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Do-No-Evil Saturday - Part II: Business Around SUSE (SLE*) and Xandros

handshake black and white



THERE have been quite a few articles of interest over the past week. SUSE appears in conjunction with Red Hat a lot of the time, but sometimes it's treated as its own unique entity. Such is the case in the following post from pseudonym 'Paul Murphy', whose previous headline, "Desktop Unix: MacOS X and “Sousa Linicks”," was changed shortly after he had initially published it.





As regular readers know my general preference in making IT decisions is to keep the hardware and software as simple as possible while putting the real focus on empowering the people using it. In general, therefore, I see “the right way” as one that centralizes processing for simplicity while decentralizing control for empowerment - but sometimes there’s no sensible way to meet user needs without giving them laptops and the question then is, which ones you should get?

[....]

For those who put a premium on user productivity, MacOS X is the no brainer option: it’s more matter of fact than Novell’s new GUI skin and packaging, and mostly just stays out of the way of knowledgeable users. In fact, for many it meets the IT ideal: it works so well, they don’t know it’s there or doing anything to help them - they just click and expect it to work; because, well, it just does.


The Register has this article about Sun. Servers in question support SUSE, among other platforms. That's despite the tensions.

The X6420 has two Gigabit Ethernet ports, and because it has fewer memory slots, it can support four 2.5-inch, hot-pluggable SAS drives. Solaris 10, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 4 and 5, Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 and 10, and Microsoft Windows Server 2003 and Windows Server 2008 are certified for the blade. So is VMware's ESX Server 3.5 hypervisor. With two Opteron 2352 processors running at 2.1 GHz, 8 GB of memory, and no disks, the X6240 blade server costs $2,610.


Another article from The Register, which is about IBM mainframes, touches on SUSE's dominance there. It's largely because of IBM, which assisted the acquisition of S.u.S.E. it's a subject that was covered here in the past (e.g. here).

Specifically, Novell is offering a 40 per cent discount on per-core support contracts for System z10 BC mainframes. Since Novell no longer gives out mainframe pricing to the public, it is hard to say what kind of deal this is. Assuming SLES 10 prices have not changed since the summer of 2006, when this rev of the operating system was launched, then basic support for SLES 10 costs $11,999 per mainframe engine (not machine) per year, with a standard 9x5 support costing $14,999 per engine per year and priority 24x7 tech support costing $17,999 per engine per year.

In January, Novell offered customers a three-year support contract for the price of two years to try to spur demand, and it is unclear if this deal is still in effect. To sweeten the pot a little, Novell is kicking in a free SLES self study kit (which has a retail value of $1,095) to System z10 BC buyers.


Here is is some more coverage about those mainframes.

This system is optimized to run Linux operating system. The company has worked with Red Hat and Novell to make sure that Linux runs without a hitch on this system.


SUSE is also being promoted/endorsed by SAP, to which it has been growing close for quite some time. This seems like a sort of reciprocal validation in a press release (also can be found here or here)

As sponsor of this event series and long-term partner to SAP, Novell will be present at the event and will answer questions on the use and advantages of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server for small businesses and midsize companies. Other sponsoring partners include SAP(R) Business All-in-One partners Bramasol, Inc.; IDS Scheer; itelligence Inc. and Optimal Solutions, as well as SAP(R) Business One partners Accelbus Systems, LLC; Apollo Consulting, LLC; Real Solutions of North America, Inc.; Synesis International, Inc. and TBC International Consulting, Inc.

"We're very pleased to be continuing to support the SAP World Tour for the SME market," said Susan Heystee, vice president, general manager, Global Strategic Alliances, Novell. "Both SAP and Novell have heard from our SME customers that they are increasingly looking for a complete solution, from the operating system up to the application, with an integrated source of technical support that will help them lower cost and reduce complexity. SUSE Linux Enterprise Server is a recommended Linux distribution and internal development platform for SAP applications and its further optimization will deliver the performance, reliability and scalability that customers demand."


Despite or because of the economic climate, Novell's identity management product is being deployed on SUSE at a large bank.

One of the largest independent banks in America, UMB Financial Corp., (UMB) is implementing Novell(R) identity management solutions on SUSE(R) Linux Enterprise Real Time to streamline user access and increase data security. A multi-bank holding company headquartered in Kansas City, MO, UMB has 3,500 employees and offers complete banking, asset management, health spending solutions and related financial services to both individual and business customers nationwide. With Novell, UMB has streamlined user access, reduced information technology (IT) administration time and improved its ability to comply with regulatory requirements.


Further south in Latin America, Novell's role is mentioned despite the fact that Red Hat is pretty big there.

According to Muñoz, the company has a strong presence in the retail and financial services industries, with emblematic clients such as BBVA, Carrefour and Sodimac, among others.

"In Brazil we are working on a very important project which is the spread of the use of Linux in the country, in partnership with companies such as Novell (Nasdaq: NOVL) and Microsoft [Nasdaq: MSFT]. Our role is to join them to develop some case studies or business cases that can compare to other experiences in the use of Linux in the US or Europe," Muñoz added.


OES2



OES is based on Linux now. Novell has a new beta, which is covered in the following:

1. Beta of Novell Open Enterprise Server 2 Available

Novell, provider of open source software, has announced the public beta of Open Enterprise Server 2 with Service Pack 1 (SP1), which brings interoperability between Linux, Windows, Macintosh and NetWare to the next level.


2. Novell Open Enterprise beta targets Netware users

To woo existing Netware customers over to the Linux platform, Waltham, Mass.-based Novell Inc. has introduced a beta version of its Linux-based Open Enterprise Server 2

A proprietary utility application that runs on top of SUSE Linux Enterprise, the new Service Pack 1 (SP1) public beta of Open Enterprise Server brings the year-old Open Enterprise application up to par with Netware in performance and scalability and adds new interoperability and ease-of-use features that Netware and other systems lack, according to product manager Sophia Germanides.


The O'Gara shill [1, 2] covered this too (no link) and we mentioned it briefly last week. Worth bringing up again is this Waggener Edstrom ugliness (full document here [PDF]), which should remind the world how Microsoft spies on bloggers and reporters.

Xandros



Xandros may not be Canada-based but there are some roots there and it is mentioned in this article about the recession in Ottawa.

Xandros and Scalix, two Linux technology companies with research operations in Ottawa, are rolling out the Scalix e-mail and scheduling software feature in Japan. Scalix said it has more than 1,000 corporate customers.


Here is another article (among many) about the Xandros derivate from ASUS, running on the Eee PC.

Though the S101 got all dressed up on the outside, its inside still sports the usual netbook components. A 1.6GHz Atom processor, 1 GB of RAM and 16 GB SSD give the S101 its internal thrust. Running Windows XP (the Xandros Linux version won’t be available in the U.S.) the S101 seemed to handle normal netbook such as launching applications swiftly and surfing the Net. The SSD booted the system in a decent 50 seconds.


Here is another one.

I love my little Asus Eee 900 netbook. It's been doing quite well in the world market for notebook computers, and there are more on the way. Mine came with Xandros' really scaled down Linux software, but I loaded Ubuntu-eee instead for a much fuller experience. It's great in tight seating on planes.


AXIGEN, a proprietary mail handling and delivery system, has earned a new distributor, which turns out to be also a channel partner of Xandros.

Amazis.net sp. z o. o. is the distributor of many Open Source solutions developed around the world. It is the sole representative of Mandriva, O3Spaces, AXIGEN Mail Server, Xandros and Scalix. In addition, it also closely cooperates with Codeweavers, Cedega, NoMachine.


More about Xandros and Scalix to be revealed in a coming show?

Munich, Germany October, 2008 Xandros, the leader in making Linux and Windows work together, today announced that key staff will showcase the latest Scalix email, calendaring and messaging solutions at Systems 2008 in Munich, Germany, October 21-24. Systems is the leading business-to-business trade show for IT, media and communications in Germany.


Next to come: the remainder of Novell's business.

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