Novell & SUSE:
Late last month, The Attachmate Group, a software holding com- pany, completed its acquisition
of Novell. Moving forward, Novell
and SUSE Linux will operate, alongside NetIQ and Attachmate, as four
separate business units—a reorganization that unravels the 2003 SUSE
acquisition that established Novell
as a Linux and open-source player.
In the years following its SUSE
pickup, Novell trumpeted its new
open-source direction so loudly that
it’s tough to imagine what a SUSE-free Novell will look like in the future.
Between its SUSE Enterprise Linux
operating system, its patent and collaboration deals with Microsoft, and
its open-source implementation of
.NET with Mono, Novell had taken a
sane middle path between Microsoft
and Linux-centric approaches.
After having situated SUSE at the
core of its product line (dumping the
Net Ware OS for the SUSE-based Open
Enterprise Server), Novell has to figure
out where it fits in today’s IT landscape. Conversely, the future seems
brighter for SUSE. Though it took a
lot of heat in the open-source community for its association with Microsoft, SUSE picked up more enterprise
clout during its time with Novell.
As for figuring out its place in the
IT landscape, my review of SUSE
Manager (on page 44) indicates the
opportunities available. The product
is based on Red Hat’s open-sourced
management product, Satellite.
Though Satellite supports only Red
Hat Enterprise Linux, SUSE Manager
embraces SUSE Linux and RHEL.
When the No. 1 vendor in your field
makes a point of releasing its works
under an open-source license, it’s not
too bad being No. 2. There are more
enterprise open-source opportunities
out there than Red Hat alone can seize.
I’m interested in seeing how
aggressively a SUSE that’s unburdened from Novell’s legacy product
lines takes advantage of its No. 2 spot
by adjusting its products to better
draft on the Linux leader.
Google Chrome ad sows
seed for Chrome OS
The new Google Chrome Web rowser TV ad, “The Web Is What You Make of It,” shows
a father who sets up a Gmail account
for his daughter. He emails her
photos from Google’s Picasa Web
Albums and uploads videos from
You Tube. The father is accessing this
Web-based email, photo and video content from the Chrome Web browser.
Given the emotional content of
the ad, it would be easy to overlook
Google’s broad message: People can
host email, photo and video content
in Google Web services such as Gmail
and access it from Chrome forever.
Sure, Google is looking to increase
exposure for the Chrome browser.
But the company will rack up only
so many users via the download
route, so where else can it build
market share for its browser? Via the
Chrome operating system, which
is expected to arrive on netbooks
and/or notebooks this summer.
As a lightweight, the Web-based
Chrome OS is a departure from the
Microsoft Windows or Apple Mac oper-
ating systems that reside locally on—
and serve as the central command
for—PCs and laptops. Chrome OS is
the platform on which the Chrome
browser will run. Chrome browser is to
Microsoft Internet Explorer as Chrome
OS is to Microsoft Windows—only it
will run entirely in the cloud.
Getting the picture? With Chrome
and Chrome OS, Google is preparing for a full-frontal assault on the
Windows personal and professional
computing dynasty. Spotlighting
Chrome on TV will build awareness
for the coming Chrome OS push.
Microsoft’s BlackBerry deal
What’s Microsoft’s deal with Research In Motion? Micro- soft wants to make its Windows Phone 7 platform a hit with
both consumers and businesses,
which places it in direct competition with RIM’s BlackBerry franchise. And when Microsoft finally
starts its hard consumer-tablet push,
those devices will presumably go
head-to-head with RIM’s PlayBook.
Yet the companies have locked
themselves into a deepening set of
partnerships. First, there was the
agreement to port cloud services such
as Office 365 onto the BlackBerry
and the new PlayBook tablet, with
RIM’s BlackBerry servers connecting
“cloud to cloud” with Microsoft’s