell does not know that SCO’s litigation filings in the IBM case do ask for billions? And their intentions, SCO’s new management’s, are now fairly clear, I’d say. I’ll wait until I get to see a transcript or listen to the audio to form a definite conclusion, but it appears that newSCOmanagement is very much like oldSCOmanagement in not comprehending the GPL at all and hoping for some short-term gains no matter what happens in the last act.

Here is an excellent and long accumulation of old findings about SCO’s right to sue (or rather, lack of right to sue):

But consider what we know for sure SCO did do, distribute its code in UnitedLinux under the GPL. In the FOSS marketplace, they do that, and back then SCO was a Linux company. And what is simply true is that you can’t operate in the FOSS space unless you do share under the GPL or some other Open Source license that indeed can affect your rights, especially with respect to suing people for copyright infringement. And both Santa Cruz and Caldera, now SCO Group, understood that, and complied with the terms, grudgingly but they at least pretended that it was a great thing. For example, here’s a couple of screenshots for you from the goode olde dayes, when they each wanted to cooperate with the FOSS world.

And on it goes:

7. Hearing Set for Feb. 4 for Novell Motion to Set Aside Judgment – And a Mystery Solved – Update

There is a hearing coming up on February 4 at 3 PM before Judge Stewart in SCO v. Novell, and I surely hope some of you can attend, regarding Novell’s recently filed motion asking to set aside an earlier judgment by Judge Kimball, so Novell can go after monies SCO took in from Microsoft and companies that bought a SCOsource license.

But there’s something odd in the notice about the hearing. It says also on the schedule that day will be oral argument on docket number 277 [PDF], Novell’s Motion for Summary Judgment on SCO’s First Claim for Slander of Title Based on Failure to Establish Special Damages, which was decided in Novell’s favor long ago. Novell didn’t ask for that judgment to be opened up, that I can see, nor would it, since it won that motion, and neither has SCO filed any such motion that I can find. So how is this scheduled for this hearing? That is the mystery.

8 . SCO Opposes Novell Motion to Set Aside Judgment

SCO, “by and through the Chapter 11 Trustee in Bankruptcy, Edward N. Cahn”, has filed its opposition to Novell’s Motion to Set Aside Judgment.

9. Trial in SCO v. Novell Now Scheduled for 15 Days Beginning March 8 – Correction

So two months before it resumes.

Novell’s MoFo story is mentioned again in Legal Brief.

Finance

Bharat is still selling information about Novell while also advertising it. Movements of the shares are not particularly important, but they are mentioned in:

1. ICx, Intellicheck Rise; YRC Worldwide Falls

Novell, Inc (NOVL) climbed 2.1% or 8 cents to $4.22.

2. How has the market reacted to Novell Inc. post-earnings? NOVL, ASIA, MFE, CHKP

Novell Inc. (NOVL) released its earnings announcement on 12/03. The company reported a change in quarter-over-quarter sales of -11.89% and posted an EPS (trailing twelve months) of – .62.

3. Tech Stocks Soar in 2009

Thirteen companies had triple-digit gains and 25 had double-digit stock increases. Only one vendor, Novell, had a single digit stock price increase (9 percent). And only two vendors saw their stock prices decrease.

4. Top 5 Small-Cap Stocks In The Technology Sector With The Highest Cash (CLWR, SAY, CIEN, NOVL, SATS)

NOVL’s shares have risen by just 8.29% over the past 52 weeks, as compared to a 21.59% rise in S&P 500.

Netware

“Great and Disappointing Operating Systems of the Decade” include NetWare 6.5. Here is the relevant part of an article from IDG:

NetWare 6.5

The world was looking for the joiner of Novell’s time-honored and rock-solid NetWare network operating system to be joined fully to Linux. Novell had just purchased SuSE Linux and it looked as though the world might have a powerhouse to rival the initial foibles of Microsoft’s then-embryonic Active Directory. Would eDirectory become a rival and gain authentication market share. Today, that goal is an unfulfilled dream for most.

NetWare was also mentioned here and alluded to here:

•Novell networks. The problem with personal computers was that they were, well, personal. Everyone became an island. Local area networks came along, with Novell being the dominant player, and permitted us to be linked to one another for sharing files and devices.

Virtualisation

Except for hype from Novell’s marketing people, the company’s virtualisation products were only mentioned here as an aside.

Related to testing, virtualization technology has matured to the point that almost every organization can reap the benefits with server virtualization products such as Microsoft Corp.’s Virtual Machine Manager, Novell Inc.’s PlateSpin Virtualization and Workload Management suite and VMware Inc.’s vSphere.

Here is a new commercial disguised as “whitepaper”. It’s about ZENworks application virtualisation. Other quick mentions of Novell virtualisation can be found in:

1. Oracle Rumored to Snap up Citrix under IBM’s Nose; VMware, are you listening?

Oracle has already declared war on many fronts and by doing a Citrix acquisition it will definitely make a massive statement to the virtualization market leaving Oracle, Microsoft and VMware as the main contenders and also Red Hat and Novell slightly into the virtualization market.

2. VDI Rolling Review: Ericom’s WebConnect Goes Above And Beyond

WebConnect supports all the major virtualization platforms out there, and Ericom is the first broker we’ve tested that natively supports XenServer. The only other VDI vendor to do so is Citrix itself. Ericom also supports some community versions of Xen, like Red Hat and Novell Xen, and easily takes the prize for the largest number of supported virtualization engines WebConnect installed relatively easily in the lab, and can be deployed on a single physical server or on a virtual machine for smaller environments.

The ‘Microsoft press’ is pushing the agenda of its masters by writing about the Gartner|Burton talking points for Hyper-V [1, 2] (comparing VMware to Netware). Here is some more marketing waffle from John Dragoon, who tactlessly offers lip service to the pay-to-say Gartner Group. The Burton Group will be consumed by Gartner and what might as well explain Dragoon’s attitude are the roots in Novell:

The Burton Group was founded in 1990 by Lewis and Craig Burton, both of whom had been at Novell. Lewis bought Burton out and through acquisitions took on several other partners.

Very interesting! We’ll write some more about former Novell employees further down in the same post.

Another such analogy which resembles the Hyper-V “Slog” [PDF] comes from Tim O’Reilly, who writes:

(Henry Blodget makes this case in Hey, Apple, Wake Up — It’s Happening Again. On the other hand, Mark Sigal raises a different historical analogy, Novell vs. Microsoft, asking whether Google’s release of its own anointed phone might end up blunting adoption by other vendors, while Google takes the eye off its core business. A lot depends on whether Google holds back anything from the platform available to others. At today’s press conference, Google emphasized the open platform aspect of Android, so they are trying to address that fear. The model seems to be to work with individual partners to push the ball forward, but to return those innovations to the pool available to all partners.)

Mail

Novell actually advertises against Microsoft Exchange for a change. Both Microsoft and Novell are suffering from Google at the moment.

These workers will be using Gmail, Google Docs and other apps to work together, saving what the city’s CIO said would be millions of dollars. Google replaced the legacy Novell GroupWise system and beat out Microsoft and others for the pact. Sounds like a win-win for everyone, right?

Groupwise is also mentioned here:

ExchangeDefender is tailored to a small business’ e-mail system, and works with Microsoft (News – Alert) Exchange, Lotus Domino, Novell Groupwise or any other SMTP mail server, the company said. Like Autotask, ExchangeDefender runs off of set policies to secure end clients’ e-mail servers from viruses, malware, adware and other threats.

A new Groupwise video was uploaded to YouTube very recently:

Identity Management

An article on identity mentioned Novell for its role in this market.

This was echoed by Novell’s Justin Steinman (vice president of solution and product marketing), who said: “2010 will be the year that we take identity into the clouds. Everyone in the industry is excited about using cloud computing.” However, he also voiced some major concerns about these moves, adding: “But what about the security concerns? How do you control who has access to what data in the cloud? How do you ensure that roles are enforced? How do you provision and, more importantly, de-provision identity in the cloud?”

Security

Justin Steinman was also mentions in this post:

# Cloud providers address security concerns. “Security is the number-one inhibitor to cloud adoption,” says Novell’s Justin Steinman. Users can expect to see technologies that allow cloud providers to meet different customer security requirements.

Novell is applying some minor changes when it comes to support.

Effective from the 1st of February, Novell is changing its support terms for access to patches and service packs.

Among new vulnerability reports we find this older one which affects eDirectory:

Novell has released a security update for its eDirectory server to remedy a heap overflow vulnerability. Attackers can remotely exploit the flaw to crash or penetrate a server.

People

Google was voted “company of the decade” and its CEO’s roots in Novell are mentioned here:

Larry Page and Sergey Brin are aided and abetted by Eric Schmidt, a director of the company since 2001. He was formerly at Novell, Sun and Apple.

More here:

Schmidt’s previous gigs at Novell and Sun Microsystems showed him what could happen when innovative companies were slowly subsumed by determined competitors with deep pockets (Novell versus Microsoft) and open software married to cheap hardware (Sun versus Linux). This time, he’s marrying both in an attempt to remake mobile computing in Google’s image by taking on Apple and the wireless carriers.

Schmidt has no obligations to Novell anymore; in fact, he’s taking some of Novell’s market share (as shown above).

In South Africa, the departure of Stafford Masie from Google is called one of the top 10 ICT stories of 2009. Masie previously quit Novell South Africa.

4. Head of Google South Africa’s resignation
Stafford Masie, Chief Executive of Google South Africa, resigned from his position at the company in March 2009, citing personal reasons. Masie joined Google in 2007, after working as the South African country manager of Novell.

Jim Tanner, who has some Novell background, is becoming Senior Vice President (SVP) at inContact. Here is some coverage about it:

1. Tanner led the product and market strategy at software and telecommunications companies such as Unisys, Novell and Realm Business Solutions.

Prior to inContact, Tanner led the product and market strategy at software and telecommunications companies such as Unisys, Novell and Realm Business Solutions.

2. Jim Tanner Joins inContact as Senior Vice President of Product and Strategy

3. Jim Tanner becomes Senior Vice President of Product and Strategy of inContact

4. inContact names Jim Tanner as senior VP of product and strategy

Tanner has experience in leading product and market strategy at software and telecommunications companies like Unisys, Novell and Realm Business Solutions prior to joining inContact.

Nancy Reynolds, who used to work for Novell, is becoming the channel chief of Kaspersky. This was covered in:

1. First take on Nancy Reynolds as Kaspersky channel chief

2. Kaspersky hires ex-Novell/Dell executive as its channel chief

3. Kaspersky Snags Dell Channel Star To Lead Sales Charge

4. Reynolds To Propel Kaspersky’s Enterprise Push

5. Channel Advocate Joins Kaspersky Lab Americas To Lead Corporate Sales Division

6. Nancy Reynolds Leaves Dell to Join Kaspersky Lab

“Nancy is one of the top channel executives in the industry. Her experience, work ethic and passion for winning make her an asset to any organization,” Gary Abad, vice president of channel sales at F5 Networks, wrote on Reynolds’ LinkedIn profile. Abad worked with Reynolds at Novell as vice present of channel sales.

7. Kaspersky Lab Planning Managed Security Services Strategy

Kaspersky Lab, the fast-growing anti-virus software provider, is planning a managed services partner strategy that will likely surface within 30 to 60 days, according to Senior VP of Corporate Sales Nancy Reynolds. Kaspersky’s move is part of a larger trend: Multiple anti-virus companies — McAfee, Panda Security, Sophos, Symantec and Trend Micro — are polishing their managed services strategies. Here’s a sampling of where we’re heading.

Here is the press release.

Stephanie Tilton, from whom came some Novell marketing material, is mentioned here.

Harnessing her unique blend of technical knowledge, marketing savvy, and writing skills, Stephanie has crafted nearly 100 case studies and white papers for leading brands such as Akamai Technologies, EMC, Macromedia, Novell, SAP, and Symantec. Her website is Ten Ton Marketing.

Partners

There is nothing major here this week, but Novell was just mentioned in a couple of press releases from Unitrends [1, 2], which can also be seen in this site and that site:

JSO Technology, a Wauawatosa based consulting firm is pleased to announce their partnership with Unitrends. Unitrends is a leading provider of innovative, integrated solutions that protect and restore critical data and systems.

[...]

Whether it is for a new Windows Server 2008 with Exchange Server 2010 or VMware vSphere 4 server, backup for a legacy Novell Netware or Windows NT 3.5 server, backup for a developer’s Linux workstation or a sales rep’s Windows 7 notebook, backup for a SAN, NAS, or simply a directly-attached disk drive or a simple PC, Unitrends can address most of our customer’s back up requirements.”

Novell certifications were mentioned here and an old partner, Wyse, includes Novell in its latest two press releases [1, 2]. Novell also got mentioned by Computhink.

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