Dell to Install Novell System Onto Servers

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Dell Computer Corp., Round Rock, TX, and network software maker Novell Corp., Provo, UT, have broadened their strategic alliance to include a sales licensing agreement and factory installation of Novell's NetWare operating system onto Dell's PowerEdge servers.

The expanded alliance lets Dell, a firm that with sales of $15.2 billion in the last four quarters is the world's leading direct sales computer company, offer Novell's NetWare and upgrades of NetWare to its corporate customers. Dell will factory-install Novell's NetWare on its high-performance PowerEdge server before delivery. The service should make the setup and rollout of PowerEdge servers running NetWare faster and cheaper for customers. Dell also can sell the software uninstalled.

"We've stepped up to the next phase in our relationship, where we'll offer more services and products to our mutual customers," said Dave Trotter, vice president of channel and original equipment manufacturer sales at Novell.

Because the two systems are bundled together for easier purchase, the companies are doing more than merely tapping into each other's markets.

"That's one advantage. The other is that we're offering … the ability to give [customers] the most powerful servers and the most powerful network operating system all in one purchase," Trotter said.

As part of the factory installation program, Dell will provide 30 days of first-level support for NetWare. Options on Dell's support program, DirectLine, are designed to give more levels of support to the customer and maintain a single contact point for hardware and software issues.

A Dell spokesman said the company is aiming for a broad range of customers, to include its large corporate base as well as the small-office/home-office markets.

Dell has had an alliance for eight years with Novell, which began shipping NetWare 5 to customers the week of Sept. 7, 10 days earlier than expected. The software is designed to centralize management of applications, desktops, users, data, printers, protocols and other network components. In October, Novell will start a 50-city promotional tour in the United States and Canada for NetWare 5, which has a suggested retail price of $1,195 for a five-user starter pack.

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