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Novell's Chris Stone at the MySQL Users Conference 143

An anonymous reader writes "According to the MySQL User's Conference page, Chris Stone of Novell, the guy behind Open Source at Novell who was responsible for the purchase of SUSE and Ximian, will be speaking at the MySQL conference. Perhaps we finally get to see what Novell is planning to do with Linux?" (That conference is taking place in mid-April, in Orlando.)
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Novell's Chris Stone at the MySQL Users Conference

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  • Still waters (Score:5, Interesting)

    by LittleLebowskiUrbanA ( 619114 ) on Saturday March 06, 2004 @11:54PM (#8489041) Homepage Journal
    run deep. Can't wait to what Novell does after they've gathered all of this knowledge and all of these developers to their helm.
    Maybe offer an Open Source replacement for Active Directory?
    • Re:Still waters (Score:4, Informative)

      by Huk ( 640468 ) on Saturday March 06, 2004 @11:56PM (#8489052)
      That would be a replacement for NDS, not AD. NDS is the replacement for AD. Novell did it first. I don't particularly like it, but it works fairly well.
      • Re:Still waters (Score:3, Insightful)

        by cbreaker ( 561297 )
        Why take things so litteraly? I think he means "an alternative to AD" since most people don't use Netware anymore.

        I think NDS is pretty good. As simple or complex as you need it to be. (AD on the other hand is complicated from the start.)
      • Re:Still waters (Score:5, Insightful)

        by DShard ( 159067 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @12:38AM (#8489213)
        NDS has been deprecated for years. E-Directory is the Novell directory now. E-directory uses a DB made by (I think) Brigham young uni for Genealogy research. You are right about MS was _way_ after novells entrance into the market. The real problem with AD is it is a horrible crossbread between a directory and their old domain system and that it isn't particularly standards conforment (surprise!)
        • Re:Still waters (Score:5, Interesting)

          by cbreaker ( 561297 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @12:43AM (#8489240) Journal
          "The real problem with AD is it is a horrible crossbread between a directory and their old domain system"

          Not only that, but the fact that AD is filled with nonsense.. much like the Windows Registry. Why couldn't they have made something that was more refined, slick, and easier to manage? They had every opportunity and they blew it big time.

          Oh well, that's Microsoft for ya.
          • AD is just a smelly hack. I strongly suspect that all the developers of AD were on LSD the whole time they were coding it.

            There really is no other explanation as why it's such a tangled ball of barbed wire.
    • Re:Still waters (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 07, 2004 @12:00AM (#8489075)

      Maybe offer an Open Source replacement for Active Directory?

      I wouldn't hold your breath. Novell is a proprietary company. Notice they didn't purchase Red Hat an open source company, who has adhered strictly to the open source philosophy e.g. not even including mp3 capability with XMMS. Novell purchased Suse, who still keeps Yast nice and proprietary. I see two proprietary companies taking what they can, but to some extent not wanting to share completely with the other children.
      • Re:Still waters (Score:5, Insightful)

        by ahillen ( 45680 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @07:08AM (#8490092)
        Novell purchased Suse, who still keeps Yast nice and proprietary.

        1. YAST might be proprietary, but it comes with the source and you can share it as long as you don't charge for it (and you can modify it and share the modifications)... I just say that because many people seem to think that YAST is a traditional closed-source only-available-for-money-from-SuSE type of application.

        2. SuSE keeps a somewhat stricter control (which boils down to: only SuSE is allowed to SELL it, others can only distribute it free of charge) on their setup program for their distribution, since this is the part the are able to differentiate from the other distributions. Apart from that they contribute a lot to different open source projects (Linux kernel, Xfree,KDE...), so calling them a proprietary company is a bit... strange.

        3. I think the reason for Novell buying SuSE is more based on opportunities (what company is available to buy) and the technical merit of SuSE. I don't think an evil, proprietary company bought a like-minded other (which seems to be the spin you want to give it).
    • Is it true that Active Directory really stores all the information in a MS Access database? Seems hard to believe, considering the security risk.
      • Re:Still waters (Score:5, Informative)

        by bernywork ( 57298 ) * <> on Sunday March 07, 2004 @01:02AM (#8489301) Journal
        It uses Jet, the same database format as what is used in Exchange. If you want more information a couple of technet searches should see you good. Note the use of edbutil to fix up active directory databases, and eseutil to fix Exchange database issues. If you look up a few of the articles on the net they also say that Active Directory uses the Jet database system as well.

        There is another post above mine saying people can get access to passwords etc. Yes true to some degree, but the password isn't stored in plaintext, its stored encrypted. So you either have to have physical access to the box, a tape backup (and hope the tape data isn't encrypted) or you need admin access. If you have admin access already it doesn't matter as you can reset passwords, or otherwise you can at least using something like pwdump and get a copy of the password list anyway. You shouldn't have physical access to the box if you aren't an admin either. So really, it isn't that insecure.

        Really, this isn't any more insecure than anything else. The password variables I don't believe passwords can be queried via. LDAP either. It just returns the data as "binary value".

        • Thanks for the clarification. I guess I just had a knee-jerk "Access == Bad" reaction. I suppose that if the place the AD database is stored is secure, then the database itself is secure, kind of like a shadow password file.
    • Im not so sure it would be open source, but i can almost promise you we'll see novell providing directory services for linux. Flame all you want if Novell ever decides to provide closed source software for linux, but keep this in mind.
      They appear to be acting honorably and in the best interest of OSS, and they can provide key components that Linux NEEDS. Its a good thing ;)
    • Re:Still waters (Score:3, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      We all ready have a alternative to AD.

      It's called OpenLDAP.

      NDS, and MS's crappy copy if it (AD), are both LDAP servers with a database of users and objects that they running in the background.

      OpenLDAP is Linux's implementation of it and can be used with linux distros my modifing the PAM authentifiaction rules of you computer.

      Also by adding Unix services to MS's AD you can use AD to authenticate Linux users and services against. And newer versions of SAMBA can provide the AD functionality of a w2k server
      • Re:Still waters (Score:1, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward
        OpenLDAP is a great project, don't get me wrong - however, eDirectory is much, much more scalable than OpenLDAP.

        NDS and eDirectory are not just LDAP servers - in fact, NDS provided no LDAP capabilities (there was a bolt-on NLM on NetWare to provide LDAPv2 access to it at one point). eDirectory provides a fully-compliant LDAPv3 interface. But to say that eDirectory is just an LDAP server is like saying that a Porsche is just a car.

        eDirectory provides many additional interfaces, including SOAP, XML, ADSI,
      • It is my experience that when people say "I want a directory for my infrstructure" (especially management), they really mean to say "i want a nice, easy, flexible and most of all pretty way of managing users for my systems. OpenLDAP, for all its nice features lacks in most cases the out of the box functionality (it is there, but you have to do a lot of work to make it happen for you) that most people would want. It lacks in most distros the default schemas all set up and ready to go for system authenticatio
        • Re:Still waters (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Jellybob ( 597204 )
          This is going to be completely useless (I can't claim to have much experience with LDAP, having given up setting it up every now and then), but I did see a program that does just that - provide a pretty frontend for OpenLDAP directories, and I know Red Hat/FC1 have the option of selecting LDAP as an authentication method during setup.
        • Re:Still waters (Score:5, Informative)

          by Erik Hensema ( 12898 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @06:15AM (#8489982) Homepage

          I'd LOVE to see a Linux distribution based entirely on an OpenLDAP infrastructure. Most of the technoligy is already there, it just has to be pieced together in a nice ready-to-go package.

          Here's what we already have:

          • OpenLDAP server. Nice and solid, but too hard to administer.
          • PAM. My workstation had been running for months without a /etc/passwd file. No problem whatsoever. Simply use pam_ldap and nss_ldap and you're set
          • Samba. Intergrates nicely with LDAP. When running as a PDC, Samba will change your unix password when your change your windows pass, and you can have linux to change your windows pass when you change your unix pass. This gives nice and transparent intergration without the user ever knowing that his password is stored in no less than three different hashes.
          • LDAP admin frontend. This is where the trouble starts. Mosts frontends are generic and therefore complex. Most admins simply want to store user accounts into a LDAP database, including telephone numbers, home address, etc. No really good interface which makes this task an easy one yet exists, AFAIK. A lot of bad ones do, however.

          YaST however does already have a simply LDAP tool to create users. YaST also makes setting up a LDAP client a breeze. Combined with Novell's knowledge on directories this could lead to an interesting development.

          • I don't understand what makes an LDAP directory so great for storing user details. At a place where I once worked we stored details in a relational database (Postgres) and that seemed to work well. There are probably other database systems that could be used too. Why LDAP?
          • Well, now that you reminded me ;-) SUSE do have some very cool directory/user management stuff against OpenLDAP - SuSE Linux Standard Server and SuSE Linux OpenExchange Server have a very nice management environment, that uses Samba, OpenLDAP, and all the other usual suspects and slap a pretty sane management frontend against it. it will do Windows Domains, so your windows users should be happy, and will also do Linux users. there are still some issues with using the same credentials against linux as well a
    • by mrscott ( 548097 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @01:46AM (#8489420)
      Novell doesn't need to create an open source directory since there are already plenty of directories that work well wtih Linux - including Novell's own eDirectory which is the successor to NDS. eDirectory is now OS-agnostic and doesn't even need NetWare to run. It's one of the reasons that GroupWise (also soon to be available natively under Linux) runs so well in Windows-only environments.

      Now... if we're looking for a *free* directory from Novell under Linux, don't hold your breath. eDirectory is an excellent product (beats AD in almost all areas, in my opinion) for which Novell should be paid.

      However, do take a look at Novell's site. At one point, they were offering something like 250,000 free eDirectory seats - the OS didn't matter.
      • Actually, with the eDirectory Redistribution Kit, you can get 250,000 user licenses for free for any of the supported platforms. (This is the offer you were referring to, and yes, the RDK is still available)

        eDirectory is plumbing, and Novell understands that - the value of eDirectory comes by having:

        1. Wide adoption of it as the core of identity management solutions, and

        2. Services that effectively leverage eDirectory to provide the value.

        Selling eDirectory doesn't make a lot of sense, but providing
      • IBM open sourced AFS (Score:4, Interesting)

        by mdfst13 ( 664665 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @02:47AM (#8489578)
        IBM open sourced AFS, so there is some precedent. Of course, AFS's reliance on root servers (to integrate the different AFS cells; what allows to cd into or make it a stronger commercial open source candidate (i.e. potential revenue is more from leasing root server access than selling client or normal server licenses anyway). Still, anything that centralizes file serving can lead to support contracts, etc. that can justify open source development.

        Open sourcing would also allow integration of open source tools like MySQL or ReiserFS.

      • eDirectory is an excellent product (beats AD in almost all areas, in my opinion) for which Novell should be paid.

        Longtime Novell CNI/CNE here, and, for the record, I don't want to even pretend to hide the fact that I'm deeply skeptical of Stallman and his agenda.

        Something I've been wondering for the longest time: How does Novell compile & link NDS on Linux? For years, Novell was a Watcom C++ shop, but then Watcom assumed room temperature, and Novell seemed to be in bed with Metrowerks [at least tha

        • Starting off, the GPL (and LGPL) specificly allows for non-GPLd software to link against GPL stuff and not be contaiminated. The GPL specificly excluded the product of things like compilers (or text editor's, I suppose) from being contaiminated. Calls to functions provided by a GPLd package are ok. Calls accross the network to a GPLd server (like NTP) are even more ok. Think about IE connecting to an apache server (well, not apache - it doesnt have a viril license, but YKWIM).

          But you know that... The quest

        • Troll... not even a good one.
          gcc (GCC) 3.3 20030304 (Apple Computer, Inc. build 1495)
          Copyright (C) 2002 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
          This is free software; see the source for copying conditions. There is NO
    • Exactly. Whatever Novell does with Linux will be a good thing. Look at SuSE for instance.

      I think once the SCO vs. Novell lawsuit finally finishes, Novell can get back to doing more for the world.
  • Interesting (Score:5, Interesting)

    by SisyphusShrugged ( 728028 ) <.moc.draregi. .ta. .em.> on Saturday March 06, 2004 @11:55PM (#8489046) Homepage
    By making these moves they seem to be positioning themselves to be in a similar position to IBM, at least as someone at the forefront of Linux development and usage.

    This is an intelligent move as it allows them to move into an area (one of the few in the computing industry) not yet monopolised by Micro$oft!
    • Well, if what happened to Word Perfect is any indication of what Novell is planning, I would start being very worried.
      • Novell has different management this time around, and with people like you who can do nothing but point out their past failures, they know well enough not to let it happen again.
        • Novell has different management this time around, and with people like you who can do nothing but point out their past failures, they know well enough not to let it happen again.

          You say that like its a bad thing.

          • It's pretty irrelevent when the majority of the bad-decision makers aren't even there now, so it isn't fair to lump current management in with those losers.
            • It's pretty irrelevent when the majority of the bad-decision makers aren't even there now, so it isn't fair to lump current management in with those losers.

              Ya, the new losers deserve their chance to fuck things up.

  • ZDNet Face-to-Face (Score:5, Informative)

    by LinuxXPHybrid ( 648686 ) on Saturday March 06, 2004 @11:55PM (#8489048) Journal
    He appeared in ZDNet's Face-to-Face several months ago and he was talking about Novell's Linux strategy in the interview; here's the link (You need to scroll down one screen or so).
  • by oldosadmin ( 759103 ) on Saturday March 06, 2004 @11:58PM (#8489067) Homepage
    I don't know about you, but Novell is probably the only company I'd trust with this large a slice of the linux pie. They got royally screwed over by Microsoft (market share wise), and I'm sure more than one exec up there has thought about dethroning Gates.

    Plus, they bought one of the best implementations of Gnome and a great KDE implementation. I can see Novell bringing the linux desktop together in many ways.

    Anyone wanna bet we'll be seeing a Knome 4.0 release rather than a Gnome 4.0 and KDE 4.0?
    • by Anonymous Coward
      You trust them because they want to dethrone MS? That's pretty stupid if you ask me. There's a lot of companies out there that would love to dethrone Gates and Co. That doesn't mean that if/when that day comes businessmen worldwide will be running into the streets chanting open source. As bad as MS is, I'm convinced that Oracle would be far worse, and while IBM has a good name in the Open Source community now, I'm not convinced they'd handle that type of power again any better than they did the first ti
    • Anyone wanna bet we'll be seeing a Knome 4.0 release rather than a Gnome 4.0 and KDE 4.0?

      I was hoping for GDE 4.0
    • by Erratio ( 570164 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @12:22AM (#8489164)
      I don't see dethroning Gates as a motive which would inspire one to stick to the open source mentality. Collectively among the Linux, etc. community it's a good goal, but if that were a driving force behind a company then there would be definitely interest in maintaining an amount of power which conflicts with the communal aspect. The main motivation has to be something more along the lines of wanting the best software and realizing (or thinking) that open source is the way for that.

      Novell may be a good company for this because it seems as though they have a lot more to gain than their likely perceived losses, considering their current small foundation in these industries.
      • "The main motivation has to be something more along the lines of wanting the best software and realizing (or thinking) that open source is the way for that."

        While nice, this has never and will never be the reason a company ever does anything. However, if companies feel they have to do OSS to stay competitive then the end result could very well be better software, so I suppose it works out in the end.

    • Anyone wanna bet we'll be seeing a Knome 4.0 release rather than a Gnome 4.0 and KDE 4.0?

      Won't happen. Many of the basic differences between the projects aren't one of degrees, where you can find a middle ground. For toolkit, for example, you would need to choose between GTK and Qt - there is no average or middle ground there. Had either been significantly better than the other, it would have been easier, but, flame wars aside, both are mature, complete toolkits.

      And whichever way you choose, you loose mo
    • by bogie ( 31020 )
      " I don't know about you, but Novell is probably the only company I'd trust with this large a slice of the linux pie. "

      Why on earth would you just trust Novell automatically? Novell's cash cow has always been its proprietary technology. They are a proprietary company that although by no mean about to die has already seen its heyday. The adoption of Linux by Novell was a long term strategic move based on the fact that Novell wasn't going anywhere with its traditional technologies, and needed to buy someone
      • >Why on earth would you just trust Novell automatically?

        I've been using NetWare since 2.12. I trust Novell to make reliable software.

        >If they really want to befriend the Open Source community they could
        >start by opening up YAST and the Ximian connector. That would be a
        >real token of faith. Again, acquiring an Open Source company or two
        >and then just keeping the status quo doesn't mean much.

        They don't pretend to be Free Software idealists. They're Open Source pragmatists, trying to make mon
    • I sure hope you are the only one. Nobody should ever trust a company to do anything other than try to make money. Novell would screw Linux and sell us all into cocoa plantation slavery if they could double their profits doing it. What's more it is very doubtful that they're nursing a grudge against MS, more likely they just see Linux as the only way to escape the inevitable Netscapification of all of their products.
      • What's more it is very doubtful that they're nursing a grudge against MS

        This is true. Years ago they realized how self destructive it was to treat MS as an enemy when they were dependent on Windows for client development and in porting their server products to NT. When I was there for training some of the Novell employees I met were ex-Microsoft employees who were born in Utah. Maybe they just got tired of the rain in Seattle or wanted to go home and find a nice Mormon girl to marry. I don't know. But Nov

    • Anyone wanna bet we'll be seeing a Knome 4.0 release rather than a Gnome 4.0 and KDE 4.0?

      I hope not. Putting Linux on the desktop should not be about diminishing choice, it is about having choices.
  • Perhaps we finally get to see what Novell is planning to do with Linux?

    The largest ever set of SCO licenses purchased at one time.
    • The largest ever set of SCO licenses purchased at one time.

      Close. In a move to get more capital, they are going to sell SCO I giant stack of papers that is the 'source' to Linux. With that stack will be one that explains "This stack of papers belongs to you, you are free to modify it in any way or to sell it as you see fit". So they will get about 50 Million for the stack of papers. The sweet part is that when SCO sues everyone who is using Linux (because they now own it) It will take the judge about fi
  • its win win win (Score:5, Interesting)

    by buddha42 ( 539539 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @12:17AM (#8489140)
    Novel really has so much potential here and so much to offer I really can't wait for them to get moving.

    How about a cross platform groupwise based mail/groupware platform that can honestly compete with exchange?

    Or a active directory competitor based on NDS.

    Or a well respected certificate program.

    Best of all, a genuine compeitor to redhat, forcing some price and service competition.

    Between Novel, RedHat, and IBM the next few years are going to be amazing for linux. It would be nice if Sun would stop pussyfooting around, but they've got some issues to work out first.
    • Re:its win win win (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Groupwise does compete with Exchange (it's better in many people's opinion).

      Active Directory competitor? It's called eDirectory, and is far and away superior to AD. AD is crap, by the way, just crap.

      SuSE was already a genuine competitor. It's a much more globally used distro.
    • Re:its win win win (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Excuse me, an Active Directory competitor based on NDS?

      eDirectory scales to billions of objects, is built out of the experience Novell gained from NDS, and has more seats sold than Active Directory and Sun Directory Server combined. It runs on NetWare (obviously), Windows NT, Windows 2000, Windows 2003, Linux, AIX, HP-UX, and Solaris-SPARC.

      Having worked with Active Directory extensively (I was involved in planning a very large scale deployment of Active Directory - after 2.5 years, it's finally starting
    • Hope springs eternal but I would not hold my breath.

      Novell has always had fantastic products. Ask anybody who was/is a netware admin and I bet you can't get them to shut up about how great the products were. Same with zenworks or NSD/eDirectory.

      The problem is that Novell does not know how to sell. They have no juice with the magazines, they have no PR power. They can't create buzz and excitement about their products.

      Maybe things have changed over there, I certainly hope so, but I am not holding my breath
    • It's Novell, not Novel.
  • by Coryoth ( 254751 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @12:38AM (#8489217) Homepage Journal
    This will be interesting to hear indeed. ALl the other interviews I've seen (with Novell and Ximian staff for instance) have implied that this really is the new direction for Novell - that is, that from top to bottom Novell has grasped that open source is a powerful way forward and is busy trying to absorb open source culture into their ranks. They went as far as suggesting that one of te reasons for the purchase of Ximian was integrate the Ximian staff into the company and thereby imbue the different divisions with an open source mindset.

    Of course all of that can quite easily be a lot of spin - some nice fluffy stories to keep the open source community on side. Then again, they prompty bought SuSE after that, so obviously they were still well interested in open source.

    The real promise of this is the concept of a big company really getting open source and moving to it in a powerful way. The credibility alone would be fantastic. Yes, IBM backs Linux, but not in the same way Novell potentially promises to. Right now IBM has Linux as a nice side project, whereas Novell is talking about swallowing open source to it's core.

    I look forward to seeing where Novell goes - it could be a very long way indeed.

    • Well, let's just hope they ARE interested in Open Source, instead of trying to write all these non-gpl applications that only work right on their distribution.
      • Well, let's just hope they ARE interested in Open Source, instead of trying to write all these non-gpl applications that only work right on their distribution.

        That's still to be seen isn't it. It's all very well to talk the talk (which they've been doing a good job of so far), the reall question will be how well they follow through with it.

        My personal guess is that Novell will remain fairly proprietary - There's too much invested in ZenWorks and the like to just open source it all now (from a politcla,
        • I don't see anything wrong with that. I figure they can drive the adoption of linux once they get all the kinks out of integrating edirectory and zenworks and linux.

          Combine that with groupwise and you have a compelling enterprise story to tell. Basically you can do anything AD/sql server/windows/exchange/outlook can but cheaper and better.
  • by Admiral1973 ( 623214 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @12:51AM (#8489269) Homepage
    I think Chris Stone is more likely to reveal new strategies for Novell and Linux at the first keynote speech at Brainshare 2004. I'm sure he'll have similar things to say at the MySQL conference, but I hope that those of us who attend Brainshare get the scoop first. I'm looking forward to attending the conference again (I first went in 2002); Chris Stone was the featured speaker at the first keynote then, and he was entertaining and informative. Something about being a former drummer for Aerosmith seems to help him with crowds.

  • by rjamestaylor ( 117847 ) <> on Sunday March 07, 2004 @01:31AM (#8489380) Journal
    But if Chris Stone says anything about "Monetizing Linux" or Open Source, please stand up and walk out. That's what should have happened to Darl Gates, er, McBride when he said he was going to turn Caldera/SCOGrope into "bottled water" sellers.

    Novell is a Good Guy right now but Can'O'Pee and SCOGrope come from Novell...albeit an earlier incarnation with Noorda.

    Companies, especially publicly traded ones, have loyalties to stockholders and are subject to spot-on 180's in pursuit of increasing stockholder value.

    So, no offense, Novell and Chris, but I think you understand why we might be liking to keep things platonic right now.

    Keep it up, Novell. You're winning many new friends.

    • They're not exactly new to the OSS movement.

      From Chris' bio:

      "Chris has been working with and around Open Source and Linux technology since 1997. He initiated the Open Source Review Board in 1997 to help Novell migrate services to Linux."
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Does anyone else see this as essentially an admission of defeat? A panicked, last ditch attempt to find some avenue for revenue/sales growth given that Novell has basically no customers other than legacy customers, for whom the pain of migrating to a better enterprise networking architecture exceeds the pain of inertia? How exactly -Chris Stone's eloquent yet content-free market-speak aside- does Novell intend to create a business around this open source architecture? What VALUE is Novell adding? What's the
  • by Twid ( 67847 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @02:26AM (#8489519) Homepage
    For Novell, I think the biggest challenge is to keep revenue stable while customers transition from NetWare to Linux, without losing too many customers to Windows in the process.

    NetWare is still pretty expensive on the server. A 50-user copy is about $150 a seat on CDW retail ($7,500), about $50 a seat under a licensing agreement ($2,500).

    SuSE is $999 per server with no client licenses fees.

    Figuring NetWare to be about 50% of Novell's one billion in revenue, that means Novell would stand to lose more that 25% of their total revenue assuming everyone switched to SuSE. Novell might make this up with SuSE/Ximian desktop revenue, but I see large amounts of revenue from Linux on the desktop as being a long time in the making.

    The estimates for SuSE revenue for 2003 were for about $40 million in revenue. As near as I can tell Ximan never really made any money to speak of.

    So, if I haven't bored anyone to death yet, Novell NetWare is a $500 million revenue stream, SuSE is a $40 million revenue stream. Novell needs to very carefully transition from NetWare to SuSE if they want to keep revenue even. They can also grow by taking customers from Microsoft or Red Hat. But, it appears to me that Novell will have to shrink about 25% in size in order to remain profitable in the short term. Red Hat, with a more mature Linux strategy, only made $100 million in the last four quarters.

    None of this is a bad thing, and I wish Novell the best of luck. I used to work there, and I still have friends there. Just doing the math though it seems like they will need to get smaller before they get bigger again.

  • Transition to Linux? (Score:2, Informative)

    by CycoChuck ( 102607 )
    I'm hoping that Novell will make transition tools so that you can easily move user data from NetWare over to Linux. Although I do like the NetWare servers at work (our 3.5 server has gone 3 years without reboot) the user and server licenses are too expensive.
  • by PB8 ( 84009 ) on Sunday March 07, 2004 @03:39AM (#8489711)
    It's a very wild guess, but think about it. Novell already has the Ximian desktop and now SuSE. Next, try to get a key piece of the LAMP server , and what's more central to most current web content packages than MySQL?
  • More information. (Score:2, Informative)

    by perlplex ( 683245 )
    If you're interested in the services Chris offers, visit his homepage: []
  • Replace Sybase: Use MySQL. Implement Ximian as a desktop replacement for Windows. Bring solid terminal services to Novell. That is all.
  • by Anonymous Coward if Novell could bring in some of the guys from Boston(Ximian) and Germany(Suse) for say a weeklong brainstorming session in Utah. Now, I don't know if Novell even really has a desktop strategy and they might be happy doing some directory services stuff on Linux as well as other server stuff, but it wouldn't hurt.

    There's not going to be some Knome like someone else hypothesized about, but what we could see are some ideas about how Gnome and KDE can play nicely together. To me, KDE has always been ab
  • by James Youngman ( 3732 ) <jay&gnu,org> on Sunday March 07, 2004 @06:19PM (#8493022) Homepage
    Matt Asay [], Director of Novell's Linux Business Office, spoke at the recent UK Unix Users' Group Winter conference [], as did David Axmark [], one of the founders of MySQL AB.

Federal grants are offered for... research into the recreation potential of interplanetary space travel for the culturally disadvantaged.