Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Why to hate Novell

Brian Caulfield, writing in Forbes: "Don't hate Novell because of its partnership with Microsoft. Hate Novell because its business stinks."

According to the story, "The problem? For the past 10 years, booming sales of cheap software from Microsoft and open-source software vendors have sapped sales of Novell's venerable NetWare offering."

Well, that plus Novell's feeble, ever-changing marketing strategies...

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The folly of its ways

Novell finally finished reviewing its stock options grants over the past dozen years, so they could release their quarterly and annual reports that had been delayed. That's the good news.

The quarterly for the 1st quarter of fiscal year 2007 (Nov 1 2006-Jan 31 2007) is the most recent financial report and its not good news. According to ITJungle, "When all the math was done and the taxes paid," the bottom line was "...a $19.9 million net loss, or about 6 cents per share, compared to a net profit of $1.9 million in the year ago quarter, or 1 cent a share."

The really bad news, though, was that Novell's "Workgroup" reporting group (NetWare, Open Enterprise Server, and GroupWise) posted sales of $104.9 million, down 11 percent, but it had an operating profit of $74.5 million, down 8 percent. As the story said, "You can see now why Novell hangs onto its NetWare and Groupwise business."

Too bad Novell's management didn't realize - even as often as we told them - that there was a market for NetWare, and it wouldn't cost a lot to pursue it. Just one more indication that Novell never did understand marketing.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Certificate? We don't need no stinkin' certificate!

Infoworld has just published what it claims are the "top 10 dead (or dying) computer skills." And, you guessed it, NetWare CNE is on the list.

The good news is that it's only #8 on the list (beating out "PC Network Administrators - why is that seperate?? - and OS/2).

Top among the dying are:

1) Cobol
2) non-relational databases
3) non-IP networks (and IPX isn't even mentioned, it's all about SNA)

Read the whole story, at least for the nostalgia.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Novell Technical Support Wins Awards

Once again, Novell Technical Support wins accolades from industry groups. The Association of Support Professionals has just named Novell as a "Best Web Support" winner for 2007, while the Help Desk Institute has honored Novell with its "Team Excellence Award for External Support."

novell's tech support has always been recognized as the gold standard that other companies should emulate, so once again I'd like to congratulate the wonderful men and women who work so hard to support the hardest working network managers in the world.

Friday, May 4, 2007

"Small" is not insignificant

Tim Wohlford published ("Charlie Chaplin and the SCO Penguin") some interesting insight into Novell's seemingly incomprehensible decision to do away with their Small Business Suite - both the Netware version and the SuSE one.

"It was a sad day when I realized that the Novell that I knew would never again be a vendor partner for me, or a viable business partner for my clients. I went to Brainshares, did beta testing for Novell, attended sales conference, have Novell jackets and mugs and tee shirts and backpacks and water bottles... but it was time to face facts."

He paints a compelling picture.