Novell's Linux business spikes since Microsoft deal

Novell's Linux business has soared 243% since last November when the company signed its controversial deal with Microsoft, Novell's director of marketing Justin Steinman has confirmed.

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Novell's Linux business has soared 243% since last November when the company signed its controversial deal with Microsoft, Novell's director of marketing Justin Steinman has confirmed.

Last November, the two companies struck a collaboration deal under which Microsoft is supporting SUSE Linux on systems that run Windows to make it easier for users to incorporate both operating systems. As part of the deal, Microsoft is offering sales support for SUSE Linux and will also co-develop technologies with Novell.

Steinman said part of its growth was directly related to the Microsoft deal, adding that Novell has billed more than $100m (£52m) in business through its Microsoft relationship. He added that the growth was also due to the halo effect of the arrangement.

"When we're out there competing with Red Hat, [our salespeople] are saying, 'Our Linux is recommended by Microsoft,' and customers that already have a Windows investment say it seems to make sense to pick the Linux that works with Windows."

Microsoft, however, wasn't quite ready to declare financial victory.

Peter Rodriques, director of intellectual property and licensing at Microsoft, said he wasn't prepared to say that Microsoft has generated more revenue than it would have without the agreement with Novell. But he said he was declaring victory in terms of the partnership in general.

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