Novell CTO Jeff Jaffe Outlines Technical Strategy for 2008

Jeff Jaffe , Executive Vice President and Chief Technical Officer for Novell, published a blog post 2 days ago outlining the company’s technical strategy for 2008. This is what he had to say about its focus on virtualization:

We see agility and customer focus as key in our progress on virtualization – one of the hottest areas in the industry. In SUSE Linux Enterprise 10, we introduced open source virtualization into a commercial Linux distribution before anyone else did. Once we introduced this, we spoke to customers. We spoke to partners. We spoke to analysts. We spoke to everyone! By listening, we discovered that we had not yet nailed it. In 2007 we listened, and in a very short time we became a leader in virtualization.

Our Open Enterprise Server customers told us that they wanted NetWare virtualized on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server – to take advantage of all of the drivers provided by Linux. And it needed to perform. After all, file and storage performance for NetWare is critical. A unique partnership between our Workgroup team and our Open Platform Solutions team has resulted in virtualization capability in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 SP1 that is higher performance and more manageable than any other open source solution. This is the basis for OES 2.

We talked to other customers. They did not want virtualization as a bare technology. They wanted it to be managed. Novell quickly turned around and built technology to manage workloads and provision virtual machines. ZENworks Orchestrator. The best managed open source virtualization solution.

And we listened to customers and partners some more. They said get a tight partnership with Microsoft to optimize Windows on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server. Build a joint lab for testing – so customers have the confidence that our solution works best with Microsoft. We did all of that!

Here is the totality. From a barebones hypervisor in SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, we now have an industrial strength hypervisor, supporting the demanding NetWare workload, optimized for Microsoft, SAP and others, with a joint lab for testing. It is manageable with ZENworks and will address low latencies.

How did we do this? We listened!

Virtualization clearly is a key topic for the industry, and with the 2007 results we have both staked a claim and demonstrated our agile processes. Look for this to continue to be an area of significant investment in 2008.

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