NetWare sales revive in China thanks to that man Snowden

If it ain't Microsoft, it's in fashion behind the Great Firewall


Worries about US spying in China have sparked new interest in Novell's venerable NetWare product line.

NetWare ruled the LANS of the early 1990s, providing file, print and directory services in the days of client/server. Like so many other companies of the era, Novell struck trouble once Microsoft arrived in its patch. Windows NT 4.0's improved domain services, and strengths as an application server*, made life hard for Novell.

The company eventually decided to walk the open source path, developing NetWare Open Enterprise Server (OES) and offering customers the chance to use either a Novell kernel or that of SUSE Linux. In January 2014, OES recently received a second support pack for its 11th version, and continues to offer the file, print and directory services that made the company's name.

Boris Ivancic, the company's veep and general manager for Asia, today told The Reg that combination of features is proving popular in China, where net new sales of NetWare OES are on the rise.

Your correspondent joked that this might be attributable to the activities of one E. Snowden, late of Moscow. Ivancic quickly agreed, saying products that have nothing to do with Microsoft play very well in the Middle Kingdom at the moment.

Novell's not leading with NetWare these days. Instead, the company's talking up the combination of the “Filr” share 'n' sync tool and the ZenWorks Mobile Management tools as a fine way to provide mobile workers with access to on-premises file server. President and general manager Kathleen Owens says Novell customers are as keen as anyone else to support bring your own device (BYOD), and also just as keen to do so securely. Filr taps into Novell's directory services expertise – and integrates with other directories – to help make remote file access take place while conforming to other policies.

Keeping GroupWise customers on the platform is another priority, with pointing out the cost of a rip-and-replace project an argument that she said holds water with many users.

Novell's parent company Attachmate recently announced its intention to merge with MicroFocus. The combined entity will employ about 4,500 people and combine platforms, security, application re-platforming and application management. Combined revenues will exceed a billion dollars a year, making the group a more-than-decently-sized enterprise software player. ®

* Novell always felt that its NetWare Loadable Module application server deserved more attention than developers were willing to give it. And as it happens NLMs kinda almost live on. Here's why: the first commercial NLM was Cheyenne Software's ARCserve. Cheyenne was eventually slurped by CA, which only recently spun out ARCserve as an independent entity. I've no way of knowing if there's a single line of code that's made the journey.


Other stories you might like

  • It's one thing to have the world in your hands – what are you going to do with it?

    Google won the patent battle against ART+COM, but we were left with little more than a toy

    Column I used to think technology could change the world. Google's vision is different: it just wants you to sort of play with the world. That's fun, but it's not as powerful as it could be.

    Despite the fact that it often gives me a stomach-churning sense of motion sickness, I've been spending quite a bit of time lately fully immersed in Google Earth VR. Pop down inside a major city centre – Sydney, San Francisco or London – and the intense data-gathering work performed by Google's global fleet of scanning vehicles shows up in eye-popping detail.

    Buildings are rendered photorealistically, using the mathematics of photogrammetry to extrude three-dimensional solids from multiple two-dimensional images. Trees resolve across successive passes from childlike lollipops into complex textured forms. Yet what should feel absolutely real seems exactly the opposite – leaving me cold, as though I've stumbled onto a global-scale miniature train set, built by someone with too much time on their hands. What good is it, really?

    Continue reading
  • Why Cloud First should not have to mean Cloud Everywhere

    HPE urges 'consciously hybrid' strategy for UK public sector

    Sponsored In 2013, the UK government heralded Cloud First, a ground-breaking strategy to drive cloud adoption across the public sector. Eight years on, and much of UK public sector IT still runs on-premises - and all too often - on obsolete technologies.

    Today the government‘s message boils down to “cloud first, if you can” - perhaps in recognition that modernising complex legacy systems is hard. But in the private sector today, enterprises are typically mixing and matching cloud and on-premises infrastructure, according to the best business fit for their needs.

    The UK government should also adopt a “consciously hybrid” approach, according to HPE, The global technology company is calling for the entire IT industry to step up so that the public sector can modernise where needed and keep up with innovation: “We’re calling for a collective IT industry response to the problem,” says Russell MacDonald, HPE strategic advisor to the public sector.

    Continue reading
  • A Raspberry Pi HAT for the Lego Technic fan

    Sneaking in programming under the guise of plastic bricks

    There is good news for the intersection of Lego and Raspberry Pi fans today, as a new HAT (the delightfully named Hardware Attached on Top) will be unveiled for the diminutive computer to control Technic motors and sensors.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021