Novell BrainShare: March 17 Recap
Novell didn’t deliver any home-run news during BrainShare on March 17, but the software company did manage to smack a few solid singles during the day. Overall, the buzz from Utah sounded pretty upbeat. Here’s a look at Monday’s developments, and The VAR Guy’s take on the situation.
1. The SAP Connection: Novell and SAP said they are working more closely than ever. The VAR Guy was a bit underwhelmed. Novell taking the stage with SAP is a bit like Donnie sharing a spotlight with Marie (i.e., we sort of assume they’re on good terms with each other).
Novell and SAP announced considerable joint work back in May. It’s good to see continued progress, but news outlets proclaiming big news from Novell and SAP are guilty of piling on praise.
2. Global Reach: More than 5,500 attendees from nearly 60 companies are attending, according to Novell. That turn-out proves that Novell still has a partner and customer ecosystem in place. Few software companies can attract that type of crowd.
3. Announcing SuSE Linux 11: The VAR Guy didn’t spot any big surprises in this announcement. Familiar themes like green computing and virtualization continue to play well with customers but lack a “wow” factor since the terms are so mainstream at this point. On the desktop, The VAR Guy was impressed — and intrigued — to hear about collaboration and team conferencing capabilities that will land in SuSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 11.
Novell told The VAR Guy in recent days that the company hopes to win about 1 percent of the overall desktop market. Meanwhile, reports are also circulating that HP plans to preinstall SuSE Linux on selected systems in selected regions worldwide.
4. Moving Fast: Good to see Novell talking about the recent PlateSpin acquisition, which could make it easier to manage mixed Windows-Linux data centers. It would have been easy for Novell to say about PlatSpin since the acquisition is so new. Instead, Novell sharpened its messaging on PlateSpin.
5. New Partners: Novell signed up more than 150 new partners in Q1, including a bunch of identity and security management partners, according to CEO Ron Hovsepian. The VAR Guy hopes to interview Novell’s Channel Chief this week for more in-depth info about the new partners. In the meantime, you can check out this recent post about Novell’s Channel Strategy.
6. Missing ISVs: Plenty of ISVs offer applications on SuSE Linux. But there isn’t much — if any — news from key players like MySQL, Oracle, Lotus, Sun, SugarCRM, etc. Oracle gained a passing mention in some news about Unix-to-Linux migration, and IBM spoke a bit about Lotus support in a some statements about SuSE Linux 11.
But herein lies Novell’s biggest challenge: Lots of ISVs support SuSE … but they don’t come forward to brag about that support. Of course, The VAR Guy could be off base here. BrainShare has only just begun, and more news will follow in the days ahead. The VAR Guy has three friends at the event who are sending along their observations. So far, they’re relatively update. Check back for a March 18 recap of Novell BrainShare.