Novell Taps Talarian for App Integration

Novell Inc. has decided to embed the SmartSockets publish/subscribe middleware from Talarian Corp. into its NetWare operating system, its Network Directory Services (NDS), and its future applications, confirmed officials from both companies.

The news came as Novell was hosting its annual Global Partner Summit this week in Phoenix.

Ports of the Talarian offerings are already under way and will be made available to approximately 65,000 Novell NetWare and NDS developers. Integrated products are expected within the first six months of this year, an industry source said.

In a "far-reaching" technology and marketing alliance, Novell will be giving future applications that run on top of NDS a new integration layer by melding SmartSockets into NDS, said Tom Laffey, Talarian's founder and chief technology officer.

The directory/middleware combination will allow NetWare and NDS developers to write and distribute applications that allow for event-driven information to move in real time across the Internet and across internal networks, Laffey said. Citing an example, Laffey said that a stock quote or a news bulletin could be sent out over the Internet in response to a user request via SmartSockets messaging, and its delivery would be controlled via NDS.

"It also allows users to integrate NetWare (via NDS) better into the open systems world," Laffey said.

The Talarian middleware will help Novell accelerate "the development of directory-enabled solutions used for messaging, finance, e-commerce, and many other areas of e-business," said Carl Ledbetter, Novell senior vice president for business and corporate development, in a prepared statement.

The combination might help users with the conundrum created by having a truly distributed systems architecture that still requires a centralized management view, said Karen Boucher, executive vice president at the Standish Group International, based in Dennis, Massachusetts. The tighter integration between NDS and SmartSockets will also eliminate the redundancy of having directory services for middleware links as well as one for the network, Boucher said.

The alliance might also give Talarian "a little bit of an edge over the competition," particularly Microsoft's Active Directory combined with Microsoft Message Queue Server (MSMQ), which is Microsoft's implementation of IBM's de facto Message Queue messaging middleware, Boucher said. The Active Directory/MSMQ combination "doesn't have the publish/subscribe functionality that SmartSockets has," she said.

The alliance was three months in the making and Novell reviewed other enterprise application integration (EAI) providers before settling on Talarian, Laffey said.

SmartSockets works via APIs (application programming interfaces) and class libraries that help developers create distributed systems linked in real-time.

This agreement will bring SmartSockets to 90 million Novell users and 70 million NDS nodes, including desktops, printers, and other devices, said Laffey, citing Novell's statistics.

Talarian Corp., in Los Altos, California, is located at http://www.talarian.com/. Novell Inc., in Provo, Utah, is at http://www.novell.com/.

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