Novell shows products, partnership at BrainShare

InfoWorld |  Networking

Rallying support from customers and partners, Novell Inc. on Monday here at its BrainShare user conference unveiled a partnership and slew of products and features designed to drive momentum behind its strategy for unified networks.

The Provo, Utah-based company announced a partnership agreement with storage vendor EMC designed to help customers manage storage-network systems. The Novell-EMC Cooperative Support Agreement will offer cross-company technical support to mutual customers via one call to either organization. By offering integration and interoperability of services, the agreement will help maintain uptime of business-critical storage systems, Novell officials said.

Additionally, Novell introduced a network attached storage device, dubbed Novell Network Storage Appliance. The device, which supports Windows, Unix, Linux, Macintosh, and Novell clients, is built on NetWare and incorporates Novell file system and security technologies.

For its eDirectory and eGuide products, Novell announced wireless technology designed to extend the products to hand-held devices and wireless networks. Wireless functionality will be integrated into eDirectory via a management framework tool that allows users to access or modify attributes in the directory through role-based services, according to Novell. The eDirectory management framework runs on Netscape and Internet Explorer and supports HTML, XML, and LDAP.

In addition, Novell rolled out eDirectory support for Compaq Tru64 and IBM AIX operating systems.

Wireless features integrated into the next release of eGuide, a Web-based service designed to connect people with places and information, will allow users to look up customers and employees from a cell phone or PDA and automatically initiate a call, instant message, or e-mail.

As expected, Novell officials at the show detailed a forthcoming feature of NetWare 6 code-named iFolder. The iFolder feature, which will also be sold as a standalone product, updates data across multiple workstations and Web devices, allowing users to retrieve data from any device.

The software combines storage, hosted back-up, and file synchronization functionality without the need for manual file transfers. The iFolder uses eDirectory or any other LDAP-enabled directory for secure user authentication. The company also introduced another feature of NetWare 6, Novell Internet Printing, which is designed to give users secure access to printers via a Web browser.

Other announcements at the show include Single Sign-on 2.1, which integrates v-GO technology form Passlogix, a password-management software vendor. Set to be available within 30 days, Single Sign-on 2.1 is designed to lower administration costs by providing centralized password management across multiple networks. Version 2.1 also extends platform support to Sun Solaris and Linux.

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