Wal-Mart endorses Novell, Microsoft Deal

Microsoft Corp. and Novell Inc. said Tuesday that Wal-Mart Stores Inc. became the latest customer to take advantage of the two companies' collaboration on Linux and Windows.

Under the agreement, Wal-Mart will begin using Novell's SUSE Linux, the open-source computer operating system, and Novell will provide support for the software, receiving pre-paid support certificates from Microsoft.

In November, Microsoft and Novell agreed to improve the interoperability of their operating systems - Windows and SUSE. Microsoft further agreed to pay for and distribute certificates redeemable for SUSE support, and the two companies agreed to provide patent coverage for each other's customers.

In a press release, the two companies said Novell has so far received 35,000 three-year certificates.

Wal-Mart Chief Technology Officer Nancy Stewart told Dow Jones Newswires she plans to use SUSE Linux for the first time in servers that will also run Windows to better make use of hardware capacity. The machines will take advantage of virtualization software designed to allow the two operating systems to share computer resources.

Wal-Mart also wants to use the dual operating systems in small stores it operates in Mexico, and South and Central America, Stewart said. The company expects the two operating systems to work flawlessly together, she said, referring to the promise of the agreement.

Source: MarketWatch

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