HP to offer Suse Linux on the desktop

Novell has announced that HP will begin loading Suse Linux 10 on its desktop PCs, joining Dell and Lenovo as partners who pre-install the open source operating system.

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Novell has announced that HP will begin loading Suse Linux 10 on its desktop PCs, joining Dell and Lenovo as partners who pre-install the open source operating system.

The news comes just a few weeks after Novell announced server and desktop revenue had grown 65 percent in the past year. The company does not break down the revenue – which hit US$30 million in its fiscal first quarter – by desktop and server, but CEO Ron Hovsepian says the desktop side of the business is "on a good track toward doubling its revenue".

"We like where the desktop is going, we like the direction," he adds. The Dell deal likely will add some momentum to that direction.

Novell has also been detailing the underpinnings of its Suse Linux 11 desktop and server. The operating system is slated to roll out in 2009, according to Justin Steinman, directory of product marketing for Linux and open platform solutions at Novell.

The server will become a foundation element of the company's new Fossa vision around service-oriented architecture-like, IT infrastructure. The company laid out 11 key themes including an appliance options, a stand-alone virtualisation platform, deep support for Windows Server 2008 and "green" features.

Novell plans to add to Suse Linux datacentre technologies and will include new features designed to support appliance developers. Novell also plans to add high-availability capabilities, support of advanced interconnections such as Infiniband, and features for low-latency computing.

In addition, green features will be added to help reduce energy consumption using virtualisation. Novell also will add new power-management capabilities for chips and disk drives.

Novell says it will upgrade its Xen virtualisation technology to support multiple formats and support stand-alone and embedded versions of the virtualisation platform.

The company also plans to focus on bettering its story on Unix migrations by meeting or beating performance benchmarks posted by Solaris and adding migration toolsets. On the Windows front, Novell will focus on optimisation, adding advanced support for Windows Server 2008 virtual guest operating systems, systems management and rich internet application (RIA) support.

On the desktop, Novell will focus on usability features, collaboration and security.

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