Novell has introduced the first workgroup suite for small businesses that provides organisations with a flexible and cost-effective solution based on proven, open standards-based software.

The Novell Open Workgroup Suite Small Business Edition includes Linux server and desktop components with e-mail, collaboration and the most advanced open source office products available. As a result, customers get a markedly improved return on their IT investments and aren't locked into expensive, proprietary-only software bundles.
"Small businesses are increasingly interested in Linux," says Ray Boggs, vice president of Small/Medium Business Research at IDC. "Lower purchase prices are part of the appeal, but so too is the flexibility and choice made possible through open source solutions. Ease of acquisition and installation will also play a key role in converting small business interest into small business purchases."
The Novell Open Workgroup Suite Small Business Edition is based on SUSE Linux Enterprise and includes Novell GroupWise for e-mail and calendaring; Novell Open Enterprise Server for advanced storage management, user and rights administration, and clustering and failover capabilities; SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop from Novell for complete desktop productivity; and the Novell edition of the popular office productivity suite for Windows and Linux.
More than just a bundle of enterprise products priced for small businesses, Novell's suite features a simple yet customisable installation process along with remote management capabilities so solution providers can remotely manage their small business customers' IT infrastructures, thus reducing costs and improving service.
The Novell Open Workgroup Suite Small Business Edition also has a newly developed integration layer that makes it easier for resellers and service providers to integrate their specialised products into the solution. The suite is supported by popular business software applications certified to work with SUSE Linux Enterprise.
Allison Singh, systems engineering manager for Novell South Africa, says: "IT expenditures are becoming an increasingly large part of the operating budgets of small businesses, and when it comes to reducing budgets, these businesses have had limited choice. This specialised suite from Novell eliminates that lock-in and gives customers greater choice and flexibility, letting them put their business interests and their customers first."
Novell Open Workgroup Suite Small Business Edition is targeted for general availability in September.