Novell has revamped its product portfolio as it prepares to take on Microsoft in the growing Internet services marketplace.
Kicking off its BrainShare conference, Novell introduced enhancements to its Net services software portfolio (called One Net) which it hopes will be more compelling to firms than Microsoft's .Net strategy for turning software into services.
Novell's future chief strategist (and departing CEO) Eric Schmidt refused to let Microsoft initiatives such as "HailStorm" rain on the launch of extensions to Novell's One Net products. And in true Novell-style, he labelled Microsoft's efforts as "vapourware".
At BrainShare, Novell announced wireless technology for its directory products which will make it easier to use eDirectory with cell phones and personal digital assistants. And eDirectory will now work with Compaq Tru64 Unix and IBM AIX operating systems.
The firm also announced the availability of Novell Portal Services which is designed to integrate ebusiness applications within corporate portals.
Novell also launched NetWare 6.0 as Internet print, file and storage services which can be integrated with customer's accounts.
Moving away from its traditional focus on technology, Novell was keen to concentrate on the recent acquisition Cambridge Technology Partners and its role in improving Novell's services and consultancy business.
It also trumpeted industry partnerships, (storage giant EMC is an example), and customer wins as evidence that its business is turning around after a number of disappointing financial results which were followed by layoffs last year.
Most industry observers believe Novell has ceded the battle for control of the network operating systems marketplace to competitors like Microsoft and the Linux distributors, but it has a chance to redefine itself in the Internet services marketplace. ®
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