Novell will make its GroupWise software available for the Linux operating system for the first time, and confirmed it would release the source code for a popular SuSE tool for managing Linux servers to the open-source community.
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GroupWise 6.5 for Linux will be available on 30 March for both SuSE Linux and Red Hat's Linux distribution, said Marina Wasler, Novell's director of marketing for central Europe.
GroupWise lets users access e-mail, calendaring, instant messaging and other applications. It is already offered for Novell's NetWare operating system, Windows NT and Windows 2000.
Customers migrating from competing products will be able to buy the software for the price of an upgrade, while customers running GroupWise 6.5 on other platforms will be able to get the Linux version for no additional fee.
Richard Seibt, Novell's president for the Europe, Middle East and Africa region, confirmed that Novell will release SuSE's YaST (Yet Another Setup Tool) program for installing and managing Linux under an open-source licence, providing developers with more freedom in how they can use the software.
Speaking at the CeBIT trade show in Hannover, Novell executives also announced plans to release a product called ZenWorks Patch Management later this month.
Built around software from PatchLink, the software will help administrators deal with the continuous stream of patches released for Microsoft's Windows operating system.
The product tells them which patches and holes they have on each Windows system in their network, and can deploy patches automatically to fix holes before hackers can exploit them.
It will be available next week for an annual subscription of $18 per device.
James Niccolai writes for IDG News Service