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Novell and Sydney reseller negotiate dispute

Novell and Sydney reseller negotiate dispute

A search of premises and subsequent court action has marked a now-resolved dispute between Novell and Sydney-based reseller Real Tech Systems Integration. RTSI's principal, Richard White, says his company and Novell have been locked in discussions for two weeks since the joint agreement to move the case out of the courts and into the realm of commercial negotiations.

The action follows a search of RTSI's premises in inner-western Sydney by Novell on 21 June for [original equipment manufacture OEM] NetWare software, allegedly imported into Australia in an illegal form. OEM software is sold to a distributor under a contracted condition that it be "bundled'' with hardware. The software targeted by Novell is NetWare that is allegedly "unbundled" from the hardware, in violation of that contract.

White says the Novell search was undertaken with RTSI's consent. "We have given Novell full access to the records they've requested with a view to helping them solve the problem," he said. It is understood that Novell has conceded that RTSI is not responsible for any unauthorised or illegal importation of Netware product. According to White, the reseller's agreement to deal in Novell NetWare remains unaffected by the incident and subsequent action.

In a statement issued exclusively to Australian Reseller News, Novell and Real Tech said "[RTSI] has made every effort to assist Novell in determining the source and validity of these 'OEM' licences. Novell has agreed to provide replacement software to Real Tech and its customers for any licences which it has concerns about. Real Tech has an ongoing commercial association with Novell and will continue to sell Novell NetWare as part of the services offered to its customers. Both Real Tech and Novell are keen to see there are no interruptions to the 300-odd LAN and WAN sites serviced and maintained by Real Tech."

White says the two parties finalised outstanding issues at a meeting in Sydney last week. He stressed that the company was anxious to maintain its sound relationship with Novell.

RTSI - a six-person company based in Alexandria in Sydney's inner west - has been reselling Novell products for about four years. The negotiations follow Novell's recent public stoush with Melbourne-based reseller Alloy Computer Products, who angrily denied allegations by Novell that it was selling NetWare products illegally.


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