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The Almighty Buck

Novell Launches Anti-Win2k Campaign 376

skajohan writes "Is it time for Microsoft to taste some serious FUD themselves? Novell has launched an anti-Win2k campaign. Surprise, surprise, they'd rather see us run Netware. It starts out with a rebuttal of previous MS claims. This can get interesting." If MS and Novell were running against each other for political office, newspaper editorialists would be muttering about "negative advertising" and "smear campaigns." These companies are not playing nice with each other.
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Novell Launches Anti-Win2k Campaign

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  • by Anonymous Coward
    The server version requires 108 megs of ram just to run and it uses over 2,200 threads. Go to www.firingsquad.com and learn how a dual cpu system underperforms a single cpu system with NT 4.


    There is no reason to use w2k server or even professional unless your an it professional who is expected to learn it(myself) :-(


    My old p150 with 64 megs of ram just can barely handle it in swap-file hell! Not to mention that there are so many hoops that the data goes thru, it slow down my actuall processing speed down to a crawl as well. I need to buy a 600 mhz althon (that I can't afford because I am entry level)with 256 megs of ram and a 20 gig hard drive just to learn it and not to actually do something usefull with it. :-(


    The sadest thing is that I didn't even load w2k advanced server because I know my system couldn't handle it.

    Oh ...and those wonderfull guys at microsoft deciced to to make my system easier to use by hiding all the administration tools so I have to load all the aplets up manually in the mmc console (shudder) and everything is embeded in this tiny and ugly console browser and the only way to administer remote machines with this obnoxious tool is thru...YOU GUESSED IT! ACTIVE DIRECTORY!

    Active directory can with only a few hundred users can easily saturate a 10 mps ehternet network and 100 mbps network is almot all gobled up by this piece of bloat. :-(



    I prefer NT 4 anyday and prefer to use pc-anywhere for support instead of active hell.


    THis is just my experience with wk2 beta3 and rc1.

    oh ya,, w2k can not use com 4 for some odd reason. IF you have a modem on com 4 then you need to change it to the other com ports and pray that there will not be any conflicts. Thanks Microsoft for taking away more valuable irq's and i/o ports by disabling com 4.


  • by Anonymous Coward
    It is a Network Operating system. The original versions required a dos partition for installation and booting but never used dos for anything else. It has its on file system among other things. Version 5 installs on boot up (using a built in copy of DR Dos). It is the first to have the console one qui. A java interface that most people dont bother to use. To launch the qui you type start x from the prompt. I think one of the reasons it is not commonly now by most people (even though it still has a pretty large market share) is that outside of a network file/print/app server enviroment it is useless. That means it is not that fun to learn or use in comparison to other operating systems. It also did not go over well with developers because prior to 4.X all programs loaded in ring 0 of memory and had to be written in C. Running in ring 0 increases perfomance but it is also where the kernel resides. If your app is not bug free then it could take down the entire server... This usually manifests itself in novells equivelent of a BSOD the dreaded Abend!
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Win2K Pro is great. Stability, performance, multimedia, power management, it's got it all. However basing your enterprise on Active Directory is nuts. NDS is the best, and will be for some time.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Lotus has a similar anti-MS FUD page up at http://www.lotus.com/home.nsf/welcome/itcentral1.

    Apparently posting these rebuttals is required if you are in compeitition with Microsoft. RedHat better get ready.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Sorry to hear about your woes with Netware, but about all I can say is that from my experience, it's either a bug in the hardware it's running on, a configuration issue (including a non core OS software issue), or an administration (human) issue. I doubt that it's the OS's "fault".

    From my perspective, albeit, running a much smaller network of about 175 users concurrently, and three servers, one NW 4.10 based, one NW 4.11 based, and the other NT 4.0 based, Netware is several orders of magnitude more stable than our "new" NT 4.0 system has ever been. And Netware is doing all of the file and print serving for all of the users.

    The Netware boxen run fairly basic, "homebuilt" hardware, PII 300 and a PII 266, each with 512MB RAM, one with 14GB (total) mirrored SCSI disks, the other with a much smaller 7GB (total) mirrored SCSI disks. Each with 100 Base T NIC's. Patches and upgrades current as of just before Christmas. Like I said, basic, and stable.

    In contrast, the NT box is a "store bought" dual PIII 500, 768MB ECC RAM, HW RAID controller, with 6 9GB UW SCSI drives in various volume sets, dual 100 Base T NIC's, running NT 4.0, Exchange 5.5, and Proxy 2.0. Serious overkill for what it's doing, and it's nothing but problems. And, every single piece of that server is in Microsoft's HCL. It's totally up to date, and it's so lightly loaded, it's pathetic. And it needs weekly reboots, ranging from services mysteriously dying and not being able to be restarted, to the sporadic BSOD STOP error when writing an archive CD for a client (or sometimes, shortly thereafter).

    Well before we moved into a two NOS, three server company, we ran a single Netware 4.10 box, P5-166, 192MB RAM. And it ran flawlessly for months at a time. I'm not one of these ultra-anal uptime freaks, but 274 days was its best uptime. Admittedly, I pushed that a lot longer than I should have, but if it worked, I wasn't about to "fix" it. The only reason it came down then was to finally install the current patches and backup software.

    I've gone through several gyrations of trying to pinpoint a specific hardware or software problem with the NT box, and finally have just given in to the fact that I'll be rebooting it every weekend for the rest of it's natural life.

    In contrast, I never had that problem with Netware - ever. The only times it's ever gone down "uncontrolled" was due to a hardware failure. Most often (exactly three times in my employ here) to a disk failure, and then only to a somewhat "crippled" state. Hardware fails, you can't blame the OS for that, not even NT.

    On the support side of things, I've needed to initiate an "incident" with Novell and Microsoft each once. Each time, if memory serves, it was around $200 for the incident. And, again, from experience, I found Novell's support staff much, much, much more knowledgeable, courteous, and helpful than Microsoft's staff. With Novell, the problem I was having actually turned out to be a backup software problem. Novell's support and software engineers worked with the backup software vendor, managed to fix the problem, and within about a week, I had not only a workaround for the problem, but confirmation that this would be fixed in the next software release (which it was). Well worth the money. On my Microsoft call, I quickly learned that I knew more about networks in general than the supposed expert I was speaking with, and when I asked specific questions of him at different points, I usually got either the obvious "BS your way out of it" answer, or no answer at all. I found them to be remarkably impolite and of very little help at all. Ultimately, Microsoft never proved any help in resolving that issue. I found the tidbits of information I needed to get things working on USENET. The money for the Microsoft incident would have been better spent on something more productive, like whitewashing the fence in front of the building - again.

    From my standpoint, Netware is still probably the most stable commercial file and print serving platform on the planet, and I don't see my opinion of that changing in the foreseeable future.


    Brad
  • What is the equivalent in the *nix world (if there is one)?
  • by Anonymous Coward
    It was news a few days ago, but management made the determination that more Banner click-through revenue could be attained by putting all the Lawsuit articles up on the page earlier in the week. The algorhythms in the perl source that determine what news articles to pull out of the queue is a highly optimized part of the Slashdot code based on clickthrough statistics, etc.

    Novell articles just don't bring in the revenue that lawsuit-about-DVD/MP3 articles do. But now it's the weekend and the dorm kids are sleeping off their Friday night drunk, instead of cutting class to reload Slash, etc. So it's Novell time, guys.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    High prices? Expensive support? Requires training? Which product are you talking about? That describes them both.
  • At my company of about 9000 people, we have been hearing about Win2K coming to our desktops in the very near future. There have been scripts that run at login to inventory all of the machines that are on the NT network, and it looks like reason has won out over some VP's insistence to go with the latest and greatest. Our Win2K deployment is off, and hopefully the IT wizards will push it off until Service Pack 2 or 3.
  • AND I hear OS/2's making a come back.
    AND Amiga too!

    I can't believe anyone these days even follows this.

    If I were Novell I would be afraid of making everyone else in the world double over with laughter at this point.

    It's over, ok? Give up.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Makes me glad we have AC accounts! Keep taking everything so seriously so trolls like me keep working harder!

    seriously, tho, this little tidbit was an actual article written by an xtian extremist (and i mean extremist) of the tender age of 16.

    so when the many ./ readers of that age group are reading, hacking or whaterver, there peers are writing hate-filled shit like this and calling it religion.

    think about that, huh?
  • Your explanation seems very fishy. Somehow I'd very much doubt that a company would get rid of expensive computer equipment by destroying it and having it disposed of, rather than doing it A) more efficiently B) less expensively and C) with an actual _use_ by giving it to charity. Isn't it a _complete_ tax write-off either way? And isn't it cheaper to call a charitable organization which would gladly pick up highly expensive equipment for free than to pay for special pickup services for the trash? Big computers don't go in the normal, paper-and-foodstuffs-type dumpster.

    --

  • Hmmm...would I rather be poked in the eye repeatedly with a dull stick, or with a sharp, but flaming, stick? And, while we're at it, which is which???

    -- TM, who finds that Unix allows you to dodge the sticks, most of the time.

  • Well, the core of the OS runs on the main cpu, the others are only usable by aplications.

    Netware is super super fast, it is an example of care and tuning, and not needing locks because only one cpu runs the kernel (yeah, I know, there are locks for other stuff no doubt).

    The 3.x series could serve a file request in 53 x86 instructions! Top that.

    This is Alan Cox's point that Linux beats Solaris on single CPU machines because it is efficent, but this is reversed on multi processor boxes because Solaris is scalable, taken to it's logical extreme. There is no userland (non ring 0) on a 3.x server, and it cuts performance in half on a 4.x machine if you use it (on Linux, the kernel runs in ring 0, everything else runs ring 3).

    Netware is in many ways an anacronism, file and print, historically a horible aplication server.

    Name the two OSs with no vm and no protected memory: Netware and Macintosh (this is way back when).

    Netware is like Linux using loadlin, except you can quit to dos, or unload it and reclaim the memory (as linux does). Saing it is a dos app is like saying linux is if you use loadlin.
  • Isn't it just a big LDAP server?
  • :) Quite right, fighting FUD with FUD... Microsoft didn't convince me on the BIND issue, or the LDAP implementation, but we'll see. "Standards-compliance" has always been iffy with them, just like NT is "POSIX-compliant".

    Of course, we could apply the same tactics to basic facts, and I'm sure we'd get different responses to them.

    "Did you know that Windows 2000 hasn't been released yet? Even though Microsoft has announced that it is finished working on it and has distributed it to certain major players, it is not publically available yet."

    "Did you know that Netware 5 has been released? Even though Novell can't publicize a paper bag, it is possible to get a copy of Netware 5 now."

    "Did you know that Microsoft traditionally does lousy disk caching anyhow? Defragmenting a drive on a Microsoft Operating System is better done under Linux. (tested with DOSEmu :)"

    "Did you know that the Earth is spiraling into the sun? Even though it's getting there very slowly, it will eventually become uninhabitable."

    Incidentally, if you're running Windows, load up a copy of RegEdit, and change your Windows Tips. Now *that's* fun. "Do not, under any circumstances, eat the yellow snow"...
    ---
    pb Reply or e-mail; don't vaguely moderate [152.7.41.11].
  • Pick up any "DataComm Warehouse" mag or go to there website (www.warehouse.com) or to CDW (www.cdw.com) and you can buy as much NetWare 3 & 4 as you like. Something make me think you didn't try _too_ hard to solve this problem...
  • *shrug* Novell have about one product worth mentioning, and that's NDS, which is actually very good. But other than that, NetWare is nothing more than a file and print server - people often mock Microsoft for running their GUI in kernel mode - NetWare runs entire applications in kernel mode, using NLM. Notice how almost every rebuttal published by Novell involves NDS, and also note that NDS is available for NT. Realistically, unless you're a legacy site, there are few reasons to choose NetWare.
  • I think we need to have more negative moderation to account for crap like this. It would be occasionally amusing if they weren't serious.
  • I, personally, have no problems with it being loaded on top of DOS.

    actually... dos gets kicked out before novell gets started. but i agree with the fact that you can change a driver and replace a driver through dos. one of my biggest pet peeves with windows nt is that there is no command line accessible system configuration. if a driver gets caput and you can't get into the system, you have to use the rescue disk and still its 20 minutes until you see the light of day... if you do see it that is.

    "The lie, Mr. Mulder, is most convincingly hidden between two truths."

  • "All our sysops dont know fuck about novell because they have been using MacOS all along..."

    First, if all of their skills are in MacOS, then why are they your sysops? I think that they should rather be your advertisers or graphic designers or one of those other Mac-friendly type jobs.

    Second, if the sysops don't know how to use the OS, then it makes more sense to train them how to use the current OS then to license yet another OS which they don't know how to use.

    Third, NT is not easy to use. If it were, then there would not be so many people complaining about it. I admit that it looks better than Novell, but that does not make it easier to use. That is one of the biggest problems with point-and-drool people: they equate "more attractive" with "easier to use."

    And I'm hardly a Novell advocate. I just think NT is a big pile of dog shit and I can't believe so many people have been suckered into paying money for it. I recently had to install some software on some NT machines. I was amazed at how many reboots I had to do, how it asked me, "You should exit all other Windows applications" (why?), how slow it was, how un-intuitive setting up devices and the network was, and how single-user-minded it was. I really wish that ISS would port its software to a real operating system.
  • >The above block of text could go into Data
    >Processing dictionaries as a textbook example
    >of FUD.


    But on slashdot it'll go up to +5 as a textbook example of MS-bashing
  • What's so new about this in reality? Companies have always fought FUD about their products with FUD about their competitors products. Is this really that much of a shock? Look at all those little surveys/studies that the automakers have commissioned. Most of them don't matter much in the overall performance you are going to get out of the car but yet they throw them out there over and over again.

    I don't think anyone at Microsoft will be suprised at having FUD thrown at them. Just like other people are not surprised at Microsoft throwing it at them ALL THE TIME. Remember Sun maintains (or did I dunno if they stopped) a whole website soley dedicated to attacking NT for EVERY role. This isn't something new for MS. They've had more FUD thrown at them in the last 3 months regarding how the company was going to be broken up than most companies get in a year. It's just a different kind of FUD. (FUD comes in all shapes and sizes)

    It can be REALLY fun to watch though. Particullarly when someone REALLY screws up.

    I love marketers sometimes. :-)
  • I know what you mean. Netware's so clunky. It's DOS on wheels.

    In the words of one Lt.Cdr. Montgomery Scott:
    "...and if my grandmother had wheels she'd be a wagon"


    Consciousness is not what it thinks it is
    Thought exists only as an abstraction
  • It was (until recently) loaded on top of DOS. It still only has a DOS-like shell with no decent text processing utilities. And until Netware 5, it used an outmoded proprietary network protocol. I don't know much about the latest version, but it still looks like something that came out of the ark. I suppose if you view it purely as an application server platform (rather than as a general purpose OS) it does its job well. But I prefer more flexibility and adherence to open standards than Netware has to offer.

    Consciousness is not what it thinks it is
    Thought exists only as an abstraction
  • Please moderate that up?
  • simply because NT can't handle the load of 25 users

    ??? thats amazing.. I do not advocate NT but if you are having problems like that then it sounds to me its operator error more than OS error.
  • While they battle it out, Linux, *BSD and other open source programs will be improving at a faster rate than either of those two could hope to achieve.

    Finkployd


    Bill Gates: "Innovation"
  • Well, they are the best references, but they really don't help with step by step procedures or things like that.
    But it you need to know everything you can do with a grep command, they are easier to folow then the man page.


    Bill Gates: "Innovation"
  • by Anonymous Coward
    actually netware 4.11 does work with up to 4 processors. as the guys at novell will tell you netware 5.x and above works with 4 processors and does it very well. one key is that novell does not typicly *need* more than one processor unlike most any NT box which really could use 2 processors and 512mb or ram to boot. most of the complaints i've heard about netware is that it has a "DOS like interface on the server". hmm well that server is supposed to run and by god it does. why put a user on the server (as i have seen with NT as it looks just like any other box on someones desk.) i have seen uptimes of 2 years on netware boxes. but whocares. uptimes don't mean it's perfect, just that it's not annoying enough to fix. i support novell and unix boxes and my company supports NT as well. the NT SE's are constantly having to fix and work on the reliabilty of the NT boxes. our novell accounts ask why we come by as they don't have problems. (yes some do have problems but so does any network in that is in constant flux.) NT, Novell, *NIX all have there places and no one is better in *ALL* areas than the others but as a file and print server I have not seen anything work better than Novell.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    One very solid point in the Novell page: Lotsa businesses that plan to change over to Windoze 2000 will be waiting at least a year before taking the plunge. That's a *very* good idea: Let others pay technical staff to read bug tracking literature and apply functional and security patches on a week to week basis, until a more stable build comes out. That's what I would be pushing for, with a strictly cost-based argument, if my management insisted on getting Win2K.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I know this is a bit offtopic but anyways...

    My employer made the uninformed decision to "upgrade" all of our servers (both Netware 4.11 and Solaris 2.5.1 as well as an older Onyx system) to Win2K when it becomes available. I'm on the system admin team, and I'm seriously thinking of leaving. Another note about the management there is that they're total assholes... When we decommissioned a SPARCserver 690MP (4x180MHz, 512MB RAM) and two SPARCstation 10s they fucking *SMASHED* it up and basically trashed pretty much everything internally. The SIMMs were broken, CPUs crushed, HDs smashed (4x18GB diff SCSI in the 690... grrr)! They claim they do this because of high school kids digging in the trash, what a load of BS. This company sucks. I'm sure the same fate will happen to the other stuff when it goes...
    RANT OFF
  • by Anonymous Coward
    If you don't use a directory service, you'll never know what it is. With NDS, I can move people from Sales in NY to Sales in CA with a drag and drop. So when they arrive in CA on Monday morning, their ID is the same and their password is the same and all of their files are waiting for them. They grab a local PC and login (as I said, same name, same password) and they're busy making money again. Try that with any other login scheme. And with Zen, I can push the apps they need to their PC. It will take longer to login the first time, but they will have EXACTLY what they had in NY. Now, security, in the *nix world we have USER, GROUP and WORLD. Under NDS, you can have as many groups with permissions to your directory as you want. And they can all have different rights. And the rights are more granular. Now, extend those rights to people and departments and geographical locations. I can give someone in NY the rights to change NY employee's passwords so I won't be woken up 3 hours early when they get to work. But this guy might have no other rights to add or delete users or their files. But I can give someone in Sales the rights to add/delete salespeople. But no rights to change passwords. That means that the ENTIRE tree can be managed by ME but each location will be managed locally and those people can ONLY manage their location. That way, if Joe in NY is killed by a cab, I can handle his job from my office in CA until we get a replacement. And if I'm killed in an earthquake, each location can handle itself until I'm replaced. I can give your boss full rights to your files and I can give his boss full rights to his files. But HIS boss will not have any rights to YOUR files. That way your boss can monitor your work and his boss can monitor his work but his boss has to go through him to get to your work. Or however I want to set it up.
  • The problem will be that the executives will read how "...ActiveDirectory is just like NDS..." on their airline magazines and then come down and tell the computer people to dump Novell since Microsoft can give them the same thing. It took a year for NDS to get stable enough to use (I know - we tried), and I'd expect no less for ActiveDirectory. But, try explaining that to management.


    ...phil
  • The SIMMs were broken, CPUs crushed, HDs smashed (4x18GB diff SCSI in the 690... grrr)!

    I could actually understand smashing the drives. They could have been worried that data on them might have gotten out of the control of the company. The best way to avoid that would be to destroy the drives.

    As far as destroying the machine is concerned, there are often tax ramifications to desposing hardware. If you're getting rid of it, and you've depreciated it completely, you cannot have somebody else pick it up and thereby demonstrate that it still has 'value'. That would mean that the company wrote off more $$$ than they were legally allowed to, thereby exposing themselves to a tax lawsuit. The response in cases like that is often to physically destroy the equipment before it hits the dumpster.


    ...phil

  • I don't know what world you're living in, but Netware is VERY relevant. Novell just hasn't been doing much marketing against the Microsoft juggernaut.

    Just out of curiosity, what do you think of AS/400s?


    ...phil

  • Sales of Novell's NOS have doubled over the past 12 months.

    Both users are very happy.

  • The page quotes zdnet as follows:
    "We've known for the last year that corporate America is taking a wait-and-see attitude towards Windows 2000, but the fact that well over half have no plans for adopting Windows 2000 until 2001 or later and that a large percent of users plan never to migrate starts to look like a sea change."

    This industry, for all it's speed, has no memory of history. I remember the exact same type logic for NT4's release. And look what happened.

    The reason that win2k will beat out Novell for the marketing is that new computers will come shipped with it. You won't be seeing dell having a check box for 'pre-install Novell 5'. You will see one for Win2k. IIRC, you can see it now, for a BETA! Microsoft will win this war with novell due to it's control of the OEM's. And novell doesn't have the popularity to force OEM's to change, like they did for linux.

    In 1 year, or more likly 4 months, you won't be able to buy a computer with NT4 on it. Then companies will either have to upgrade everyone to maintain compatability, or downgrade the new boxes. For workstations, people won't like getting a 'downgraded' box, and will complain, and eventually get win2k.

    Unfortunatly, it's not about supperior products.
  • They DID have a patchkit. It was about 31 NLM replacements and a patch for SERVER.EXE. I know because I installed it on a server.

    BTW - Novell 3.2 was basicly 3.12 with Y2K patches.
  • I personally think that Novell seriously blew it by only NOW announcing their campaign against Windows 2000 Server editions.

    Mostly because Novell should have been doing this like early 1999 when NetWare 5.0 first came out. Instead, Novell gave time for Microsoft to rev up their Windows 2000 PR bandwagon, and NetWare 5.0 got ignored by way too many IT managers as a result.

    Also, don't forget that Novell is also getting punted all over the place by the rapid rise in Linux for use in departmental servers. Mostly because Linux costs a tiny fraction of what NetWare 5.x costs to purchase, especially for medium to large workgroups. In my personal opinion, the success of Linux servers has hurt Novell far more than Microsoft, especially since Linux has Samba, which allows easy integration to workstations running Windows 95/98 and NT 4.0 Workstation from any Linux server machine.
  • No problem. Your post was highly informative, mine wasn't...for obvious reasons. But I'd still contend that Novell missed the boat. It still looks clunky because it's not Unix and it's not Windows. Is there even room for another mass-market server platform these days?

    The world has moved on; computing is now a much bigger arena than it was in Netware's day, and a large proportion of our computing infrastructure now depends upon services originating from Unix. With Netware 5 they've tried to drag the product into the internet age (like so many other proprietary platform vendors) by adding TCP/IP and making it into a web server platform. You have indicated some scepticism about the latter. I agree, Netware is unlikely to make it as a web server platform because it has no pedigree as such and there is strong competition in the market already.

    But then, if Netware is destined to be remain purely as a file-and-print server then who needs it? This is the basis of my complaint that it's not a general purpose OS. Almost all network installations these days require more than just file and print services. All existing requirements can be met with either Unix or NT or a combination of both. Introducing a third platform means requiring sysadmin skills etc. for it in adddition to the other two. It's hard to imagine that any incremental benefit would outweigh the additional cost of network complexity.

    Consciousness is not what it thinks it is
    Thought exists only as an abstraction
  • Actually I have had good experiences with Groupwise for email & Border Manager for internet access.

    That's funny, because I've had experience with those too and I think they suck. Groupwise is about as reliable as MS Exchange, i.e. not very reliable at all. I even had my whole account mysteriously disappear forever one time. Border Manager (because it is designed for dummies to use) is very easy to misconfigure. Ever find yourself behind a firewall which blocks out far more than is necessary - because the sysadmin doesn't know *anything* about the internet? These things should not be made *too* simple to use because then you have simple people using them.

    Consciousness is not what it thinks it is
    Thought exists only as an abstraction
  • I think they went with FAT 16 because all of the operating systems support it.

    That would be a completely bogus reason to cripple the more capable systems. After all, the file system speed does contribute to the overall system speed in a "real world" deployment.
    IMHO, using FAT16 on the NT and 2K boxes means this isn't anything like a real world test. Yet another demonstration of MS incompetence.


    Consciousness is not what it thinks it is
    Thought exists only as an abstraction
  • And you can't even get support unless you're running a certain distro

    I've gone from complete newbie, to paid Linux admin without ever paying money for support. All along the way I had this nifty thing called the Internet to help me. That's right, newsgroups, how-tos, IRC, user groups, they all helped me learn, or fix any problems I ran into. The best part, they didn;t charge me. Wierd huh?

    Homer Simpson: "They have the Internet on computers now!"

    Finkployd


    Bill Gates: "Innovation"
  • What planet are you from? Novell Netware is everywhere. It doesn't need DOS to run; it's a Network Operating System. It can do file and print services, which is what it's best at. It's also capable of doing database and application services through additional software called modules (which are basically like services), but these were marginalized in the market due to their proprietary nature. NT is really better for running application services (e.g. SQL Server), and much more easily and flexibly administered. Novell always held the lead for mission-critical data centers, though, with SMP, fault tolerance, RAID, et cetera, all before MS released the first NT.

    There are many, many corporate sites who run Novell Netware for file servers, possibly also for print servers, and run NT for domain and profile administration and application servers. But NT tends to make inroads like this and then stop, partly because the MIS departments are heavy with Novell-certified professionals who've used Netware for 15-odd years.

    Part of the Win2000 bid by MS is to finally replace the remaining Novell servers in these organizations.
    ----
  • it always seemed that everything they did was designed to make it harder for NetWare servers to operate with Windows workstations properly and I admire Novell for overcomming all the burdens that M$ laid in their path. As far as I remember Novell was silent about these things, but all the admin could experience them heavily

    I absolutely agree. One of the most frustrating things is that WinNT's command line cannot run Novell command-line utilities. Of coruse, MS would innocently shake their heads and say the utils were written for DOS and CMD.EXE is not DOS -- but at the same time they would tout NT as a respectable partner in Novell-based networks. Very frustrating; you were limited to using the GUI tools (point click ad infinitum) or keeping an extra workstation around to run the command-line stuff.

    (Why the hell couldn't MS write a REAL dos emulator for NT? It wasn't just Novell that would benefit. Morons.)

    Essentially, Microsoft seemed to have a strategy of getting NT into an organization (e.g. as a SQL server), in effect touting the benefits of a mixed organization, then to turn around tout an all-MS environment as superior to a mixed one. They certainly didn't bend over backwards to make them play nicely together.
    ----
  • My employer made the uninformed decision to "upgrade" all of our servers (both Netware 4.11 and Solaris 2.5.1 as well as an older Onyx system) to Win2K when it becomes available. I'm on the system admin team, and I'm seriously thinking of leaving.

    Well, if you want to continue in the Netware or Solaris worlds, you'd better leave. Win2000 isn't that bad, though. (It doesn't sound like you have enough experience to say that they're "uninformed".)

    Another note about the management there is that they're total assholes... When we decommissioned a SPARCserver 690MP (4x180MHz, 512MB RAM) and two SPARCstation 10s they fucking *SMASHED* it up

    The other poster is correct: this is done for compliance with tax write-off rules. If it's documented as completely destroyed, they can write off the full remaining value. Granted, few companies do this, but I was at a place that upgraded everyone to 14" color monitors (from 12" amber monitors; this was a while ago), and even though the old monitors worked perfectly fine, we were instructed to use a hammer to smash all the screens.
    ----
  • Another point I'd like to make about Netware is while it is a superior product compared to NT the problem is that there aren't enough people who really know their way around Netware compared to those that do NT. That's going to really hamper Netware. They should do something like Sun and SCO do and sell cheap media kits/licenses. The more people that know Netware, the more likely it is going to be deployed in a commercial setting. I think this would be more sucessful in combatting M$ than just bitching and whining.

    They do. There are books on Netware admin [novell.com] which come with licence-restricted copies of Netware 5.

  • My roommate installed Win2K after showing up to an M$ "employment information session" that they sponsored at our CS dept. He got a free Win2K disk, installed, and a week later, was running Win98 again. The Win2K disk is now a beer coaster, and we try not to use it. In the words of a friend, "I don't think even Microsoft could cause a beer to crash... but I'm not chancing it."

    I have no experience with Novell, except that our school uses it (with Groupwise) to run many parts of the network, and a fault in Groupwise caused a geometrically increasing number of "bounced" e-mails which brought our network to its knees faster than a freshman with Napster.

    My roommate runs a Mandrake box; it's got an uptime of two years and a Matrix screen saver.

    I don't know much, but I think a third party evaluation would do us a lot of good.
  • A directory service is very similar to NIS+ in the Unix world. It creates a central place for managing all user accounts.

    Though NDS is so far ahead of where NIS could ever be, specifically with regards to replacting the data, and sharing/exporting it into other formats such as LDAP.

    Its also important to mention that unlike Active Directory, NDS is *NOT* platform centric, it can operate perfectly fine on a network without any netware boxes.

    For example I operate a small e-commerce firm we have 3 Sun E250's and about 100 Linux boxes which run on Compaq proliants, we have *no* netware servers. But when I delete a user he disappears from all the systems, when I add a user I get to pick which groups (systems) he has access to. When he changes his password, the password changes on all the systems. Its a nice pretty java interface to manage the whole thing, its a bit slow under Linux but it runs well under CDE.

    NDS links into the PAM (Password Authentication Module) and really takes the headaches out of syncronizing passwords, etc.

    Right now we're just bringing up our Intranet webserver so all .htaccess logins are also authenicated against NDS. I hate having 26 different passwords on different systems. Did I mention NDS can also manage how many systems a person can be logged into?

    I know your wondering what happens if NDS goes down? (to be totally honest I have no clue, since it hasn't happened yet) but its supposed to read the local password file, we removed the root user and gave another "secret" user a root login, just enough access so I could reclaim the box if necessary, but NDS has been extremely reliable for us!

    I think we might have had more issues if we ran NDS on Netware since I think Netware is a poor excuse for an operating system. We're playing with the idea of running Netware for the marketing people so we can use ZenWorks to manage their workstations, Novell ZenWorks rocks, but it requires Netware.
    FYI: The linux verion of NDS isn't out yet, but i'm running the beta and it seems fine.

  • What difference does it make if Novell gets some market share? Novell and MS are both coporations devoted to closed-source software. Either of them would crush you and your puny free operating system if they could.

    If NetWare 5 beats Win2k, whose to say that Novell won't go after Linux/BSD next?

    ~~~~~~~~~
    auntfloyd
  • I stand corrected.
  • NT doesn't have a command.com, it has a cmd.exe
  • Umm... if you want to progress your carreer in the sysadmin field, and you are in a company where management just 'decides' that everything should be W2k for no reason.. get out.
  • I wish I had a fscking choice!
    The company I work for (a major Cable/Communications company employing nearly 20,000 people) is preparing to "upgrade" every single computer to Win 2000 and Office 2000. It makes me physically ill to even think about it. Microsoft's reps are pushing it to the hilt, too. Offering any discount necessary to "lock in" all of us to Win2000.
    Unfortunately, I am in no position to push for an Open Source alternative to this mess. :(
  • It not only uses DOS as a bootloader, it uses it all the way. And not only that, it _needs_ dos 6.

    Any newer version of dos, (eg from win95), will load netware, but causes major problems in any Novell server 3/4/5.



    ----------------------------------------------
  • Um... Excuse me... have you looked at Dell lately? You can order any one of their servers with Novell 5 pre-installed.
  • REMOVE DOS is one of the Novell Server commands. When memory was scarce it was used to free up memory for cache buffers. Nowadays it is sometimes used by a technician who wants to reboot the server. If you DOWN the server and EXIT, you will be returned to DOS. If you REMOVE DOS first, the machine reboots when you exit Novell.
  • Microsoft has to do the big advertising blitz precisely because Windows is an established product.

    Businesses will not undertake an upgrade lightly - the cost per system can easily hit several kilobucks after you include the Win2k upgrade license, the third party product upgrades (for products that break under W2K), the IT staff to install the software, the staff to retrain employees, the lost productivity of employees in training classes and for the next N days, etc. Few shops will pay less than $1000/system to upgrade, some might pay upwards of $5000/system.

    These upgrades tend to be "all-or-nothing" affairs. While you could run one group under NT4 and another group under W2K, that involves a duplication of effort that might be more costly than simply pushing everything over to the new OS. Again, that is a strong disincentive to upgrading quickly, esp. with Microsoft's hard-earned reputation for poor quality initial releases. Few IT managers will rush to upgrade today... and twice again in the next six months as service packs are released.

    So the target audience of W2K knows that the cost of switching is significant - and the cost of the software license is only a small part of the total. They have to be convinced that the cost is worth it - and that's where the advertising blitz comes in.

    As a secondary effect, don't forget that some managers will be comparing the cost of upgrading from NT4 to W2K (esp. if it requires a major hardware upgrade) to the cost of switching from NT4 to Linux. I'm sure a lot of the marketing will focus on how much is the same (low cost of transfer), not how much is different (so the cost of conversion to Netware or Linux is comparable to the cost of conversion to Win2K).

  • True Story.
    I had a job as a network engineer once in a hospital. There was a netware server (V3.5) that had 200+ users on it and it also managed a bunch of printers. One day I had to add another hard drive to it because the old one was running out of space. The entire operation took about a half hour but the actual donwtime was more like 15 minutes. That was the only downtime for that server in two years. Here is the kicker.
    It was a 486 with 16 megs of ram (an IBM using Micro channel!).
  • Was that a joke? In the past, Linux was very inferior. Today it is not. Both work particularly well in many niches.

    Linux is making much more progress in terms of enterprise viability (such as database and complex application servers). As for one processor desktop, I would say that both are perfectly good and it just depends on your personal preference. Jump to multiprocessor systems and Linux has a pretty good advantage (though, you may want to jump to SCO, Solaris or win2k -- since if you're spending a lot for the machine, a 1500+ dollar license isn't much of a problem).

    Both are very good systems. Use whichever is best for your application.

    Don't take this post as completely pro linux. I use FreeBSD on web servers, firewalls, and mid range application servers (3-5 server clusters). Java limitations in FreeBSD are my primary cause for jumping to linux for some of my new work.

    There is no denying that Linux has much more support. It also has a development accelerator that is moving faster than FreeBSD (especially in respect to high end enterprise application).
  • "MORE stable than our Linux boxes ont he same hardware"

    Care to provide some examples? It may in fact be true, but no one is going to believe baseless claims unless you at least back them up.
  • Please tell us where the beta for NDS for Linux is. I work in a Novell shop and have several Linux servers that I'd love to do NDS sync on.
  • I think it's time for a reality check. Sure, everyone and their mother is talking smack about W2K. Sure, I see online publications everyday saying how companies "are not planning to upgrade to W2K until 2001" or "are taking a wait-and-see approach." But let me give you a real world example of how this is all hot air.

    A few months ago, I tried W2K, RC2 I beleive it was, at work. So I called my bosses and IT managers and they looked at it, and said it was all right, but, to paraphrase, "we cannot justify upgrading to it, because there is no reason to." Ie, if it ain't broke (our NT4 network) don't fix it. Fast forward 2 months, and those same bosses come up to me and say "good news, we're gonna be ordering a new W2K server soon." WTF happened?! I'll tell you what happened, Hype. Microsoft sells one thing and one thing only, and that is the _word_ "Microsoft." They make point-and-click admin's like my bosses (and every other MCSE, NT admin, etc) beleive with all their heart (and purchasing buck) that MS is the only game in town, and one should get all their newest stuff ASAP.

    I firmly beleive that's what will happend. Online publications be damned, opinions be damned, caution be damned, W2K is gonna sell like hotcakes. Novell FUD? Please... There's only one FUD source anyone listens to.

  • "SPARCserver 690MP (4x180MHz, 512MB RAM) and two SPARCstation 10s...4x18GB diff SCSI in the 690...They claim they do this because of high school kids digging in the trash, what a load of BS."

    Exactly. If I knew that was in the trash, I wouldn't hire any shifty highschool kids -- I'd jump in myself! New firewall, two new workstations, and more pr0n storeage.. yeeeehhhaaaaw!!!!
    ---
  • I do the same thing on my company's NT boxes; I make several 2GB FAT16 drives. Users whine because there are so many drive letters but tough. Not only can you copy files off in an emergency, but if your FAT gets booglarized you can sometimes fix it in place with a little judicious use of a disk editor. (I've had to do this a few times, earning immense respect for my amazing voodoo system-fixing abilities at the office.) I suppose if NTFS were documented then you could do something similar with a damaged NTFS partition, but as we all know the NTFS format is a deep dark secret that you, the lowly mudcrawling customer, are not allowed to know. Also if you're crazy enough to have Win9x as an boot-up alternative, you can access those same FAT16 partitions.

    But if you need to get files off an NTFS partition, go look on a search engine and check out a product called NTFSDOS. It was made by a company called (if I remember correctly) Winternals and it used to be free a couple years ago. NTFSDOS is an MS-DOS driver that mounts all the NTFS partitions it can find as read-only. It's small enough that you can fit it on a bootable floppy. It doesn't support NT user permissions, all files are visible and copyable, so it's the mother of all security holes, but if an unauthorized user can get physical access to your server you've got worse security problems than NTFSDOS anyway (think "a disgruntled unauthorized user carrying a wood axe"). At any rate, when your NT system goes belly-up and you want to copy off the files trapped in an NTFS partition, NTFSDOS can save the day for you.

    Winternals also had some utilities with which you could fix an NT system that would blue-screen on startup. Those weren't free but they weren't unreasonably priced either. Another cheap repair I've done on NT systems which blue-screened before they'd boot is to look at the list of drivers on the blue screen, then boot up in DOS and rename all the drivers that don't seem absolutely necessary. You get a load of error messages because NT can no longer find drivers it is trying to load, but sometimes you can get the system to boot and then maybe you can undo whatever awful thing you did (typically installing a new program) that screwed up your NT box so bad.

    Yours WDK - WKiernan@concentric.net

  • 60 people for a marketing team for a company the size of Novell is a joke. What is their yearly gross revenue? I worked at an AIR CONDITIONING company which had a yearly gross of $50 mil or so that had 5 marketing people (and I considered that small). I know people here think marketing is a joke, but COME ON. The best product in the world is useless if nobody ever figures out it's the best product.
  • They were never entirely killed off. They released Novel 5 a while back.
  • Gartner Group has recommended to several state governments to unite all their agencies under NDS and to avoid Win2K until 2001 or 2002. I'd like to be able to point you to the reports, but you must subscribe and pay thousands to be able to read them...
  • I think this just shows you how much the computer industry has changed. In the '80s t was all about who had the better technology. The company who spent more money on R&D would win customers. Now today it seems that companies are worrying more about politics than developing actual companies.

    Oh, yeah right. DEC had demonstrably better products than Sun did in the 1980's, for example, but Sun won out. Handily. And you know why? Because nothing has changed. Sun was better at producing FUD than making computers, and DEC had very poor marketing but top notch engineering. Sun published all sorts of FUD which was just plain wrong like "The Sun 3/60 is ten times as fast as the MicroVAX II". Yeah. FUD has been going on since the beginning of the industry - this is nothing new. It's actually rather tame now compared to what has happened in the past.

  • This isn't unprecedented or uncalled-for by any means. Microsoft struck first - with their "informative" article entitled "Windows 2000 Server: A Prime Choice over Novell's Netware 5.0", similar to their "Linux Myths" article and (my favorite) "How to remove Linux from your computer and install NT".

    Novell is responding just like the Open source community did to the "Linux Myths" article. What are they supposed to do? Stay quiet and take it like a man? Of course, this just increases the FUD-to signal ratio.

    What kind of reply would anyone here like to have seen?
  • by MrHat ( 102062 )
    Or, in South Park-speak:


    [A commercial is playing]
    Guy: What is the future of America? Is it the money we make?

    [A dollar flies by the screen]
    Guy: The quests we conquer

    [Shot of Neil Armstrong on the moon flies by]
    Guy: No. It's the children.

    [Shows a pic of the five boys]
    Guy: So what do the children have to say about Microsoft?

    [Kyle's head flies by]
    Kyle: I don't like big corporations.

    [Then Stan]
    Stan: I like small businesses.

    [Then Cartman]
    Cartman: I believe in the family owned enterprise.

    [Kenny]
    Kenny: To get back to the home owned enterprise.

    [And finally Tweek]
    Tweek: Ah!

    Guy: It's time to stop large corporations. Prop Ten is about children. Vote yes on Prop Ten or else you hate children. You don't hate children, do you? Remember, keep American business small or else.

    [Show a pic of all five boys' heads as burnt skulls with hats]

    Guy: Paid for by Novell and citizens for a fair and equal way to get Microsoft kicked out of town forever.
  • Novell isn't attacking Microsoft, they're just pointing out that Microsoft gives the impression that W2K Pro and Server NEED each other AND Active Directory. They then offer, in shameless self-promotion, their own little implementation that has been used with NT 4 Workstation and Server. They're just reminding people that they have alternatives other than Micro$oft. The claims of being better just come with the self-promotion. What good is offering alternatives if there aren't any that can rival what is being pushed as a necessity?

  • I, personally, have no problems with it being loaded on top of DOS. Unlike NT, I can EASILY bring up a Netware server that I installed an incorrect driver on. If it's a disk controller driver, I simply replace it in the C:\NWSERVER directory, and run SERVER.EXE. If it's not, I can start SERVER.EXE -na -ns and skip it's auto startup scripts. It's a very managable system.

    When the same sort of thing happens on NT, you might as well format, since it's probably impossible to figure out what went wrong on it. Rescue disks are all but worthless. Windows2000 is a LITTLE better, but not much. There is a "troubleshooting" mode, but unless the system is mostly working, it probably won't help.

    And for user administration, I think Netware beats just about everything out there, especially for a GUI. All information about any given user/print queue/volume/server is available through ONE tool -- nwadmin. Moving a user from one organizational unit to another instantly gives them access to all resources assigned to that OU by the administrator. You can set up logically constructed trees to organise all users and departments within the company. NT (even with Active Directory) and most unixes simply can't compare to this.

    Don't forget that, from an archetural stand-point, Linux's design is pretty dated too -- monolithic kernel and all. But if it works, it works. At work, the netware 4.11 server we use often lasts a hundred days or so between hardware failures [I really DO need to fix that soon, especially since the Adaptec RAID controller just decided to eat the entire array for no good reason].

  • high prices, expensive support, hard to use, all those things become small near the real reason of purchasing Netware to be your server - Security. MS is known to have security flaws in their programs, notablly their OS's windows 95 and 98. IMO, i would prefer Netware, and to gurantee that i have a working perfectly network, and not to be in doubt with microsoft products, which i said before are weak when it comes to security. besides, also if it's hard to use, i dont go pissed off that i can't ride a Rols Roys, wake up the next day and drive a bug.
  • They were basically creating products to complement the stuff from Microsoft. But Microsoft expanding their productline and functionality in the direction of whatever Novell made to enhance the platform was inevitable. Novell has actually been a great help to Microsoft, pointing out were their products lacked. And, in a way, steering towards their own demise.
  • Don't we?

    The 'MS' camp can't be, so it SHOULD be Novell. As a microsoftie (yeah flame me, I don't care) I laugh about the 'case studies' MS puts up to proof another product is bad/wrong/whatever. Whoever goes for that crap is truely in the wrong profession. Same goes for the other company's marketing departments and their mudthrowing 'Case Studies' about the products of the competition. You fall for those too?

    I hope not :)

    For the people who already know what's right and what's wrong: beware what you believe. Think who spread the texts you think is right. Is it the company or is it the techteam working on the product?

    About the NDS vs AD debate. NDS is already out there for some time now. It wasn't up to par when it saw it's first light, it seems to be usable very well in lots of environments. So people get used to it, know it's strengths etc. AD on the otherhand isn't even out there. It's not even released. No-ONE has seen it. Only selected testers who got RC3 (and I don't think a lot of them are reading /. all day ;)). The rest of you is making his judgement on the quality of AD on what's written in the press, and especially on sites with doubtable reputations like ZDnet.

    Novell fights for every percent marketshare they can get. It's their right. For people who have to use products from both companies, MS or Novell, it's better to test out what's there, and judge for ourselves.

    And that is only possible AFTER Feb. 17.
    Or did you all do excessive tests with AD on a serverfarm full with win2K server machines and numerous clients and also the same test with NDS?

    I guess so...
  • I think this just shows you how much the computer industry has changed. In the '80s t was all about who had the better technology. The company who spent more money on R&D would win customers. Now today it seems that companies are worrying more about politics than developing actual companies. MS launching a huge marketing blitz is just an exmaple of how the market changed. If Win2k was so good would MS really need that big of a campaign? They are all ready a well established brand! Linux is trying to put real sofftware developement back into the industry but will it ever revert back? Only time will tell.
  • But it seems to me that Microsoft is practicing FUD against NDS and Novell is giving detail examples of the problems with Active Directory. These are two different things entirely and I auplaud Novell for their restraint.

    One of the bigest issues I have with AD is that it only runs on W2K. It isn't even backwards compatible to Windows 98/95 or even Windows 3.1 which a lot of businesses are still using. And the fact that they took a thing like kerberos and perverted it to be proprietary and incompatible with the standard kerberos is beyond belief. "Embrace and Extend" anyone?

    Novell works and plays well with others. Novell supplies clients to work with nearly every OS so that you can use their servers or not and NDS is seperate from their servers. You can run NDS on a network without _any_ Novell servers.

    All in all I think that Novell is playing very fair against an unscrupulous opponent.
  • Well, it's good to see that EVERYONE on the planet is now berating Win2k. Still, I'm going to upgrade, if only to get the stinking pile of feces called NT 4.0 off of my system. My job on the other hand... We're waiting and seeing (which is really bad, since our university had a contract where we can get it ultra-cheap.) Maybe this FUD will go a little way to getting a *nix server running... Ah well, I can dream.
  • by Shadok8 ( 58859 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @02:42PM (#1347434)
    Yes, it does. Usually it has to be manually enabled - but then there are many, many settings in NT that require registry changes.

    Microsoft makes a program called DMACHECK to enable DMA under NT4 - the program has been around since 1996. The MS DMACHECK utility sets NT to use DMA if it detects it. The caveat is that sometimes the NT IDE drivers not detect that DMA mode can be used. The best thing to do is go into the registry and hard code your system for DMA drive access. It is a single registry change that alters how the IDE driver works.

    If I remember correctly, DMA support began in SP4. Prior to MS adding support to the OS, Intel offered a bus mastering IDE driver for PIIX chipset motherboards.

    It makes a huge difference in benchmarks, but as Microsoft continues to prove to the world: benchmarks rarely tell a true story. More importantly it makes a very significant, very noticeable improvement for real world usage.

    You can get the details here:
    http://www.arstechnica.com/tweak/nt/udma.html
  • I have submitted an article about Novell opening the source of some LDAP developement tool. Slashdot never published it. But they publish this article aobut Novell countering MS FUD.

    Fine with me, but what Novell stated is truth, not FUD. (there IS a defference)




  • by aralin ( 107264 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @10:06AM (#1347436)
    I'm doing LAN admin for over 6 years now on a large net with Netware servers and M$ Workstations and I have to say that since I started I always had problems with Microsoft solutions, because it always seemed that everything they did was designed to make it harder for NetWare servers to operate with Windows workstations properly and I admire Novell for overcomming all the burdens that M$ laid in their path. As far as I remember Novell was silent about these things, but all the admin could experience them heavily.

    But it was worth it because its clear to all that NetWare is and always was a best solution for a file server. If I would be forced to change to M$ servers, I would go and find myself another job.

    And this blatant lie about Novell NetWare not mirroring disks contrary to W2k and these other lies about their file-server solutions is so terrible that I really don't wonder to Novell to go in counterattack.

    And you can see that Novell doesn't need to lie like Microsoft does, only when they will state and comment on their pages what Microsoft admits himself, they will make a set of horror stories about W2k

  • by fluxrad ( 125130 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @08:26AM (#1347437) Homepage
    You mean to tell me this is the first time anyone has ever trash-talked M$. The news is that it's Novell, a "heavy" hitter, but this is politics as usual for these guys.

    Someone show me a company that doesn't spread FUD about others in its industry - now that's what I call news.

    -flux=rad
  • by The_miffo ( 141871 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @01:51PM (#1347438)
    It can be called outright FUD cause they point out even the adresses where Microsofts own papers state the same things. What they do is to point out where the problems are and how AD differs from NDS so that people wont see them as real competitors. All stated about AD is true, they havent been forced to make things up cause the problems are there to point at. Remember that NDS to had some problems in the beginning(but NDS was in fact much more advanced than AD in the beginning to). Also have in mind that Novell probably has more information than most people about AD since they have both clients and NDS for W2000 servers ready. Novell has tried really hard to play fair with microsoft but after the MS FUD about Novells products they probably got real fed up and starts to get back.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 22, 2000 @08:23AM (#1347439)
    Um..... it's a web page.

    Ooooo. A web page. BE AFRAID, MICROSOFT.

    This is a "campaign"?
  • by sjames ( 1099 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @09:09AM (#1347440) Homepage Journal

    If MS's product crashes it, it is truly ms's fault!

    I disagree. If MS's product fails to interoperate with BIND, it's MS's fault. BIND dumping core is a problem with bind. Software should NEVER dump core no matter what kind of garbage input you give them. In daemons, dumping core is especially bad. Consider a trivial DOS attack

  • by Zoltar ( 24850 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @08:43AM (#1347441)
    There is an interesting article in this weeks "PC Week" which talks about the general failure of Novel to capitalize on the lateness of Win2K. The article claims that not only did Novel not gain any marketshare during the delay, but they actually lost marketshare because of Linux.

    Buuuuut...the best part of the article states that Novel actually fired "the entire 60-employee marketing staff" Can you say "major image problem?" When I read that I wasn't sure what shocked me the most... that fact that they fired the entire staff...or the fact that they actually had 60 people for marketing... sheesh

    When it comes to marketshare it's sad but true that the best technology doesn't mean a thing if you can't crank up a spiffy marketing machine.

    -disclaimer- I'm not stating that Novel has the best technology in the above sentence... I'm making a general statement. My knoweledge of networking software leaves much to be desired :)
  • Well, in the Unix world, you could say NDS is a big LDAP server. But it's not.

    NDS is a incredibly well-designed, stable, reliable directory service. You can store just about anything in a directory service. With NDS, we have network users, groups, servers, volumes, applications (distributed with ZEN to our desktops.) and configuration info for various programs. You can access the directory with NCP calls with Novell clients, or now with LDAP, both pretty efficiently. There have been some DS bugs, like there are in anything, but we've been running the same DS tree for 5 years without having to restore the entire system, or even any part of the tree, from a backup. Mind you, in that time we've added or replaced every server originally in the tree, and at no time was the tree itself unavailable.

    In many ways, there's no analog in the Unix world to what you can do with NDS. It's kinda like NIS or NIS+, but much more refined. I get sick and tired about hearing how people do password and account synchronization between Unix boxes, or between NT domains--NDS just works, at least to all your NetWare boxes, as well as NT (4 and 2K in domain mode,) and Solaris, with Compaq Unix and Linux in a few months. I can set up my Unix boxes to auth to the NDS tree--I don't need /etc/passwd entries for anyone (but root) if I don't want. Unix GECOS info is stored in properties of the NDS User object, and NDS groups can have UNIX group info. Also I've done some authentication and checking passwords against LDAP with great success.

    I think Novell's problem is that it's fundamentally difficult to advertise and market a directory. Unless you're a geek trying to manage a large organization (> 1000 computers and users, say,) it's hard to understand how useful and powerful a good directory really is. Active Directory is a hack to reduce the complexities of transitive domain trusts, and not much more. NDS is a solid, real directory that you can use for anything, that works now (it's been in production for nearly a decade--and yes, it wasn't very pretty when NetWare 4 first came out, but they've really gotten it right.)
  • by esobofh ( 138133 ) <khg.telus@net> on Saturday January 22, 2000 @08:30AM (#1347443)
    It look spretty much like Novell is just stating simple truth, and Microsoft did spread alot of lies and BS about their product, they have the right to defend themselves and point out where Microsoft made mistakes with regards to their product

    ----------------------------
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 22, 2000 @08:26AM (#1347444)
    back when the Mindcraft fiasco was going on I emailed the Novell person responsible for the Mindcraft rebuttal site and he seemed genuinely *pissed* off at Microsoft. It's interesting because any other time I've mailed Novell on a topic having to do with something else I didn't get a reply (or at least a real reply).

    Another point I'd like to make about Netware is while it is a superior product compared to NT the problem is that there aren't enough people who really know their way around Netware compared to those that do NT. That's going to really hamper Netware. They should do something like Sun and SCO do and sell cheap media kits/licenses. The more people that know Netware, the more likely it is going to be deployed in a commercial setting. I think this would be more sucessful in combatting M$ than just bitching and whining.
  • by nairb ( 16400 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @09:14AM (#1347445)
    A directory service is very similar to NIS+ in the Unix world. It creates a central place for managing all user accounts. Though NDS is so far ahead of where NIS could ever be, specifically with regards to replacting the data, and sharing/exporting it into other formats such as LDAP. Its also important to mention that unlike Active Directory, NDS is *NOT* platform centric, it can operate perfectly fine on a network without any netware boxes. For example I operate a small e-commerce firm we have 3 Sun E250's and about 100 Linux boxes which run on Compaq proliants, we have *no* netware servers. But when I delete a user he disappears from all the systems, when I add a user I get to pick which groups (systems) he has access to. When he changes his password, the password changes on all the systems. Its a nice pretty java interface to manage the whole thing, its a bit slow under Linux but it runs well under CDE. NDS links into the PAM (Password Authentication Module) and really takes the headaches out of syncronizing passwords, etc. Right now we're just bringing up our Intranet webserver so all .htaccess logins are also authenicated against NDS. I hate having 26 different passwords on different systems. Did I mention NDS can also manage how many systems a person can be logged into? I know your wondering what happens if NDS goes down? (to be totally honest I have no clue, since it hasn't happened yet) but its supposed to read the local password file, we removed the root user and gave another "secret" user a root login, just enough access so I could reclaim the box if necessary, but NDS has been extremely reliable for us! I think we might have had more issues if we ran NDS on Netware since I think Netware is a poor excuse for an operating system. We're playing with the idea of running Netware for the marketing people so we can use ZenWorks to manage their workstations, Novell ZenWorks rocks, but it requires Netware. FYI: The linux verion of NDS isn't out yet, but i'm running the beta and it seems fine.
  • by r2ravens ( 22773 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @12:52PM (#1347446)
    The truth is spoken in a whisper.

    I was a Novell 4.x admin for 4 1/2 years before changing jobs and ending up in an NT assimilated state organization. I have also done a lot of time as a *nix power-user/sysadmin. Personally I'm a Mac/Linux guy.

    NT shouts it FUD, and Novell quietly tells those that will listen about it's better product. And Novell continues to improve both the product itself and it's interoperability. 4 or 5 years ago, when the first Novell 4.0 came out, it was good, but I had a few frustrating problems with uptime and data corruption. By 4.01, they had it fixed and it was rock solid. I have more problems with NT 4.0 on a daily basis than I ever did with Novell 4.0's first release.

    Coming from the Novell side to NT, I was struck by how much of a joke NT was, a baby Network OS. It didn't have the reliability, it didn't have the granularity to manage users and permissions that Novell did, didn't have the scalability, and there was a bunch of resource wasting GUI right on my server! God damn it, lock the server in a room and manage it from somewhere else. If you're gonna serve stuff (that's what a server is for, right?) put all that GUI somewhere else so the server can concentrate it's resources on what it supposed to be doing. Then maybe you dont have to run a PIII-800 with a Gig of RAM just to serve some files.

    If there were employment options here where I choose to live (that being my first priority) that could get me back into a Novell or, even better, a *nix environment, I'd be on the move in a minute. Even leaving the frightening permanence of state service.

    Bottom line: in every field there are better products, better ways of doing things, and solutions with great stability that are applicable. But in most cases, it's the liars, the charlatans, the snake oil salesmen - in short, those that shout the loudest - that end up winning. Yes, this is a sad state of affairs and depressing, but we just have to keep plugging away, trying to educate people.

    Those of us who are educated, think critically and make good choices as a result will continue to experience the better products and the reduction in stress that comes with the use/management of them. Those who remain uneducated and naive, and listen to 'man behind the curtain' will be forever lost in pits of NT^H^H hell burning and rebooting day by day... unless we can educate them and remove their naivtee'.

    It seems that Novell is trying to do this now, they just need to take out a lot more full page ads and plant some employees to post to groups and handle reporters. :) Or is that precluded by the fact that they speak the truth?

    In either case, I wish them luck.

    Russ
  • by kaslu ( 24043 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @08:34AM (#1347447)
    The person who wrote
    DID YOU KNOW that Windows 2000 may crash non-Microsoft DNS servers? [novell.com] should be larted.

    I hate how MS has "embraced & extended" DNS, but
    the fact that BIND dumps core when updated by W2K clients is BIND's problem, not Microsoft's!
  • by Shadok8 ( 58859 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @11:11AM (#1347448)
    Another fine study commisioned by Microsoft - "our friends in marketing".

    I just read the Microsoft "Windows 2000 Performance Tests" document, by ZD Labs, which is found at http://www.microsoft.com/windows2000/guide/platfor m/performance/zdlabs.asp It is a performance comparison between 6 identically configured PCs running Win 95, Win 98, NT 4 and Windows 2000 Pro.

    According to Microsoft, NT 2000 Pro is faster than Windows NT 4 - as long as you only have 32M of RAM. If you have more than 32M of RAM, NT 4 takes the lead. With 128 MB of RAM, Windows 2000 was 3 percent slower than Windows NT 4.0. I wish they had done tests with 256M of RAM - if the tests indicate a trend, a 256M RAM NT 2000 workstation could be 5-10% slower than an identical NT 4 system.

    What really disgusted me is how Microsoft improperly configured the NT 4 test systems, giving NT 2000 an unfair advantage. According to Microsoft's document describing the tests, the NT 4 platforms were configured with PIO mode IDE drivers, while the NT 2000 platforms were configured with DMA mode drivers. That gives NT 2000 a significant advantage - and it was still slower. In the system configuration documentation, MS specifically states they manually enabled DMA on the Win 95 and Win 98 systems. They do not do it for the NT 4 or NT 2000 platforms. Not surprisingly, NT 2000 auto detected and loaded DMA mode IDE driver support. The NT4 box is installed with service pack 5, so it could be manually configured for DMA support - as they did they did for the Win 9x systems. But then NT 2000 would have been slower.

    Also, MS emphasized that the goal of the tests was to show performance in a real world scenario. Which brings up another question: why did they use a single 2G FAT 16 partition on all the systems? Who on earth uses FAT 16 partitions on real world NT deployments?

    Microsoft has a marketing document at: http://www.microsoft.com/PressPass/press/1999/dec9 9/w2krtmpr.asp that states, among other things: "Windows 2000 Professional is the fastest Windows client yet. Independent tests conducted by Ziff-Davis Labs and IT Week show that Windows 2000 Professional is up to 39 percent faster than Windows 95, 30 percent faster than Windows 98, and up to 24 percent faster than Windows NT Workstation 4.0 in configurations with 64 MB of memory or higher." After reading Microsoft's own performance study, I can't figure out how they can honestly state those numbers.
  • by NickHolland ( 91075 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @03:53PM (#1347449)
    Um... I don't want this to sound like a flame, but what you are saying is just plain wrong, on almost every point.

    >It was (until recently) loaded on top of DOS
    Netware v3 through v5 (and probably future versions) uses DOS as a BOOT LOADER (a task it is well suited for, in my opinion ;) and a place to store SOME driver and config files, and NOTHING MORE. The Netware OS completely takes over and shuts down DOS so completely that the DOS clock actually stops (if you DOWN and EXIT the server, and do a DATE and TIME from DOS, it will report the time and date the server was started..often years earlier!). The only thing DOS does once Netware is running is, if requested, load a device driver from either the floppy or the DOS partition of the disk (and you will see the performance really hurt when this happens, as it has to jump in and out of the 80x86 Real Mode, and they obviously felt no reason to optimize this). In fact, you can do a REMOVE DOS command which frees up the few hundred K of RAM used by DOS, and slightly improves console security (as you can no longer load anything from the floppy drive).

    OLD versions of Netware (Netware 86 and v2) were free-booting OSs. They were a pain to reconfigure. Using DOS as a boot loader really improved things at the cost of what is now a very insignificant amount of RAM overhead. I can pull a set of non-hardware RAID drives out of most any Novell server and have it BACK UP AND RUNNING on a totally different box (different disk controller, different NIC, different video card, different main board, etc.) in a matter of minutes (barring mechanical problems, like missing cables). I can't think of any other server OS which can make this claim.

    >It still only has a DOS-like shell with no decent text processing utilities.
    If you consider the Netware environment DOS-like, you have obviously never used many other OSs. The only thing it shares with DOS is a command prompt (i.e., it isn't a GUI). It gives you a command prompt, it has new tasks spawn off their own screens automatically (this is a really cool UI feature I wish Unix and other command prompt desktop OSs had!).

    Text processing utilities? Huh? This is a file server OS, not a workstation OS! The LARGEST configuration files I have ever seen on a well-implemented Netware server were less than two pages long. The text editing facilities are limited, but you don't need WordPerfect (or Word 2000) to edit small configuration files. For reference, Netware gave you a full-screen text editor for editing these things when MS was still giving nothing better than edlin. The editor lets you type, correct, and even cut, copy and paste. Not bad for something that is used to edit tiny little files! It even qualifies as fairly intuitive. If you cut your teeth on Word 95 or even MS's EDIT, you may disagree, but EDIT.NLM was implemented long before these products..it can't be faulted for not following their "lead"... It certainly wins prizes compared to vi or emacs for "hit the ground running".

    >And until Netware 5, it used an outmoded proprietary network protocol.
    Proprietary, yes. Certainly. Stupidly, even (they should have thrown it open long ago instead of militantly demanding licensing fees). Outmoded? Hardly. First of all, IPX is a near zero-maintenance protocol. You provide a unique number for all servers (I use the license number to ensure uniqueness) and for each NICs/protocol set. After that, you just plug in workstations, no IP numbering problems. Hey, every NIC has an address, might as well use it, right? Move a WS? Reboot, and it is back up and running at its new location. Of course, some IS people hate it for just this reason...it doesn't ensure job security as IP does.
    The number one reason I like IPX/SPX now, however, is the security. Now that so many offices are connected to the Internet, there are real security issues if you have systems live on the 'net. You have to have and maintain a good, solid firewall at all times. Or...use IPX/SPX for all your private company operations, and use TCP/IP ONLY for getting outside the building! Talk about a perfect firewall: A server which doesn't even recognize the hostile protocols running around the wire. I actually don't care for Netware 5 for just that reason. It scares the heck out of me to think of any server of any kind (probable exception: OpenBSD) holding company data sitting live on the Internet. Again, though..job security for IS people.

    >I don't know much about the latest version, but it still looks like something that came out of the ark.
    The same would be said of a Unix command prompt by someone who didn't know much about it.

    Netware IS a server platform! It is NOT a general purpose OS, and it NEVER was intended to be! Please judge this very capable, very solid platform at the job it was intended and sold to be.

    As for adherence to open standards, this is a personal preferance, and one I respect. Ultimately, however, it is results that count. For most businesses, the computer is only a tool to their business, not the goal in and of itself. Netware is the closest thing to "set and forget" networking I have seen, and the fastest repair time OS I have seen. This is very critical to real-world business. Would I run a Web server on Netware? Heck, no. Would I port Doom to Netware? No (although the XWindows interface of Netware 5 would potentially make it a cute stunt). Would I relish the thought of implementing a client-server database engine on Netware? No, although the results would be delicious, the process would be very painful, though NW4x and 5 make it less so. Would I use it as a platform for E-mail or Internet access? No, there are better choices. As a file and print server, however, which is a critical service in most PC-based business now, I haven't found a way to beat it.

    Yes, there are few really good people at Netware installation, configuration, and troubleshooting but my experience is there are no more who (really) know NT. NO ONE has more than what, three years of experience with NTv4? I've got five years professional experience with Netware 4, and another six years professional experience with Netware 3, which Netware 4 builds on very directly (and another four years of experience with earlier versions, but NW3+ is so different from NW2- that it doesn't really help much).

    I would argue that having an network OS that is "easy" to set up and get running is very counter-productive. You don't want newbies setting up the backbone of your business! Many people consider the loading of an OS the measure or success..these people don't even understand how far they are from success.

    O.k...enough with my soap box. I don't mean to attack you or anyone personally. I'm just very tired of people who don't understand the product condemming Netware for totally bogus reasons, and treating this product which the rest of the industry has yet to surpass as a has-been.

    Nick.
  • by festers ( 106163 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @09:10AM (#1347450) Journal
    Here's a link [microsoft.com] if you are interested in reading some of MS's reponse, especially concerning Active Directory. There are two previous parts linked at the bottom. I not sure if I'll know what to believe after all FUD settles.


    --------
  • by NightHwk ( 111982 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @08:34AM (#1347451)
    The Turtle and the Rabbit will duke it out while the penguin waddles ever closer to the proverbial finish line...

    /me wonders if we will see this battle move into the T.V. arena...

    "Netware hates, children, do you hate children? Vote Windows for 2000!"

    "Gates had lots of pr0n in college, do you want pr0n in the hands of children? Vote NetWare in 2000!"

    This may be more fun then the 2000 U.S. presidential elections.

    NightHawk
  • by legLess ( 127550 ) on Saturday January 22, 2000 @10:02AM (#1347452) Journal
    I run a Netware 4.11 box at work for file/print/directory, and an NT box for mail/proxy (I know, I know - I'm building Linux boxen to replace it). I know NT much, much better than Netware for one simple reason - the Netware box never needs any attention. It sits in a dark room and hums along, oblivious to the world. I patch it every 9 months or so, but otherwise it's never down. NT, on the other hand, has made me an expert - I can rebuild an NT box in my sleep (because I've had to).

"I never let my schooling get in the way of my education." -- Mark Twain

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