Novell to deliver two new Linux products

Linux users seeking higher performance from their open-source operating system could be interested in two new products from Novell, which acquired German vendor SuSE Linux in November.

The two products, SuSE Linux 9.1 Personal and SuSE Linux 9.1 Professional, are based on the 2.6 kernel and include the latest GNOME (GNU Object Model Environment) 2.4.2 and KDE (K Desktop Environment) 3.2.1 desktop interfaces, Novell announced Thursday at the Cebit trade show in Hanover, Germany.

The professional version, targeted at Linux users requiring network or server functionality, runs on 32-bit processors as well as the Athlon 64-bit processors from Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) and Intel's extended memory 64-bit technology, according to Novell.

The product will be available on May 6 at and from bookstores and software suppliers. For US$89.96, customers receive five CDs and two double-sided DVDs (one for 32-bit processors, the other for 64-bit processors), containing more than 2,500 open-source packages.

The personal version, available on the same dates, will retail at US$29.95. The product, targeting desktop users exclusively, comes with two CDs.

The new 2.6 Linux kernel allows users to achieve higher performance with the same hardware, according to a company spokesman. It enables, for instance, high-quality music and video while other applications are started and run simultaneously.

In addition, kernel 2.6 provides an improved ACPI (Advanced Configuration and Power Interface), enabling more efficient power management and extending battery operation time for laptops.

The new GNOME desktop offers several new features, such as a universal instant messaging client and simplified printing configuration, as well a video conferencing system.

The new KDE version 3.2.1 features more than 10,000 improvements, including a new personal information manager, and a uniform interface for e-mail, calendar, address book and notes applications.

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