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March 22, 2005

Novell preparing desktop challenge to Microsoft

Novell is preparing to battle Microsoft in the arena of desktop software with the launch of its Linux Desktop 10.

By CBR Staff Writer

Speaking at the company’s annual BrainShare conference in Salt Lake City, Utah, yesterday, one senior company executive said Linux Desktop 10 will carry the suite outside of its current market of specific workgroup deployments and in to broader rollout across the enterprise.

Vice president of collaboration and desktop engineering Nat Friedman said: The next release of Linux Desktop will be ready to compete with Windows.

Novell’s challenge is a reversal of the company’s previous stance on Microsoft. Having been burned in network operating systems by Microsoft, the company has been eager to avoid another direct engagement with the Redmond marketing machine.

Novell Linux Desktop 10 will provide desktop search recently popularized by both Apple Computer and Google, and personal photo management, featured in Apple’s OS X.

The desktop search feature, codenamed Beagle, will search instant messages, mail and web pages. The F-Spot photo management feature will allow users to drag-and-drop icons onto a thumbnail image of the photo and the sort, edit and export images to online services such as Flickr and Web Gallery.

Friedman claimed Beagle beats Microsoft’s WinFS search architecture, which was originally due in the delayed Longhorn desktop operating system but that is now making its way into Windows XP and Windows Server 2003. Friedman said Novell is outpacing Microsoft on the desktop.

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