Bonum Certa Men Certa

Novell's Desktop Migration Strategy: Slow and Steady

Despite the accolades that SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop have recently received, Novell does not seem all that confident in the "end-to-end open source" solution stack. Novell prefers to define itself as a mixed-source company, with Stafford Masie providing just some of the insight into Novell's perspective.

Sandeep Menon, director- Linux Business, Novell West Asia provides further evidence that Novell is postitioning itself as a "Windows complement", and that Novell sees Linux as a successful "niche" product, happy to coexist with their partner Microsoft in whatever small role they are allowed.

On convincing the customers to deploy open source on desktops, Menon said, "We don't try and do a mass migration in the first place. We first sell the value proposition to the customer that Novell has an agreement with MS, whereby we work hard at interoperability, so they need have no concerns whether the current setup will be affected."

Shedding more light on the "intrusive" strategy of the company, Menon said, "We tell the customers that we would like to do the deployment in phases, starting with a pilot division, so that we can demonstrate how well Linux works, and co-exists with windows."

So, rather than compete directly with their partner Microsoft with their award-winning "complete desktop replacement", Novell is instead encouraging other Linux vendors to also embrace Microsoft and is preaching peaceful coexistence with Windows.

Coexistence with Windows, where have I heard that strategy before?. Now, let's have a look at Microsoft's espoused strategy in regards to Novell:

We need to slaughter Novell before they get stronger… If you’re going to kill someone, there isn’t much reason to get all worked up about it and angry. You just pull the trigger. Any discussions beforehand are a waste of time. We need to smile at Novell while we pull the trigger.

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