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Attachmate’s Obscurity and Novell’s Continued Demise

Posted in Novell at 6:47 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Yes we’re talking about knifing the baby.”Microsoft

Baby hands

Summary: A look at some recent news about the company we have been boycotting for almost half a decade

THE COMPANY which bought Novell, Attachmate, is rather obscure and the way it bought Novell was mysterious given the sizes of the companies and the source of financing.

We recently started tracking Attachmate and there is very little about it in the news. This new page includes Mark Benoit from Attachmate Corporation, but there have been no items of news about Attachmate in over a week, except when it was mentioned in relation to a biased Novell survey:

It seems like you can’t go a week without reading a story in the news about some type of data security breach. Brennan O’ Hara, solution manager for Seattle-based Attachmate division, NetIQ (News – Alert) recently released a survey of over 200 IT “decision makers,” who commented that “although all this money and technology is being thrown at the problem, if you have a terabyte’s worth of data to dig through and you are under-staffed as an organization, under-resourced as an IT organization, it’s going to be very difficult for you to properly spend the time to navigate through all that data.” However, enterprise password management software can help in these types of situations.

This was just a self-serving/promotional survey which we wrote about at the time. Those who base articles on it must apply better critical analysis.

In other news, “Novell Ireland Software loss of $11.4m” says a headline from the Irish Times. So it is not working too well for Novell, is it?

NOVELL IRELAND Software Ltd, head of Novell operations in Europe and the Middle East, recorded a pretax loss of $11.4 million (€8 million) in the year to the end of October 2010, according to accounts filed recently.

The Dublin company employed an average of 146 people during the year, compared with 150 the previous year.

Novell is a dying entity living in its past glory and legacy products. WordPerfect, for example, is mentioned in this article from Utah:

WESTERLUND: As far as entrepreneurism goes, a lot of the major industries that are here were started that way. When you look at Novell and WordPerfect (WP), you look at Nu Skin and a lot of these companies, a lot of the major corporations that we have in this area are seeds from one of those two arenas. And that’s fostered an idea that you can go out and do those things.

The other thing that helps support that is infrastructure. When a company grows up and they’re really big, like Novell or WordPerfect, you have all these support industries that come along with it, whether it’s as simple as printing or hotels. These support industries are now in a mature enough state that they can support other companies.

There is another news article from Utah which mentions WP:

This is the birthplace of multi-level marketing companies galore with international giants NuSkin and Tahitian Noni nested in Provo. If any of your secretaries or accountants ever used word-processing software in the ’90s, chances are it was WordPerfect, created in Provo, as was the company that bought it out, Novell, an early world leader in networking.

It remains to be seen if the WP case against Microsoft will be carried forward by Attachmate. Lexology still has some new pages about the SCO case [1, 2], which is hopefully over for good.

People are constantly leaving Novell and finding new jobs elsewhere as Novell has been on the decline for over a decade. Here is one new case of departure from Novell:

The school changed its email provider last semester, from the Novell Groupwise system to the Google Mail system. Ordoyne said the move was primarily made to cut back on server costs.

A project maintained by a Novell developer, Pinta, has formally died as we explained some days ago and ITWeb is still promoting a Novell Vibe, which is a dead product that Novell buried quite a while back.

In the past week’s news we have found former Novelles such as this man, another former one joining Quintana as president as covered here, and another former Noveller as covered there. Novell once employed a lot of people, including Google’s departing CEO. But now Novell is nothing, it’s an embarrassment at best.

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