Microsoft and Novell to Push Linux, Windows CCS in China
Published: April 23, 2008
by Alex Woodie
Microsoft and Novell this week announced they will work to convert unsupported Linux users in China to Novell's SuSE Linux Enterprise, and to sell them maintenance contracts. The deal is an expansion of the five-year partnership Microsoft and Novell announced in 2006, and also includes a drive to sell more licenses for Windows Compute Cluster Server in dual-boot setups.
Microsoft says there are many organizations in China running unsupported versions of Linux, which puts them at risk for security breaches and downtime due to a lack of operating system patches and bug fixes, and also complicates future support and integration due to the high prevalence of forked code in the Linux family.
As part of Monday's announcement, the companies will engage in joint marketing and training efforts to push SUSE Linux Enterprise Server upon the rapidly industrializing Chinese marketplace. Microsoft, you will remember, bought $240 million worth of certificates to SUSE Linux Enterprise back in 2006 as part of its partnership with Novell. Microsoft in turn resells these coupons to customers, who redeem them for software and services from Novell. So far, Novell has sold $141 million worth of the certificates, the companies said.
Interestingly, the Sino-Linux deal also includes a drive to push Windows Compute Cluster Server--Microsoft's new high performance computing (HPC) operating system--running in a dual-boot configurations next to SUSE Linux on X86 and X64 servers. Virtualization software, either Citrix Systems' Xen or Microsoft's Hyper-V hypervisor, will be employed for dual-boot configurations.
Microsoft and Novell have already lined up their first SUSE Linux customers as part of the deal. They include the People's Insurance Company of China Group, the Dairy Farm Company, and Dawning Information Industry Co., all of which have bought three-year support contracts for SUSE Linux Enterprise from Microsoft.
The two companies will also be hosting round-table discussions with local chief information officers in several cities, including Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Shanghai, and Beijing. They will also run a virtualization customer pilot and conduct technology workshops to assist the conversion from unsupported Linux to SUSE Linux Enterprise Server.
Microsoft, like the Linux vendors, is ramping up sales efforts in China. However, considering that China is the world's largest market for pirated software, the software giant has more challenges in selling the proprietary Windows operating system, compared to Linux, which is open source and free.
Software Counterfeiting Ring Broken Up in China
Microsoft and Novell in Landmark Partnership
Post this story to del.icio.us
Post this story to Digg
Post this story to Slashdot