Novell, Nortel in directory deal

Novell has signed up another networking partner to use its directory technology, formalising a partnership with Nortel Networks.

The strategic pact puts into action an agreement announced in 1997 for policy-based, directory-enabled networks.

It also follows a deal between Novell and Lucent that was detailed in October at NetWorld+Interop.

Nortel will integrate Novell Directory Services (NDS) with the Optivity Policy Services software being developed by Nortel's Bay Networks line of business.

The company announced it will license NDS for inclusion in the policy application, due for release in spring 1999.

A Nortel representative said last week that the company will follow through on announced plans to make Optivity Policy Services work with all major directories, including Netscape's SuiteSpot and Microsoft's Active Directory.

Policy-based network management, being developed by most major networking hardware vendors, will let administrators authorise users and prioritise traffic based on which jobs are important to the enterprise.

Users said policy-based systems must work with directories they already have.

"If I have to implement a new directory just to take advantage of this feature, it becomes too cumbersome," said Eric Kuzmack, a senior analyst at Gannett.

Nortel officials said integration of NDS will allow enterprises to base policies on user and resource identity regardless of where employees or devices are located.

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