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Getting to Know Open Enterprise Server: Part I

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Posted: 25 Jun 2004
 

In Part I of this series, we discuss the components that will be included in Novell Open Enterprise Server, and explained how it will help you expand and solidify the deployment of open source tools in your network. In Part II, we explore the ways Open Enterprise Server can help you make sure that workers in your organization remain productive and have access to the information and services they need to do their jobs. And finally, in Part III we look at what it takes to manage, backup, and provide failover for an enterprise network with hundreds, even thousands of servers, when some of them are Linux boxes.

As one investment analyst firm stated, ?We believe Linux is among the most powerful and disruptive emerging technologies in the world today.? While Linux and the open source community looks appealing, many organizations still have many questions before they are willing to adopt Linux within their IT infrastructure. With years of experience in understanding the needs of enterprise customers, Novell is committed to answering these questions to ensure that all customers can benefit from all that Linux and open source have to offer.

Supporting open source is nothing new to Novell. We've been providing some of the benefits of open source to enterprise customers for a few years now. With NetWare 6 we focused on services, not just the kernel. We also included various components like Apache and Perl. With Nterprise Linux Services we delivered many traditional NetWare-only services on Linux. The acquisitions of Ximian and SUSE showed further commitment to providing open source and Linux based solutions to enterprise customers. With Open Enterprise Server, expected to ship by the end of 2004, we are bringing that experience and key technologies together.

Why Open Enterprise Server?

Within Open Enterprise Server, customers will have choice and flexibility previously unavailable from a single product. They will be able to deploy just the services that they need. Additionally, Open Enterprise Server provides an alternative to current platform options.

Why is Novell delivering Novell Open Enterprise Server, you ask? Many enterprises are now seeing the value that the open source community can bring to them. Through Open Enterprise Server, Novell addresses many of the concerns these customers may have. Many technology innovations from the open source community can now be available to better meet the needs of enterprise customers. Within Open Enterprise Server, customers will have choice and flexibility previously unavailable from a single product. They will be able to deploy just the services that they need. Additionally, Open Enterprise Server provides an alternative to current platform options.

Many analyst firms have articulated various reasons why enterprises have only found limited uses for Linux. These reasons may be lack of access controls and security, poor directory integration, difficult migration processes, poor management tools and lack of desktop interoperability. Open Enterprise Server addresses these concerns by combining the best of enterprise networking technologies with the best of the open source community -- Novell Open Enterprise Server.

Open Enterprise Server

Open Enterprise Server is a secure, highly-available platform that provides proven file, print, networking, and application services in an open environment. Unlike other server platforms that either force vendor lock-in or are not sufficiently supported for the enterprise level customer, Open Enterprise Server incorporates the best from both open source and enterprise networking leaders. Open Enterprise Server combines NetWare, the long-standing leader of secure, file, print and network management services, and SUSE Linux, a leading open platform for delivering business level applications. Open Enterprise Server even includes directory synchronization capabilities, so you can integrate your systems, shipping with drivers that synchronize identity information between NT domains, Active Directory and eDirectory. Additional drivers are available to integrate various other applications and directories. Only Novell is included in Gartner's magic quadrant for meta directory technology.

Together, customers get common management tools, directory enabled services and an entire ecosystem of support backed by Novell.

Open Enterprise Server provides a networking foundation where Novell NetWare and SUSE Linux coexist and interoperate within your infrastructure. Using integrated upgrade and migration utilities, you can select the platform mix that is best suited for your needs. Moreover, common management utilities enable you to manage both platforms using the same tools, which simplifies daily administration. Encompassing both the NetWare and SUSE Linux platforms, Open Enterprise Server delivers some of the best technologies and services developed by the open source community, as well as fully developed enterprise services that routinely solve business problems for enterprise customers.

Novell has a long-standing history of offering secure, scalable and reliable services for enterprise level customers. Open Enterprise Server continues to deliver solutions to this level of customer. The addition of SUSE Linux to Open Enterprise Server brings the best of Open Source and Linux to the mix as well.

What is in Open Enterprise Server?

What is in OES?

Open Enterprise Server is a platform comprised of seasoned, enterprise-ready technologies along with many enhancements. Specifically Open Enterprise Server includes:

  • All current NetWare services along with the latest NetWare kernel. Additionally, new enhancements/services are under development to improve what is available in NetWare. Everything you know in NetWare now will be in Open Enterprise Server?and more.
  • All SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 services and 2.6 Linux kernel (Intel-based x86 platform). SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9, expected to ship this summer, will be included in Open Enterprise Server.
  • Many Novell Nterprise Linux Services 1.0 services and future enhancements under development. The majority of services currently found in Nterprise Linux Services 1.0 that run on SUSE Linux will be incorporated into Open Enterprise Server. Additional services to run on top of SUSE Linux are also in development.
  • Integrated common management tools. This is the glue that integrates these technologies together and provides an environment where they can coexist and work together to provide valuable services and solve business problems.

Open Enterprise Server includes some new features that are in development. Those that are under development and expected to become part of Novell Open Enterprise Server are:

  • Novell Storage Services (NSS) on Linux
    NetWare volumes running on Linux means you can choose a mix of delivering file services on both NetWare or Linux, or migrate your NetWare volumes over to just SUSE Linux servers.
  • Shared iFolder capabilities between Windows and Linux clients
    This newly architected iFolder using the Mono standard means that this latest version of iFolder will run on SUSE Linux on the server side, but will also have a new Linux desktop client. This means Windows clients will be able to synchronize to the server and then to other Linux desktops and vice versa. Users can maintain multiple iFolders and share them with others.
  • Common management tools (iManager for NetWare or Linux)
    You will be able to use iManager to manage either NetWare or SUSE Linux servers
  • Clustering capabilities on either NetWare or Linux
    NetWare servers can failover to other NetWare or SUSE Linux servers, or SUSE Linux servers can failover to other SUSE Linux or NetWare servers.
  • Improved Virtual Office Management
    Enhancements to Virtual Office management simplifies and consolidates the management of Virtual Office and Virtual Teams
  • Common Information Model (CIM)
    CIM architecture allows management data to be delivered through any number of third-party management tools. For companies already using CIM supported management tools for other portions of their technology architecture, they can now manage Open Enterprise Server, whether it be a NetWare or SUSE Linux. Specific iManager plug-ins will be developed using the CIM framework. Those plug-ins that are planned are for system health monitoring and storage, and possibly others. Future versions of Open Enterprise Server will include many more.
  • Standards-based package management (RPM) for NetWare
    This popular open source update tool ensures you are running the latest updates to our platform. We also include the Red Carpet Daemon for both NetWare and Linux.
  • Mapped drive support for Linux from a Novell client
    Allows those who use the Novell client to access storage resources on a SUSE Linux server
  • iPrint client on Linux desktop
    In addition to already available Microsoft desktop support, Linux desktop users can now have point and click installation of printers, greatly easing the workload of technical staff who support print related issues.
  • Migration and upgrade utilities
    You get to choose the best mix of platform technologies. Open Enterprise Server provides the migration and upgrade utilities to make sure migrations and upgrades are smooth.
  • Integrated directory management simplifies workload through role-based management.

Value for NetWare Maintenance or Upgrade protection Customers

For companies who are looking for an alternative to Microsoft technologies, Novell Open Enterprise Server, and particularly SUSE Linux, provides a solid foundation for a complete server to desktop alternative.

As a NetWare customer, you know how important NetWare is to your infrastructure. You have trusted it for years to provide you with enterprise-level file, print and networking services. While many applications have been developed for NetWare, currently the majority of application development is on the Linux platform.

And, through SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9, you will get the latest 2.6 Linux kernel and have the ability to run numerous business applications developed to run on Linux. This is in addition to the many NetWare, J2EE, or Apache applications you could already run on NetWare. Additionally, Novell's directory and clustering technology means you can securely control access to those services and ensure they are available at all times.

For companies who are looking for an alternative to Microsoft technologies, Novell Open Enterprise Server, and particularly SUSE Linux, provides a solid foundation for a complete server to desktop alternative.

With Open Enterprise Server, customers don't need to rip out their existing infrastructure. Many of the services can be added as needed, on either a NetWare or SUSE Linux server. NetWare customers who are familiar with Novell's management tools will be able to leverage their current skill set to manage SUSE Linux servers as well.

Value for Earlier NetWare Customers

If you are only licensed for earlier versions of NetWare and have no maintenance and upgrade protection, Open Enterprise Server will provide you all the features and benefits that are currently available in the latest version of NetWare, and more. (For more info about the features in NetWare 6.5, see Upgrading your Business to NetWare 6.5.)

Long-time NetWare customers have trusted NetWare for years to provide them with enterprise-level file, print and networking services. If you upgrade now to NetWare 6.5 with maintenance and upgrade protection as part of your contract, you will be entitled to run SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 8 (Intel-based x86 platform) for the same number of user licenses you have for NetWare.

With Open Enterprise Server, customers don't need to rip out their existing infrastructure. Many of the services can be added as needed, on either a NetWare or SUSE Linux server. NetWare customers who are familiar with Novell's management tools will be able to leverage their current skill set to manage SUSE Linux servers as well.

Heads Up: NetWare customers with active maintenance or upgrade protection can deploy SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 8 immediately ? at no additional cost.

In addition to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 8, you can receive:

  • NetWare 6.5
  • Novell Nterprise Linux Services 1.0
  • Novell Open Enterprise Server
  • Indemnification

What about my Applications?

Your decision on which platform to choose for your networking infrastructure may be driven by which platform is needed to support your critical business applications.

For many organizations it's all about applications. Your decision on which platform to choose for your networking infrastructure may be driven by which platform is needed to support your critical business applications. You've heard that Linux is gaining support as a solid application platform but you still have some questions:

  • Is Linux a viable alternative to Microsoft?
  • What about Open Source applications? How do I deploy them?
  • Do I need to consider a separate application server outside my networking infrastructure servers?
  • There are some applications that still some applications that only run on Microsoft, what do I do?

Open Enterprise Server provides some answers to these questions.

Open Enterprise Server provides very strong application support and is a real alternative to other platforms available today. Within Open Enterprise Server you have SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (Intel-based x86 platform) and the ability to deploy many applications that are certified on this platform.

The open source community provides many applications that run on the AMP (Apache, MySQL, Perl/PHP) foundation. You can also deploy any number of J2EE applications, and with the open source Mono architecture, you will be able to run any Microsoft .Net application on Linux. With this broad range of application support, you have many choices and more flexibility to provide the application services that support your business.

What if your only choice is to run a Microsoft application? Even in this situation, Open Enterprise Server can help by supporting that application through a scaleable, secure and reliable storage environment for application data.

Application Platform

Open Enterprise Server includes the complete code set for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 for Intel-based x86 hardware.

Open Enterprise Server includes the complete code set for SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 for Intel-based x86 hardware. With SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 you have a leading Open Source application platform. Software vendors are aligning much of their development around the Linux platform and many business level applications are currently certified to run on SUSE Linux?Oracle, SAP, Sybase, BMC, VMWare, CA, Veritas and others. Also, much of the new software development is devoted to Linux, even more so than on Microsoft.

SUSE Linux is not new to the industry. With over 12 years of doing business and having delivered the first commercial distribution of Linux, SUSE Linux is a seasoned platform and is ready for the enterprise.

SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 is also the first distribution to meet the latest government security requirements. The Common Criteria (CC) Common Access Protection Profile (CAPP) Evaluation Assurance Level (EAL) 3+ provides a relatively high level of assurance that the evaluated system will properly foil unauthorized access attempts while allowing valid, authenticated users access to system resources. The recent certification is seen to be closing the gap between enterprise and open-source products with respect to security accreditation.

While Open Enterprise Server includes the Intel-based x86 version of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 is also available separately on a total of 8 different hardware architectures. This is because SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 supports Universal OS. If you need Linux on multiple architectures, Novell can meet your needs. (Open Enterprise Server includes SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9 for the Intel-based x86 platform.)

A growing number of application vendors develop software, business applications and vertical solutions based on SUSE Linux. This number is continuing to grow rapidly. These vendors agree to check their developments in regular intervals for functionality and performance. Numerous hardware vendors also support the SUSE Linux operating system.

A list of certified applications for SUSE Linux is available here.

Alternative to Microsoft

You have many alternatives available to you. Now you can protect against viruses and security breaches, minimize patching and updating your system, forget licensing problems, maintain your choice of who you partner with, create solutions based on open standards and have a more reliable, yet open environment.

If you are looking for an alternative to Microsoft as your application platform, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, which we just talked about, is an obvious alternative, however, you have even more choice with Open Enterprise Server.

  • Open Enterprise Server includes an integrated version of the Apache Web server to replace Microsoft IIS
  • Open Enterprise Server includes a commercially licensed version of MySQL to replace Microsoft SQL. Additionally Open Enterprise Server supports Posgres SQL, another popular open source database.
  • Open Enterprise Server includes support for Perl, PHP, Python and Java Server Pages. Popular scripting tools to replace Microsoft Active Server Pages.
  • With open source Mono architecture, you can deploy any .NET application on Linux. Additionally, Open Enterprise Server supports varying levels of Java and even includes a dedicated Web application server in the form of the Novell exteNd Application server.

You have many alternatives available to you. Now you can protect against viruses and security breaches, minimize patching and updating your system, forget licensing problems, maintain your choice of who you partner with, create solutions based on open standards and have a more reliable, yet open environment.

Not only do you have a large collection of enterprise applications that run on SUSE Linux platform, you also have the ability to deploy numerous applications and scripts from the open source community. Within Open Enterprise Server you can deploy Apache, the most prominent Web server, MySQL, the leading open source database, and Perl/PHP and Java, all popular scripting formats. You can deploy these technologies on either NetWare or SUSE Linux Enterprise Server. You now have a broad range of choice and flexibility when it comes to delivering services to users in your organizations.


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