Ron Hovsepian, president of Waltham, Mass.-based Novell North America, said the new relationship with Dell won't undermine the bottom line of Novell solution providers, even though the SuSE software will be available direct to customers.
"We want to set an environment that creates channel harmony," Hovsepian said. "That part has been taken into consideration with the go-to-market strategy. More of our solution partners are in services-based businesses, and we believe that [this deal] will create more services opportunities out in the market."
Staying true to its adversity to inventory, Dell won't preinstall the Novell SuSE software, since only 1 percent of Dell customers buy hardware with preloaded software, York said. Instead, the vendor will install the software at the plant when customers order it with the servers, she said. York didn't give a timetable for the possible availability of SuSE on Dell four-way servers.
Dell also sells Red Hat Linux software, but York said there would be no change in that relationship in light of the Novell SuSE deal.