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Novell aims to manage virtualization

Novell aims to manage virtualization

Novell has unveiled new products for managing mixed virtualization environments

Novell is expanding its Zenworks software lineup to span from the desktop to the data center, unveiling three new products and an update to another tool.

The rollout announced included Zenworks Virtual Machine Management, which the company said would work in data centers using disparate virtualisation systems, including ones from VMware, XenSource and Microsoft. Novell also introduced Zenworks High-Performance Computing (HPC) Management, which manages Java applications and distributes workloads for parallel execution, and Zenworks Orchestrator for overall policy-based automation.

The company has also introduced Zenworks 7.5 Asset Management, which provides information about IT assets including Windows Vista and Novell's Suse Linux Enterprise Desktop 10.

Even as hardware and software virtualisation had cut costs and increased flexibility, data centers had been sprawling and their overall cost was going up, general manager of Novell's system and resource management business unit, Joe Wagner, said.

Enterprises needed tools to simplify, automate, manage and secure their systems, he said.

Novell, once king of the network-management hill, is struggling with tough competition and under fire from the open-source community for a recent technology and support deal with Microsoft. A possible delisting from the Nasdaq also looms amid an ongoing review of stock-option grants. By aiming to make sense of virtualisation, the company may tap into a growing trend.

Zenworks Virtual Machine Management was the first product of its kind for heterogenous virtual machine environments, Wagner said. The HPC Management tool can move large volumes of data to remote locations where resources are available to process it. Under the Orchestrator software, the product line can use policies to schedule jobs, reserve resources and change priorities on the fly when needed, according to Novell.

The product announcements didn't change Novell's relationship with Virtual Iron Software, Novell's vice-president of product management, Alan Murray, said. Earlier this year, Novell began providing support and application certification for Virtual Iron's virtualisation and management software in Suse Linux. Novell's new products wouldl interoperate with Virtual Iron's and the relationship is ongoing, he said.

Zenworks 7.5 Asset Management is available now for $US33 per user or managed device. The new products announced would be available in early December, and pricing for them would be disclosed at that time, Novell said.


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