Network Log-Ins Eased Through NDS

Novell Inc. is looking to relieve IT managers of one of their biggest headaches -- password management -- with the release of Novell Single Sign-on.

For use with Novell Directory Services (NDS), Single Sign-on utilizes the password support within NDS and its SecretStore technology to store users' passwords, according to the company.

Using Single Sign-on, applications will have the capability to access users' passwords from the NDS SecretStore when they attempt to gain access to applications, thereby eliminating the need for multiple passwords for separate applications.

"We maintain separate passwords and store them with NDS in SecretStore, and NDS sends those passwords to the application in the background when the user tries to launch the application," said Paul Corriveau, NDS product marketing manager at Novell.

"This really alleviates password administration and contributes to the bottom line," Corriveau added.

Lotus has announced that Lotus Notes will support Novell Single Sign-on.

Single Sign-on also includes support for Entrust and PeopleSoft applications, as well as host emulation products from Attachmate and Wall Data.

Although NDS already included support for single sign-on for applications written specifically to NDS APIs, Single Sign-on adds single sign-on support to applications not specifically written to these APIs.

"Up until the announcement of this product, NDS could support single sign-on only for products that had been written specifically for NDS and the NetWare authorization services," said Jamie Lewis, president of the Burton Group, in Midvale, Utah. "If you were an application developer, you had to write to their API to get the benefit of single sign-on. Now it integrates with multiple systems."

Problems with the security of access and passwords have long dogged the use of single sign-on systems. However, Novell believes that because it provides encrypted links to applications, and encrypts the data itself in storage using 128-bit RSA encryption, usage will be secure.

"Nothing is totally safe, but the degree to which they have protected it is sufficient for what they are trying to do," Lewis agreed.

Novell Single Sign-on is available as an out-of-the-box solution and includes a toolkit available on the company's Web site for developers' use, according to the company.

"The toolkit is free on the Web for companies that want to develop their own homegrown applications for single sign-on on the Web," Corriveau said.

Novell Single Sign-on, Version 1.0, is available now priced at $26 per user. The product is supported on NetWare, Microsoft Windows NT, Sun Solaris, IBM OS/390, and Linux, and requires NDS.

Novell Inc., in Provo, Utah, can be reached at

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