Novell unveils service provider programs

Novell this week is starting to offer the first of its programs for service providers -- programs analysts say will be instrumental to the company's recovery.

The company will announce Novell OnDemand Services, a series of directory-enabled tools that can be offered to customers on a fee basis for creating digital content such as software, music, documents and video.

Analysts such as Laura Didio of Giga Information, pin Novell's future success on creating revenue streams outside its traditional file and print network operating system revenue, which account for more than two-thirds of the company's profits. Dave Shirk, senior vice president of product management for Novell, estimates that by 2005, over half the company's revenue will come from fee-based hosting service agreements with service providers.

With OnDemand Services, service providers can offer access to applications such as Novell's NetPublisher, as well as content over the internet through a standard web browser. And because OnDemand is built on Novell Directory Services eDirectory, which runs on Windows NT, Solaris, NetWare and Linux networks, the service provider can manage all these services and users from a single management console.

OnDemand uses Novell's DirCommerce Engine, which allows services to be paid for through payment gateways, such as Authorize.Net. It also lets the service provider generate utilisation reports and provide that reporting capability to users so they can monitor their own use of services.

Licences to Novell OnDemand Services are available in July to members of Novell's Internet Commercial Service Provider program and are priced on a per-user, per-month basis.

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