08.30.08

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Do-No-Evil Saturday – Part III: SCO, Legacy, and Local Events

Posted in Apple, Courtroom, GNU/Linux, Law, Mail, Marketing, NetWare, Novell, SCO, Videos, Virtualisation at 4:08 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

This is the last post in today’s series [1, 2]. It looks at a variety of topics.

SCO

There has been less action from Utah in this past week, but Groklaw shared a few reports:

1. New Novell Deadline for Filing Brief on Interest, Judgment & Some 2003 SEC Filings About SCOsource

The parties stipulated to another extension on the deadline for Novell to file a brief describing what pre-judgment interest it wants from SCO on the amount ordered by the Utah District Court on July 16. The new deadline is August 29. Just a brief note in case you were wondering why there was no filing on the 22nd

2. For the Sake of History, a Novell 1994 10K: Unix source and UnixWare 2 separate products

Unix System V and UnixWare were not the same thing to Novell, nor was UnixWare just the latest version of Unix System V or the only way to get the source. That gives context to the wording of the Novell-Santa Cruz Asset Purchase Agreement the following year…

3. Novell and SCO Agree on Interest, Trust Amounts; Final Judgment Still in Dispute

Novell filed today, as per the deadline, two documents, one an unopposed filing regarding interest due Novell by SCO — SCO has agreed to the sum of $918,122 in prejudgment interest and $489 per day until the final judgment is entered.

Legal

“FUD or not FUD?” was the question I asked Pamela when I sent a pointer the following piece from Local Tech Wire:

The Microsoft-Novell Problem

In a bold move, GPL 3 also implicitly addresses a recent deal between Microsoft and Novell by prohibiting certain patent indemnification arrangements found in licensing or patent agreements between parties. Microsoft agreed not to sue Novell’s customers for patent infringement for such customers’ use of certain Microsoft products, and vice versa. The Microsoft-Novell arrangement also provides payment from and to each other based upon how many of each party’s customers agree to such no-sue provision.

Conclusion

The storms seen after several of the draft releases of GPL 3 did not reoccur when the final version was released. Only time will tell if companies will transition from GPL 2 to GPL 3 in a relatively uninterrupted manner. While GPL 3 takes steps to integrate open source software with proprietary software in the modern era, its targeting of certain practices and companies may end up alienating the very users it is trying to retain.

Groklaw wrote: “There is an article about GPLv3 and patents written by a lawyer at Ward and Smith. I thought I should point out that this is not the same firm whose partner, Johnny Ward, is suing PatentTrollTracker, Ward & Smith, the Texas firm (scroll down to keyword Cisco). The article is factual until the last sentence, “While GPL 3 takes steps to integrate open source software with proprietary software in the modern era, its targeting of certain practices and companies may end up alienating the very users it is trying to retain.” I don’t see anything in the article leading to that conclusion; it’s not users that may be alienated, just patent aggressors maybe, but that is quite deliberate.”

Finance

Larry Dignan was optimistic about Novell’s results. We strongly disagree, but here is how he concludes.

Admittedly sell-side analysts can get a little bubbly, but it’s rare that praise is heaped on Novell. Given customers and partners are also headed Novell’s way it may be time to pay a little more attention to the company…

Maybe Microsoft gave the analyst some “bubbly” to prop up Novell. Analysts are just messing about with perception.

Having been pressured/brainwashed by Novell, Matt Asay seems to forget or neglect what Novell has done. His post was long and it included the following observation.

Unfortunately, Microsoft, but some signs suggest that Novell is increasingly standing on its own in the Linux market, rather than relying on Microsoft to peddle SUSE Linux (which it has no long-term incentive to do).

Another ‘yes man’ assumes that the PR charade echoes the sentiments in the industry:

Lots of open source fans booed when Novell jumped into bed with Microsoft. But perhaps sleeping with Microsoft really is good for Novell’s health. Anecdotal evidence is starting to suggest that CIOs (chief information officers) actually like seeing Novell and Microsoft arm in arm.

is this based on word of mouth? A study? A Novell press release? Either way, another optimist has shown up.

An increase in Linux software sales has helped Novell beat market expectations for the quarter and raise its year-end forecast.

Expectations and actual performance are totally different but not independent. Novell’s losses widened, so looking ahead is just wishful thinking.

Netware

Gone are the days of ‘de facto’ Netware, but the following article pays attention to it.

It now has only one IT person who handles desktop support and special project work. masterIT utilizes EVault InfoStage and EVault InfoStage DualVault from Seagate (NYSE: STX), plus Agent plug-ins for Microsoft SQL Server, Novell Netware and Open Transaction Manager.

This legacy cash cow is also mentioned in an interesting article which delves into Novell’s history.

Two years earlier, Microsoft paid Novell $536 million to settle a patent lawsuit relating to NetWare and at the same time Novell launched another lawsuit relating to alleged antitrust infringements by Microsoft’s software stack on Novell’s WordPerfect software. The U.S. Supreme Court was petitioned by Microsoft to quash the case back in January, and in March of this year the court refused to hear an appeal of the case. That means the antitrust case Novell has put together–which concerns grievances back in the 1990s when Novell briefly owned WordPerfect and tried to take on the Office stack before bailing out and selling the software off to Corel–is still proceeding. It is amazing that this latest round of Linux money from Microsoft did not include a settlement of the WordPerfect suit. Then again, if you do the math on the damages, Novell is probably trying to wrestle a few billion dollars out of Microsoft for what its aggressive tactics did to the WordPerfect empire in word processing.

Novell has won this award — whatever its significance may be — for network management.

WALTHAM, Mass., Aug. 27 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Novell today announced it has been named overall winner and Company of the Year in Systems and Network Management in the 2008 Annual Report Card (ARC) from Everything Channel’s VARBusiness. The VARBusiness ARC awards, now in its 23rd year, recognize outstanding partner programs and superb vendor service in 18 major product categories. In addition to being awarded Company of the Year in Systems and Network Management, Novell took first place in the
three Systems and Network Management sub-categories, product innovation, support and partnership, which determine performance and partner satisfaction.

In the following article covering storage certifications, the Certified NetWare Engineer certification gets a quick mention.

Storage suppliers need to make customers care about certification. I don’t want to date myself here but I can remember when Novell rolled out this thing called a CNE (Certified NetWare Engineer) certification. It marketed the importance of that training to customers, who learned that it was important and started asking resellers for people with that training. I even paid extra to have the cool little logo on my card. The program then was ruined by the cram session courses, where resellers could take all the exams in a condensed class; when the quality of the training went down, customers stopped asking for it. That brings us to the situation we have today around certification.

There’s also this new ZENworks whitepaper.

Virtualisation

Sys-con had this new session:

View PlateSpin/ Novell’s Virtualization Conference & Expo Session Through A SYS-CON Webcast

Another good post from Joe Brockmeier attempts to explain why Novell does not earn the virtualisation recognition it deserves. It’s a response to claims of artificial hype (grassroots or Astro-Turf) from Microsoft and VMWare.

Even though it might be nice to think that journalists (and bloggers, and dual-duty freelancers who wear both hats interchangeably…) are out there doing tons of research to bring the right information to IT readers — guess what? Most writers are struggling to hit deadlines, make up for incessant staff cuts as publications trim budgets, and generally ride the tide of news in their various beats.

Identity/Security Management

There was this new press release from Novell, but it isn’t particularly significant and it only refers to Microsoft’s Partner Group [1, 2].

Novell today announced it has been positioned in the leaders quadrant of Gartner, Inc.’s, “Magic Quadrant for User Provisioning,” by Earl Perkins and Perry Carpenter, August 15, 2008. The Novell(R) portfolio of identity and security management solutions — which includes Novell Identity Manager, Novell Sentinel(R), Novell Access Manager(TM) and Novell SecureLogin — helps customers reduce deployment and administration costs, simplify complex provisioning, manage user roles more securely and enforce compliance with industry regulations.

Teaming

That too is a press release.

With a focus on helping organizations improve workforce productivity, Novell today announced the availability of the Novell(R) Teaming Starter Pack program, which includes 20 free user licenses. Novell Teaming is a flexible collaboration solution designed to help groups successfully work together, regardless of location. Available as an easy, pre-installed download with a quick start guide and tutorial videos, the Starter Pack is a risk-free way for organizations to try next generation collaboration tools and experience more productive and creative teamwork to drive better business results.

Some more here.

Novell announced the availability of the Novell Teaming Starter Pack program which includes 20 free user licenses, to help organizations improve workforce productivity.

Mail

Novell’s GroupWise got the shaft.

Chiquita, an international marketer, producer and distributor of fresh and value-added food products with annual revenue of $4.7 billion, consolidated its 4,000 e-mail accounts from Novell GroupWise and other platforms onto Azaleos OneStop services.

The full report is available at www.azaleos.com from an easy link off of the homepage.

Chiquita was using Novell GroupWise for its messaging and collaboration needs. As a result of the 2006 acquisition of Fresh Express, Chiquita inherited 1,500 users of Microsoft Exchange. The company decided to standardize all of its users on one messaging platform and consolidate its infrastructure around a Microsoft system.

Here is another example among many recent ones of iPhone playing with GroupWise.

CompanionLink Software, a leader in mobile synchronization solutions, releases iPhone software for GroupWise users. The software, called iClink, wirelessly synchronizes contacts, calendar events, and tasks between the iPhone and GroupWise.

Security

It’s interesting to discover that Mitnick had stolen code from Novell. Maybe SCO can sue him if it still believes to be the owner of UNIX. [sarcasm /]

In the mid 1990s, Mitnick became the world’s poster boy for the “hacker threat” when he was identified as the guy sneaking into and stealing code from networks including those belonging to Sun Microsystems, Motorola, Novell and Fujitsu.

People

A former Novell CTO finds himself
in Conviva.

In conjunction with the Series B funding, Dr. Carl Ledbetter, managing
director of UV Partners, has joined the Conviva board of directors. Prior
to joining UV Partners, Ledbetter was senior vice president,
engineering/research and development and chief technology officer at
Novell, and was responsible for Novell’s venture fund. Earlier in his
career Dr. Ledbetter was president of AT&T’s consumer products division and
held senior positions at Sun Microsystems, IBM, and Control Data
Corporation.

Certified Novell Engineer Mark Cenicola will present in this event.

Presenters:
Mark Cenicola
Before founding Cenicola-Helvin Enterprises in 1999, Mark worked as
a Network Engineer (Certified Novell Engineer) for the City of North
Las Vegas responsible for helping with the design, layout and
maintenance of a new multi-million dollar computer network. Mark was
a shareware computer software author with titles written for both
the Macintosh and PC which have been featured in magazines and
CD-ROMs across the globe in places like Japan, France, and the US.

One more presentation from Novell:

Presenters are subject-experts from companies including Embarq, KeyBank, Novell, TELUS and many more. CTC also provides attendees with first-hand knowledge of Callidus’ ever-growing offering of SPM solutions.

Here is another quick take on the Utah Open Source Conference, which was mentioned about an hour ago.

Conference on open-source software to be held at SLCC
The Utah Open Source Conference 2008 is set for Thursday to Saturday at the Salt Lake Community College Redwood Campus.
XMission and the Utah Open Source Foundation are sponsoring the second annual event that draws devotees of open source software, which is offered free to the public.

Marketing

Novell (or more likely some of its fans) seems to have dropped more promotional videos onto YouTube. It’s a couple of related ones

YouTube is becoming filled with promotional tosh. There is hopefully a way to stop this.

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