Novell has acquired a directory-based software company Novetrix in an attempt to bolster its OnDemand client-server application delivery product.
The client-server computing model has enjoyed a renaissance of sorts with the growth of application service providers (ASPs) and the prevalence of the Internet enabling enterprise customers with branch offices to centralise IT resources. As such Novell plans to integrate Novetrix's DeFrame software, which allows delivery of applications such as Microsoft Office through a Web browser from a Windows terminal server, with its own OnDemand Services version 1.5.
Novell's Australasian managing director Ashley Wearne claims the move "is another step in developing our Net Services software strategy", but effectively sees the company go head to head on technology with application delivery specialist Citrix Software.
Although the details of the acquisition have not been released, Wearne confirmed Novell would be targeting the new-look OnDemand product at both the ASP and enterprise markets.
"The ASP model has been stalling a bit because [application vendors] are not happy with the way their products are being licensed, but this acquisition fixes these issues," said Wearne.
Novell's Net Services strategy revolves around hosting applications at a central location within an organisation (or ASP) and providing users access to these applications via the Web. According to Wearne, Novell's OnDemand software suite has the ability to alleviate ASP licensing or leasing problems by quantifying how many people are using a certain application and for how long.
Wearne said Novell is currently rolling out its Net Services strategy using the OnDemand software suite throughout its own branch offices in Australia and is in negotiations with a range of integrators to begin reselling the solution.
"We have experienced a 10-fold increase in performance and a 30 per cent reduction in cost," Wearne said. But Novell is not looking to exclude smaller channel companies from selling the solution by only signing with large consulting firms.
"You'd be surprised [who we're talking to], this resonates well with smaller resellers who can see the value in taking this to their customers who might have an office in Brisbane but only a small office in Sydney and Melbourne," revealed Wearne.
Wearne also expects Novell to begin seeing significant revenues from the initiative within the next six months.
Photograph: Novell's Australasian managing director Ashley Wearne.