12.27.11

Novell Products Dumped Quickly

Posted in Mail, Novell at 5:11 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Novell’s portfolio fails to survive

Incubator

Summary: A roundup of December stories where companies or institutions dump Novell and also make it known

THE tracking of Novell’s demise is made hard by the fact that it went private. It is also made hard by the fact that companies which dump Novell need not make it publicly known. But we do our best to collect anecdotal evidence and this post will supply some.

Here is an article from December that says:

The new Active Directory, which took the place of Novell to store network accounts, became visible this year. Users now log on to campus computers using an Active Directory account and their Netpass username and password.

Here is another one:

The much-maligned Novell GroupWise e-mail program may soon become a thing of Smith’s past: ITS is considering switching to the Google Apps for Education platform. Smith has used GroupWise since September 2000, though over the years many students have expressed dissatisfaction with the program’s organizational system and size limitations.

Here is a massive loss for Novell:

The council is replacing Novell’s Groupwise collaboration tool and Microsoft’s word processing and spreadsheet software for its 3,500 staff, it said in a statement. The switch is expected to save the council £3 million over the next four years.

They are getting rid of GroupWise:

Research by the council’s IT department earlier this year found two viable options for the shift: Microsoft Office 365 and Google. A tender was put out in July to find a company to help migrate the council from its current Novell GroupWise system to one of those two solutions, including supplying licensing, and the winner was the London-based Google reseller Cloudreach.

In LA, after a fuss was made, it turns out that:

Google will pay up to $350,000 per year for those employees to use that system, which is run by Novell, a competitor.

It took a lot of smears against Google to achieve this. Proprietary Groupwise is not necessarily more privacy-respecting than Google. They ought to just deploy Free software, instead. Here is more background information [1, 2], which meets the chagrin of Microsoft boosters. It should not be about security because proprietary software that is native has security problems too. Anyway, it may be too late to reverse this decision. Groupwise might live another day in LA. As for Novell’s other proprietary software, one article says that in provisioning “Key vendors dominating this market space include Oracle Corp., IBM Corp., CA Technologies, and Novell Inc.” How long for? Attachmate is too passive.

Regarding proprietary identity management, Novell is mentioned here. Remember that Attachmate does not promote Novell products, so those pieces of software are in a terminal state right now.

Quoting one last new article:

Licensing revenues are also derived from arrangements in which we enable third party technology, such as solutions from Novell, to be used with our OEM partners’ products.

At Novell, proprietary software is what everything is about, except the incubation known as OpenSUSE.

11.07.11

Attachmate/Novell: Videos, GroupWise, and Abandonment

Posted in Mail, Novell, Videos at 3:16 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Attachment for GroupWise

Summary: An accumulation of news about Novell, focusing on particular themes

New Novell Videos

GroupWise still has some new videos posted about it, e.g. [1, 2, 3] to name the latest. While it is true that a new version is coming, not many changes will be introduced. GroupWise is a dying product with a shrinking userbase.

“Novell Productions” might be a trademark violation in another, separate new video on YouTube, but the Novell brand is a dying brand anyway. It’s coming to be known as Attachmate — whatever does not get liquidated or shut down. There are other new Novell videos, but some are in Polish or are short clips from/about India. It has been a long time since we last saw Teaming mentioned, but here it is again (“Netflex Success Story for Novell Teaming + Conferencing”).

Goodbye Groupwise?

There was a heap of material in the news again about LA’s planned move to Google (from Novell) To quote one example:

The amended contract requires Google to pay for the police and related agencies to stay on Novell GroupWise till November 2012. Google was already footing the Groupwise bill through June 20, 2011. The cost to Google could be several million dollars. But the blow to Google’s reputation as a provider of safe and secure email and collaboration could be far higher.

Over a year ago we showed how both Novell and Microsoft spread FUD to derail this move. It was all over the news in the middle/end of last month:

The letter, dated Aug. 17, 2011, but confidential until now, essentially says Google is responsible for paying for the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD)’s Novell GroupWise deployment through November 2012.

More information can be found in [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9].

Goodbye Novell

In the new we still find former Novell staff that finds a new home by moving to other companies. We also find former Novell staff in Allegiance now. To quote:

The company has named Jason Taylor, formerly with Omniture and Novell, as executive vice president of engineering.

Here is another news story about Novell getting the boot:

The project started four years ago when the University realised it was going to have to replace its aging mish-mash of legacy systems based around conventional PCs and obsolete technology such as Novell’s Netware.

Guess who is moving to Microsoft? Former customers of Novell:

“In moving from Novell to Microsoft for our back end, we had a blank slate,” says Johnson. The organization decided to move from systems-based downloads for applications to user-based downloads. In other words, end users can choose from a library of pre-approved software that they download themselves.

With Attachmate in charge, it is almost guaranteed that Novell’s old business will evaporate one client at a time.

09.27.11

GroupWise is Doomed

Posted in Mail, Novell at 10:15 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Fire burst

Summary: The decline of GroupWise is made apparent by more departures from it, even self-professed analysts who point out the obvious

IT HAS BEEN quite a long time since the last GroupWise release. GroupWise is not cared for all that much anymore. It still has some legacy userbase, but that too is forever eroding.

The firm known as Gartner (which sells bias or points out the obvious) mentions the obvious decline of Novell in E-mail. It doesn’t take analysts to see this, but the news sites do like to reprint Gartner ‘research’ (which it does for paying customers to advance their objectives, not with objective analysis).

There were many ways to redress this so-called ‘study’, e.g. promoting Gmail, but nobody could deny the fall of GroupWise.

Moving on to another new article:

Following a regular IT product selection process, Schelp says a decision was reached whereby SBS would migrate off its existing Novell GroupWise e-mail and groupware suite to Microsoft’s Office 365 Cloud service for some 1300 user accounts.

Here is another one: “That was more or less how things shook out at Lincoln Property Co., said CIO Jay Kenney about the Dallas-based management company’s switching in 2010 from an in-house Novell GroupWise email system to Google Apps for its 4,000 employees.”

And another new story: “Brisbane City Council has undertaken a major project to migrate up to 8,500 desktop users off its Novell GroupWise email system to Microsoft Exchange.”

More on Bisbane from other sources (“Brisbane City Council culls GroupWise”): “Gartner suggests that Novell’s GroupWise and IBM’s Lotus Notes have lost momentum in the enterprise market in recent years, and this has made room for Google to prosper.”

There is a lot of evidence that makes Gartner’s so-called ‘research’ less than insightful and as another article puts it:

In a statement, the analyst house says classic stalwarts like Novell and IBM with its Lotus Notes have “lost market momentum”, while Cisco shut its effort down.

GWAVACon will carry on despite the fall of GroupWise, but how long for? They have a special speaker: “Flynn was appointed President and General Manager of Novell. He has worked for over 30 years in the IT industry, spending the past 13 years with the Attachmate Group.”

How come Attachmate does almost nothing to improve GroupWise? It is not even trying.

08.28.11

Attachmate Lets Novell Products Rot

Posted in Mail, Microsoft, Novell at 7:43 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Fungi

Summary: A long look at the past week’s news confirms a trend involving the collapse of Novell’s products, staff, and clients base

Attachmate never promised much to Novell staff. A lot of the staff got laid off and many others — managers included — moved on in their careers. In the news these days we continue to spot former Novell staff like this one and this other bunch including Stafford Massie. Rather than help Microsoft’s slave, Novell, they actually do something better somewhere else.

Based on this article, “Ivancic said that prior to the acquisition, Novell products competed with each other for resources, leaving legacy applications like GroupWise and NetWare in the cold.”

Well, they still are “in the cold.” We heard nothing about GroupWise from Attachmate. In fact, GroupWise has just been dumped again, this time in District 719. To quote:

The District 719 School Board approved a $160,849 multi-part project to update the district’s current systems. The initiative includes upgrading the district server infrastructure, migrating email service to Microsoft Outlook from Novell GroupWise and developing a hosted archive for correspondence and e-mail communication.

So Microsoft benefits, as usual.

“Attachmate has also officially killed some Novell products other than Mono.”GroupWise is generally dying and even its key staff has been leaving. As one new article puts it, “Canada currently uses three different email platforms: 80% of departments use Microsoft Outlook, 15% use Lotus Notes, and 5% use Novell Groupwise. As a result, departments have adopted a variety of email rules and practices, which results in duplication of effort and less secure email, the government noted.”

Attachmate has also officially killed some Novell products other than Mono. But someone ends up promoting Vibe even after it’s officially dead. It makes no sense.

Attachmate has been replacing many Novell managers with some of its own people. Here is another shuffle:

After the take-over of Novell in April, the Attachmate Group shuffled a number of its high profile executive roles, including the appointment of former NZ general manager, Boris Ivancic to vice-president and general manager of Asia-Pacific.

According to this article from the UK, “Almost four months after its acquisition by Attachmate Group, Novell’s EMEA channel chief has opened up about the vendor’s vision for its indirect channel.” It is funny to see him act like a PR person, whose claims of success are very hard to ingest. Attachmate has basically done just about nothing to help Novell’s products. It’s not clear why Attachmate bought Novell in the first place; maybe someone just needed to take the non-patents part of Novell (the patents went to Microsoft) and do the least possible with it (as that competes against Microsoft). Who benefits from this? Surely not Attachmate. Remember who funded this acquisition.

07.14.11

Novell Business is Lost Following the Staff Loss

Posted in Mail, Microsoft, Novell at 4:15 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Novell goes down the drain

Sink drain

Summary: GroupWise abandoned while staff associated with it abandons the company; not only Microsoft gains from it as GNU/Linux companies too capitalise on Novell’s erosion

A lot of Novell staff fled or got canned. Well, now the business is lost, as expected. Hardly any boycott is needed at this stage; Novell is in a free fall and Attachmate seems apathetic about it.

Ken Muir left some days ago (well, the announcement at least came then) and almost everyone else at A- B- and C-level management already left. Muir was a key GroupWise person.

“NSW Health to dump Novell GroupWise,” tells us a pro-FOSS journalists whose reporting we typically enjoy. Sadly, as he explains, it’s Microsoft which gains here and:

Who knows what treasures can be found buried there [GroupWise], amongst the musty trappings of the past covered in dust? What glories await? What ghosts of the past?

This can also be found here and the original report is here. Attachmate remains quiet on GroupWise, which competes against Microsoft.

In other news from Australia, Novell continues to market the ZENworks product line (proprietary) and a lot of the news was flooded by the marketing PR Novell had paid some firm to generate. There are new faces in Novell’s PR blog, Michele Hudnall and Kim Lorusso, both promoting proprietary software

The importance and relevance of all this is that Novell gets punished for a bad strategy and for Boycott Novell the plan was to have Novell’s GNU/Linux business shifted to companies that do not help Microsoft. The site hopes that it is benefiting companies that do not pay Microsoft for Linux and thus provides an incentive to antagonise the patent extortion. Watch what bankers say about Red Hat right now:

The firm notes Linux shipments are expected to outpace both Windows and UNIX in CY2011 and the acquisition of Novell by Attachmate in November 2010 could help Red Hat increase its market share.

That is a good thing because Red Hat does not pay anything to Microsoft.

07.13.11

Ken Muir (Vice President) Leaves Novell

Posted in Mail, Novell at 1:36 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Leaving Novell in droves

Busy people

Summary: Ken Muir moves from Novell to GWAVA where he will serve as CEO And CTO

THE OTHER day we asked readers whether we should leave Boycott Novell aside while dealing with more important and pressing issues (mostly software patents). Well, although Linux Today chose this article for its front page, we have not received sufficient feedback on it, except from Steve Stites who wrote:

We are nearly finished

Roy Schestowitz has put the most time and effort of anybody into the effort to break the Microsoft-Novell agreement so he is the most likely voice to declare the boycott Novell movement finished. My thoughts on the status of the boycott are:

When Attachmate killed the Mono project that removed one of our two principle problems with Novell. Mono is a dead issue.

Our other principle problem with Novell is the Microsoft-Novell agreement, especially as it dealt with software patents. Attachmate has issued a general statement that they would honor all of the Novell commitments so that agreement is still in force and still applies to software distributed by SuSE. I think that we should continue the boycott until SuSE issues an acceptable statement that they are no longer bound by the terms of the Microsoft-Novell agreement, especially the terms relating to software patents.

All of the bad things that have happened to Novell, Ron Hovsepian, and the others are merely collateral damage to the boycott (and in all honesty the boycott was only one of several factors that brought Novell down). We would have been quite satisfied with killing Mono and destroying the Microsoft-Novell agreement without any personnel changes at Novell or monetary punishment for Novell.

I think that we should continue the boycott, marking time so to speak, until SuSE issues an acceptable statement that they are no longer bound by the terms of the Microsoft-Novell agreement, especially the terms relating to software patents. But yes, we have won and we are only marking time until SuSE figures out a way to get rid of the Microsoft-Novell agreement.

While Novell is still around and amid transformation (there is still emission of new adverts in YouTube) we will keep track of its staff, for example Ken Muir who has just become CEO And CTO of GWAVA. Any future for Groupwise at all? Not based on Attachmate’s actions thus far. The press release says that “Muir, 41, a former Novell executive, most recently served as CTO and Vice President of Novell’s Collaboration business where he was instrumental in building Novell’s collaboration strategy and products. Prior positions include Chief of Staff to the CEO and various engineering and product management leadership positions. Muir has over 15 years experience in the software industry ranging from engineering and development to product strategy and technology management. He brings to GWAVA strong executive leadership and extensive knowledge of enterprise messaging systems, security and compliance.”

It sure seems like The Register got its news 2 months late regarding layoffs at Novell. For those who wonder about SUSE, the OpenSUSE Conference is being handled almost single-handedly by Jos Poortvliet, based on whoever almost always blogs. The other bits of news arrive from the very few volunteers who are left. Quoting Poortvliet:

Over the last month the conference team has received a large number of proposed sessions for the openSUSE conference. However, we also realize we have not entirely capitalized on the potential for especially the ‘interactive’ sessions we wanted. So we extend the deadline with two weeks to allow more BoF, Workshop and Hack sessions to be submitted. And we’ll release some more articles to explain what we want!

OpenSUSE sought funding for this event from some unexpected sources. Will it work out?

06.28.11

Without GNU/Linux or BSD as a Platform, There Can be No Freedom

Posted in America, Europe, Free/Libre Software, Mail, Microsoft at 2:45 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Inca skull from Peru

Summary: Microsoft FUD in Peru (against GNU/Linux, as usual) and a move towards Free software on Windows hits an impasse

“Some FUD from some Peruvian MS minions” called it Eduardo Landaveri, a key member of this site, who shows that FUD is up to its older ‘mode’ again, which no good (we wrote about Peru before). We really ought to make a video roundup of the evolution of Microsoft FUD. “It’s an interview [with] Alejandro Raffaele,” explains the source, “director de marketing de Red Hat in that country. Of course he’s supporting his company’s views but you could see that some people especially on third world countries still believe old FUD, like GNU/Linux has higher TCO, less secure, and the like… It seems that the awareness is getting a foothold in those countries but still we have to engage in counter[ing] it and setting the facts straight.” Here is the Google translation of this article.

According to a pointer sent to us from India, Geneva too, having decide to put Free software only on top of Windows (a strategic mistake Bristol had made too), decided to withdraw from it:

The IT department of the city of Geneva in Switzerland is about to stop its four-year use of open source email clients and OpenOffice, an open source suite of office productivity tools, and revert to the previous, vendor dependent solutions, reports osor.eu.

Mathias Buschbeck, member of the the city council for the Greens, is submitting written questions to the mayor, arguing in favour of the current, vendor independent IT strategy and against the switch to proprietary solutions

To quote OSOR’s article about it, “Geneva [is] abandoning its open source email and office strategy” (on a proprietary platform). The yardsticks are already biased unless the software runs on its intended platform which Microsoft does not control and discriminate on, e.g. performance-wise.

I am currently working on IMAP patches (in C) that would add functionality public services may need. The problem is that they want to emulate what Microsoft is doing rather than adhere to standard Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP), for example.

06.07.11

Novell GroupWise Dumped, What About WordPerfect?

Posted in Antitrust, Courtroom, Mail, Microsoft, Novell, Office Suites at 3:17 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Business team

Summary: Customers continue to replace GroupWise and Techrights wonders what Attachmate will do about the WordPerfect case

Attachmate, a Microsoft partner, has bought Novell while leaving Mono out in the cold and letting Microsoft take the patents. The thing is, Attachmate has hardly said anything about GroupWise. A tricky situation for sure as the product keeps bleeding. EAT is the latest large user to dump it. From the news: “The chain rolled out the cloud-based Apps productivity suite seven months ago to help meet its goal of doubling the size of its business. It replaced a 10-year-old Novell GroupWise system.”

There is more about it here and here:

The migration involved a move away from Novell Groupwise.

Cesar Ramanauskas, systems engineer at EAT, says in a blog post, “In preparation for our goal of doubling in size, EAT migrated to Google Apps for Business, after more than a decade of using Novell GroupWise.”

Inaction from Attachmate cannot help much, can it? But the elephants in the room are actually SUSE, the SCO case, and the Microsoft case. Will Attachmate dump the case against its partner, Microsoft? We are not sure what might happen with the antitrust case because Attachmate never mentions it and the Microsoft booster portrays it as just a “headache” when he argues:

But Microsoft’s antitrust problems aren’t ending just yet. Another old case involving WordPerfect, the once widely used word prcoessor, has been resurrected by a U.S. Court of Appeals ruling overturning a previous judgment in favor of Microsoft and allowing the case being pursued by Novell to proceed. Novell, now owned by Attachmate, owned WordPerfect for a couple of years in the mid-1990s before selling it to current owner Corel.

Some of us think that Microsoft toys around with Skype and Nvidia simply because of loose/lenient oversight.

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