November 29, 2006 9:25 AM PST

Novell halts its Hula dance

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Novell tunes in open-source server software

February 15, 2005
Novell has taken its employees off the Hula open-source e-mail and calendaring software project it launched last year.

In a message to Hula project participants Tuesday, Novell representative Peter Teichman said the company has decided to shift its efforts elsewhere.

"In the end, we had to conclude that we couldn't justify investing at the same level in Hula going forward. So those of us who have been developing Hula full-time will be moving on to other roles and to other parts of the company," Teichman wrote.

Novell launched Hula in February of last year as an open-source alternative to Microsoft's Exchange, IBM's Domino and Novell's own proprietary GroupWise product line.

At the time, company executives said the Hula project exemplified the company's dual approach to software development, melding both open-source and proprietary software.

But Novell has found that nearly every business customer it approached already had an e-mail and calendar server in place, Teichman said.

He said Novell is looking for members of the Hula community to take over Novell's leadership to continue working on the code. The initial release from Hula was slated to come out in a few months.

"I think the Web interface is where we've done the most interesting work, and integrating that with existing mail systems is the key to getting good and usable open-source Web mail out to the public," Teichman said.

By contrast, the project's server, while good, is largely redundant, he said.

"We still really care about Hula and are interested in working on it going forward, but I think we're going to need someone from the community to take a leadership role and continue to move things forward with direction," he said.

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The timing couldn't be more perfect...
I think that pretty much says it all.

I hereby nominate a new name for OpenSuSE:


I'm also thinking OpenSuSe should be forked and supported by a group that isn't an MS puppet.

Let's be honest - OpenSuSe is a good product, but now that the strings being pulled have turned into steel cables...well, let's just say my faith in any company to purchase rights to a distribution, such as what Novell did, with the intent of supporting community efforts, is swiftly becoming less than zero.

Oh how a week changes everything.
Posted by `WarpKat (275 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Give it a break.
Novell's pact with Microsoft has at least showed the world one thing. Many in the open source community are cry babies. Don't get me wrong I think the pact sucks.

Since the Novell pact I've been shying away from Linux. Not because of the Novell pact, but because it's becoming obvious to me that many open source people feel that proprietary software and drivers are an abomination. They think everybody should just open source everything and those that don't just can't play with Linux.

I'm going to say this. Linux needs proprietary software companies to gain greater acceptance on the desktop. Proprietary software companies don't need Linux.

Not that any body cares, but I'm looking at BSD. They seem to be much friendlier to proprietary software. The fact is that companies like nVidia aren't going to open source their drivers. If Linux community can't deal with that then it's bad for them.

On a side note. I think GPL 3 is going to do more harm than good to the open source communities who use it.
Posted by System Tyrant (1453 comments )
Link Flag
Sad to see this happen
I really like Hula, thought it was a good project. As for the Novell/MS thing what is the big deal? Let it play out and who does not like it move to something else and get on with your life, many other distro you can use.

As for me I like SUSE and I am confident Novell is doing what they feel is best for customer/users of SUSE. So switch if you do not like it.
Posted by damiandennison (55 comments )
Reply Link Flag
If you want real Linux, go with SLACKWARE.COM, and figure out the rest.

If you want a real UNIX OS, go with Solaris, enterprise level OS.
Posted by rmiecznik (224 comments )
Reply Link Flag
unfortunately even *nix has it's 15 year old Fanboys
We should be looking for solutions and openly premoting any *nix usage not calling people stupid for not choosing the particular version that you arbitrarily like. This elitist crap does not one any good.

Slack is good but new users are going to run for the hills at it's sight.

Ubuntu is easy for new users but riles the FS community.

Debian is focused on freedom but again like Slack, it's scared a lot of would-be *nix users away.

Red Hat is good if you want to go business with support (read, someone elses neck to strangle if it goes wrong)

Mandrake is if you like the RPM distributions without wanting Fedora/Red Hat.

Solaris is a good Unix; why not recommend OpenSolaris though?

FreeBSD is a good Unix.
OpenBSD is a good Unix.

SUSE is good thoguh we've not yet seen how it'll change with this deal. It may be for better or worse.

Pleanty of choice, pleanty of users to go around. I belive the saying goes "The pies big enough for everyone" though I don't remember the original author.
Posted by jabbotts (492 comments )
Link Flag
What! Are ya really that dense?
Novell is a publicly traded corporation. Its in their best interest to pursue avenues that will make them money.

So why waste money developing yet another mail server that has no real market.

Oh, I know. You're upset because you were counting on a free version of a mail package because you're too cheap to go out and buy a package like Exchange or Lotus.

Get a friggin clue.

This has nothing to do with MS, but that there is no market to justify the expense.
Posted by dargon19888 (412 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Who is mad?
You are the one that seem to be mad and why?
Posted by damiandennison (55 comments )
Link Flag

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