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Novell to Expand Linux Solutions for the Data Center

Novell to give customers the data center functionality and quality they demand with greater flexibility at a lower cost at the heart of the enterprise

BOSTON (LinuxWorld Conference& Expo 2005)
February 15, 2005

Novell today announced its plan to expand its presence at the heart of the enterprise: the data center. Leveraging the common code base of its SUSE® LINUX Enterprise Server, Novell is broadening its data center solutions to complete its portfolio of enterprise computing solutions which currently include workstation, workgroup and high-performance computing offerings.

“Expanding our offerings in the corporate data center is a natural for Novell and Linux given our history with operating systems, high-availability solutions and virtualization – and our customers are demanding it,” said Jack Messman, Novell chairman and CEO. “Key data center requirements are reliability, availability, scalability, manageability and performance. By combining Novell's market-proven enterprise expertise with strategic partner offerings and open source solutions, we will meet those requirements using Linux. Novell will give data center customers the functionality they need at a lower cost and with greater choice and flexibility.”

The data center is home to an enterprise’s most vital applications and databases, and Novell's data center strategy centers on providing the crucial technology components to support moving mission-critical line-of-business applications such as enterprise resource planning (ERP), customer relationship management (CRM) and supply chain management (SCM) from UNIX to Linux. Linux is rapidly being adopted and accepted, moving from performing IT infrastructure services, toward the heart of the enterprise, the data center.

The increased performance and scalability of high-performance computing on SUSE Linux, along with the lower costs of Linux, are also driving demand for Linux in business-critical roles. Recently announced certifications on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server by SGI high-performance computing hardware and Unisys servers demonstrate the growing demand for Linux.

Dave Parry, SGI senior vice president and general manager, Server and Platform Group, said, “We at SGI have no doubt that, as a disruptive technology, Linux can address today's toughest challenges for scientific, engineering and creative IT users. Already our mutual customers have seen tremendous results from the collaboration between Novell and SGI. We will continue to leverage this collaboration to ensure that our customers have a Linux solution capable of addressing even their most demanding future challenges.”

Novell® and Linux in data center environments will mean:

  • Improved data center manageability
  • Better utilization of data center resources
  • Increased application scalability and performance
  • Reclamation of unused computing capacity
  • Longer life for business-critical legacy applications
  • Increased stability and security of data center resources and assets

Novell's data center strategy will enable customers to take advantage of the key benefits provided by Linux and open source: lower total cost of ownership, the declining cost and increasing functionality of hardware and software, and the emergence of community-based technology that is capable of meeting the needs of corporate computing. There are many well-established vendors working to meet the diverse needs of corporate data centers today. Novell will provide infrastructure that supports and is compatible with existing data center applications and solutions.

“Adoption of Linux in the data center is beginning to accelerate dramatically,” said Stuart Cohen, CEO of Open Source Development Labs (OSDL), a global consortium of IT vendors and enterprise Linux customers promoting the adoption of Linux. “Today's announcement by Novell is evidence that customers can now begin to see Linux as an enterprise-wide computing platform suitable for a variety of workloads from workstations to the heart of the data center.”

Novell's data center focus areas will include:

  • Application infrastructure: Linux has emerged as the platform of choice for hosting business-critical applications, such as the Linux-hosted Apache Web server. Novell currently provides enhanced support for JBoss, the leading open source application server. This enhanced support makes SUSE Linux Enterprise Server the best choice for running J2EE applications on Linux. Novell is also driving further development of Linux as an application platform by supporting and sponsoring the Mono® project as well as supporting the Eclipse project. In addition, Novell's exteNdTM suite aids developers in building applications and will help drive stronger support for applications running on Linux in the corporate data center.
  • Storage software: Novell will deliver clustering and high-availability solutions that focus on storage resource management and clustered file systems, including support for proprietary solutions, legacy solutions and emerging open source solutions. Novell is also bringing its traditional high-availability solutions to Linux, including Novell Cluster ServicesTM and Novell Business Continuance Clustering. In addition, Novell will continue to partner to enhance Novell's data center solutions, as evidenced by today's announcement with PolyServe to resell PolyServe Matrix Server virtual storage and clustering software.
  • Virtualization: Novell already provides virtualization technologies in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, being the first major Linux vendor to deliver user-mode Linux (UML) in the distribution. Novell will support the open source virtualization technology Xen, including Xen-based virtualization in its data center offerings as well as in the next releases of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and SUSE Linux Professional. An open source virtualization application, or hypervisor, spun-out from the University of Cambridge and developed and maintained by XenSource, Inc., Xen allows multiple operating systems to run concurrently on the same physical server, reducing the complexity of data center management and cost of ownership. Other virtualization partners include Egenera, Levanta, Virtual Iron Software and VMware. Virtualization technologies help enterprises make maximum use of hardware and software resources by allowing application environments to scale across all available computing resources. Virtualization also enables underlying and supporting hardware resources to be dynamically added to support application computing needs.

    “We are pleased with Novell's commitment to support Xen,” said Ian Pratt, University of Cambridge Computer Laboratory and founder of XenSource. “Including Xen in future versions of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server will allow companies to better utilize hardware resources through open source virtualization technologies, and benefit from the superb performance of SUSE Linux.”
  • Systems management: A leader in resource management with its ZENworks® product line, Novell will expand its capabilities to support data center requirements. Novell has already made important additions to Linux server management by adding full support for the Common Information Model (CIM), allowing standards-based management of Linux servers and resources. Novell will also use YaST as a data center management tool to aid enterprise customers.
  • Security: Novell’s vision of identity-based computing includes a security foundation for all layers of the computing environment, including the data center. Integration between the security and management frameworks is a critical element of Novell's data center offering, distinguishing it from other open source or competitive alternatives. Novell’s data center security will also include tight integration throughout the computing stack to include strong security, auditability and management.

Partner Support for Novell in the Data Center

Market leaders are expressing support for Novell's expanded Linux offerings for the data center.

HP Vice President of Linux Martin Fink: “HP sees virtualization as a key component to becoming an Adaptive Enterprise as it enables customers to dynamically and efficiently shift resources to meet their changing needs. Novell's support and integration of open source virtualization technology in its data center offerings, as well as in future releases of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server and SUSE Linux Professional, is an exciting development and shows strong growth for the industry.”

Intel Vice President of Sales and Marketing Group and General Manager of Channel Software Operation Shane Wall: “64-bit Intel Xeon processor-based platforms are ideal for the most demanding applications in the data center. With Novell's focus on the data center, customers will have the opportunity to lower their IT costs by moving business-critical applications to Linux on stable, Intel-architecture-based platforms.”

Oracle Vice President of Technology Marketing Robert Shimp: “Oracle's robust, proven software has been the heartbeat of IT data centers for many years. With the unique and compelling combination of Oracle Database 10g RAC and Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9, customers receive a highly reliable, scalable, available and secure solution to deploy and manage Grid computing within their data centers.”

Availability

Novell data center offerings will be available later this year. Pricing and availability will be announced with each new offering. For more on Novell's Linux strategy and complete line of Linux offerings, see www.novell.com/linux

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About Novell

Novell, Inc. (Nasdaq: NOVL) is a leading provider of information solutions that deliver secure identity management (Novell Nsure™), Web application development (Novell exteNd™) and cross-platform networking services (Novell Nterprise™), all supported by strategic consulting and professional services (Novell NgageSM). Active in the open source community with its Ximian® and SUSE Linux brands, Novell provides a full range of Linux products and services for the enterprise, from the desktop to the server. Novell’s vision of one Net – a world without information boundaries – helps customers realize the value of their information securely and economically. For more information, call Novell’s Customer Response Center at (888) 321-4CRC (4272) or visit www.novell.com. Press should visit www.novell.com/pressroom.

Novell, Mono, Nsure, Ximian and ZENworks are registered trademarks; exteNd, Novell Cluster Services and Nterprise are trademarks; and Ngage is a service mark of Novell, Inc. in the United States and other countries. SUSE is a registered trademark of SUSE Linux AG, a Novell business. *All third-party trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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