Novell hopes that the on-time delivery of both its next-generation NetWare 5 operating system and Version 2.0 of NDS (Novell Directory Services) for Windows NT will prove that the once endangered company is back in the game.
Novell is expected to announce NetWare 5 is now shipping - ahead of its original ship date of Sept. 20.
Last week the company released the open beta release of NDS for NT 2.0. The main enhancement with this version is it supports branch offices, while the first incarnation was usually deployable only in headquarters because it required the presence of a NetWare server, according to Michael Simpson, Novell's marketing director.
"While the first release of NDS for NT was a bold move, NDS for NT 2.0 sports a much better design because it hosts NDS natively on NT instead of rerouting requests," said Neil MacDonald, an analyst at the Gartner Group.
Other enhancements include management of NT file shares, increased scalability, enhanced password synchronisation, and the capability to run Novell's ZENworks management solution on NT, Novell said. NDS for NT can be used to manage users and groups with Novell's NWAdmin and/or Microsoft's User Manager, according to the company.
"We provide better management of Microsoft utilities than Microsoft," Simpson said.
NDS for NT 2.0 supports all versions of NetWare and NT. Future versions will support Windows NT Server 5.0 and Active Directory. The commercial version of NDS for NT 2.0 is expected to ship in the fourth quarter, and pricing will be announced then.