Anonymous_User Absent Member.
Absent Member.

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

> but I'm not sure alternatives to
> this particular plan are going to do that!


Mine does, but they can't have it. 😛


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grimlock1 Absent Member.
Absent Member.

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

Matthew wrote:
>
> As for problems. My experience there has been far worse with Windows
> and related Microsoft programs than it has with the Novell products I've
> use.


I don't have client32 issues with my windows servers 🙂
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Anonymous_User Absent Member.
Absent Member.

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

I would like to say that my group is not effected by this change however we
have maintence on our products BUT the problem is that Novell keep raising
the cost of the maintence to the point that I'm losing an on going argument
that when the facts are presented of the cost of my MLA program and
Microsoft's upgrade program, it's now cheaper on an yearly basis to migrate
to Microsoft.

I'm losing Novell for file services next year and I suspect GroupWise will
shortly despite the fact that I have Netware 6.5 servers one can view their
uptime to determine when the last service pack was applied.

It's nuts that Novell is going to be the reason for Novell's downfall, not
the people who use it.


"Matthew" <systemRemovEtyrant@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:9spum.12298$7G7.5417@kovat.provo.novell.com...
> This forum is reverberating with all kinds of bad vibes over the new
> novell support plan. You would think that would constitute a re-evaluation
> of the support plan. While it's obvious that all of Novell customers
> don't speak here and many probably don't even care about the new support
> plan it's always the vocal minority that can cause the biggest upset.
>
> With that said. The old saying about 'if you aren't part of the solution
> the you are part of the problem' I think is absolutely true here. If you
> love Novell, as many of you do, then offer up some alternatives. Some of
> you already are, but I see a lot of complaining and not many ideas.
>
> May I suggest that you offer a suggestion and maybe a short explanation of
> why it would be a good idea.



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Anonymous_User Absent Member.
Absent Member.

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

Patrick Farrell wrote:
> Matthew wrote:
>> That's part of the problem isn't it. Even if Novell was doing
>> everything right by you people still want to move to something else.

>
> I'd disagree with that. If people didn't have these issues, a lot less
> end users would complain. Everyone needs to remember that we I.T. guys
> aren't living in a vacuum. If we're debugging zen/gw/netware-oes login
> troubles, it's because the end users are having the problems and it's
> moved to us to fix. So ultimately it's the end users who are
> complaining about Novell problems and we're caught in a position of
> taking grief from them as we support a company that now appears won't
> back us up in that support.


Why is it when there is a problem with a Novell product it has to be
fixed but when it's a Microsoft product that is having problem it just
gets accepted that it doesn't work. 🙂

Brad
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grimlock1 Absent Member.
Absent Member.

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

Brad Averbeck wrote:

> Why is it when there is a problem with a Novell product it has to be
> fixed but when it's a Microsoft product that is having problem it just
> gets accepted that it doesn't work. 🙂
>
> Brad


I expect it to work with them too however I don't get to meet the MS
developers face to face as you do with Novell at BrainShare so it's
harder to yell at them.

Also they aren't being so amazingly stupid as to think making their
product harder to support is a great idea.

(Someone will link something and prove me wrong there I'm sure)
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Knowledge Partner
Knowledge Partner

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

Hi,

Brad Averbeck wrote:
>
> Why is it when there is a problem with a Novell product it has to be
> fixed but when it's a Microsoft product that is having problem it just
> gets accepted that it doesn't work. 🙂


Because, let's face it blunt and seriously, unless you live in the past
(say 5 to 10 years ago), your example simply is hypothetical. Why?
Because the Microsoft stuff *does* work these days, whereas Novells
often doesn't. That easy.


CU,
--
Massimo Rosen
Novell Product Support Forum Sysop
No emails please!
http://www.cfc-it.de
CU,
--
Massimo Rosen
Micro Focus Knowledge Partner
No emails please!
http://www.cfc-it.de
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Knowledge Partner
Knowledge Partner

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

I honestly wish I had a magic answer/wand to wave and fix things that would:

a) benefit the customers
b) ADD new customers
c) KEEP existing customers
d) Increase revenue for Novell

But I don't.

MS is the big behemoth and for better or worse people (usually CIO level) migrate based on (IMO) poor business decisions like: everyone's using MS, etc.

I've seen a few valid cases for say, GroupWise to Exchange (ie, customer has a Document management system or something that only works with Exchange).

I don't like when one company owns the majority market share (especially if it was as a result of using their monopoly unfairly--but that's my opinion).

I don't see how, given this economic climate, revenues can be increased by charging more for current items, or charging for items that used to be free. Not even MS is doing this (I vaguely remember seeing an article that MS is actually cutting some prices on things --maybe the Select plan or something--but can't remember the specifics).

What MS can do, that Novell cannot, is "force" things on their customers. The majority of shops have locked themselves into MS solutions and are either forced to go along (because of their own choices), or (IMO) very rarely, switch to competitors items.

To keep existing customers I think Novell needs to re-examine some of their licensing (ala GroupWise--it's stupid, IMO to charge for every mailbox even when it's shared, although the EULA says "per user"--but Novell defines a user as any mailbox that can send/receive email--not even MS does this).

In addition, perhaps modifying the support (the outsourced support is truly terrible most of the time, IMO). I'd almost prefer the old way where we had X SR's that went to upper-level techs instead of unlimited going to India where I have to wait several weeks of not solving anything only to have to ask repeatedly to get it escalated.

I do think the GroupWise promotion was a good idea, although I don't know how Novell made out for getting new customers.

Also I think Novell needs to be more competitive with their "LA" customers (ie: ALA, SLA, MLA, whatever it is).

Example:

MS comes into a customer and says we can get all your stuff migrated from Novell to MS and we'll give an even larger discount than the already discounted state pricing. Novell needs to step in and say, we'll cut your maintenance by X if you stay with us.

Instead (at least around here) they just don't do anything. Of course, it didn't help matters that there was no state contract for almost 2 years, so nobody could buy maintenance even if they wanted (or were legally required).

I will say, in some instances, Novell does a far better job of listening to customers (note: in some instances) than say, MS, IBM, or McAfee. Some examples are during the beta cycles for say, GroupWise, OES, and NAM. ZCM has been a mixed bag, but the last few betas have been much more positive.

I've been waiting for over 5 years for McAfee to address certain things (as have the other people in the McAfee betas) and we get nowhere. Same thing with MS and IBM (trust me, we've submitted requests and they just sit there and MAYBE 5 years later it'll show up).

I dunno, I keep rambling on here, but I truly wish I had the magic arrow or something to truly do all items a-d (if I did, I have a feeling I'd be rich).

🙂
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Knowledge Partner
Knowledge Partner

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

Hi,

kjhurni wrote:
>
> I honestly wish I had a magic answer/wand to wave and fix things that
> would:
>
> a) benefit the customers
> b) ADD new customers
> c) KEEP existing customers
> d) Increase revenue for Novell
>
> But I don't.


I have. Make the products better (again). You're welcome. 😉

To expand:
By "better" I mean every aspect from design, e.g develop (not buy!)
software that match customers expectation in *what* they do. If
necessary *ask* the customers (and please a proper, representative set
thereof, and not one or two key accounts that may have weird ideas that
may please them, but are the opposite of what the majority of the other
customers want ).
For instance, I doubt such a question, if properly asked, had resulted
of the design of ZCM, at least not as the ultimate replacement fpr ZDM,
but maybe only as *additional* product for non-Novell shops. Instead we
would have a ZDM8 with full eDirectory support now, supporting current
Windows versions, but still being designed to leverage the strong points
of eDir.

Next, *how* they do it. Make them easier to install, easier to
configure, *and* better documented.

Finally, make them less buggy than they are now.

Yes, that of course does cost money. There's no money to make if you're
not ready to invest first. You can't gain customers through cost cutting
only as Novell does. At the very best, you can save some money through
cuts in unimportant areas, which you can then reinvest in areas where it
brings new customers. Novell instead cuts costs in the most important
areas like development and support.

> MS is the big behemoth and for better or worse people (usually CIO
> level) migrate based on (IMO) poor business decisions like: everyone's
> using MS, etc.


That was true until 5 to 10 years ago. Today, they migrate to Microsoft
because their products work, interoperate, are easy to install, *and* do
what customer needs. E.G exactly what Novells product used to do, and
where MS felt short in the past. But the past doesn't count anymore,
even if it takes some people a long time to realize that even such past
truths can change into todays prejudices.

> I've seen a few valid cases for say, GroupWise to Exchange (ie,
> customer has a Document management system or something that only works
> with Exchange).


Which brings up a very important point: Third party support. Third party
support directly depends on the market share. And the market share is
defined through amount of customers *running* a product, and not, as
Novell sess it, the amount of customers paying maintenance.

Let me give an example: Let's just assume today 40% of 1000 customers
*running* Novell software pay maintenance. After Novells here announced
move, *hypothetically*, they increase that to 80%, while at the same
time losing 200, previously non-maintenance customers. Short-term, that
looks like a wise move, as Novell now makes more money out of fewer
running installations.

Long-term, however, this means a lower marketshare. Which results in
lower third party support, because third parties don't care if the
software they are going to interact with is under maintenance or not.
They *do* care exclusively for the total amount of running
installations, because these are their potential customers. So what on a
cursorily view looks like a wise business move, will turn around and
haunt you, because third party support is crucial. And if third party
support declines, so will eventually your own customers.

> I don't like when one company owns the majority market share
> (especially if it was as a result of using their monopoly unfairly--but
> that's my opinion).


I don't like it either. And I don't like Microsoft. That doesn't make me
blind though. And you know what? There was a time when Novell was a
monopoly.

> I don't see how, given this economic climate, revenues can be increased
> by charging more for current items, or charging for items that used to
> be free.


Of course not, because it's not going to work. Common sense applies even
to this industry.

> What MS can do, that Novell cannot, is "force" things on their
> customers.


Correct. To some extend. Previous monopolies have come to an end.
Microsoft is smart enough not to let that happen. Whenever there's a
danger to it, they make a smart (businesswise) move to prevent it. Like
lowering costs, if necessary to zero. Or (with their almost unlimited
resources) accelerate the release of a new product massively when the
predecessor has failed (see Vista).

The question is, how did Microsoft get there? By doing everything
possible to increase their market share. For instance microsoft seeingly
accepted a lot of pirated installations to get there. For a very long
time, they made it extremely easy to pirate their software, knowingly.
Because they knew that would gain them the crucial third party support
they once didn't have compared to e.g Novell at that time. Or by even
giving away IE for free, and made it extremely easy for everybody to use
it, as it was simply there.

They also "bought" a lot of third party support, and still do, for
instance by almost giving away Windows to OEMs to preinstall on their
PCs.
They also used evil tactics like spreading FUD, or blackmailing (or
rewarding) their OEM partners to not sell alternative software.

> The majority of shops have locked themselves into MS
> solutions and are either forced to go along (because of their own
> choices), or (IMO) very rarely, switch to competitors items.
>
> To keep existing customers I think Novell needs to re-examine some of
> their licensing (ala GroupWise--it's stupid, IMO to charge for every
> mailbox even when it's shared, although the EULA says "per user"--but
> Novell defines a user as any mailbox that can send/receive email--not
> even MS does this).


There's some truth in this. Instead, Novell does or did the opposite in
the past. Like making inactive GW Mailboxes suddenly require a license.
That brought them more revenue short-term. But also decreased the market
share, as there *are* customers that were pissed off enough by this
unannounced move that they eventually dropped GW.

> In addition, perhaps modifying the support (the outsourced support is
> truly terrible most of the time, IMO).


Which gets even worse considering that more customers *need* support now
due to the decreasing product quality and ease-of-use and installation.

I know *many* of my customers are still my and Novells customers,
because they never ever need Novell support directly, but always only
through me. That was another not-so-smart move, at least for my
customers (although I know that can't be applied universally). Novell
tried to give maintenance customers some incentive by including free
support for them. What that meant for some of my customers, is that they
of course now had it for free (instead of having to pay me) so they went
that route. Those that did either came back to me after trying it,
happily paying me for my superiour support, or (and that *did* happen)
left Novell behind after having bad experiences with the "free" Novell
support.

Same priciple: By "giving away" support for free, of course Novells
support calls have increased. Without also investing into this, so that
Novell can cope with it without loss of quality, the quality of support
declined, and customers ran away. Short-term gain (by getting more
customers onto maintenance first), followed by a long-term loss due to
the decreasing quality and unhappy customers that move elsewhere.

> I'd almost prefer the old way
> where we had X SR's that went to upper-level techs instead of unlimited
> going to India where I have to wait several weeks of not solving
> anything only to have to ask repeatedly to get it escalated.


You're not alone. Many customers happily pay for *better* service or
products.

> I do think the GroupWise promotion was a good idea, although I don't
> know how Novell made out for getting new customers.


It was a very good idea. Unfortunatly, what was missing was an
accompanied marketing to go with it. Many many many Novell partners
almost exclusively deal with Novell customers. E.G, Partners in this
case are the wrong marketing strategy, as they don't have contact to the
intended receipients. Instead, when trying to attack competitors, it has
to be made public by Novell themself, in a visible way. Like - heaven
forbid - putting up ads notifying potentially unhappy customers of
competing products of their offer.

> Also I think Novell needs to be more competitive with their "LA"
> customers (ie: ALA, SLA, MLA, whatever it is).
>
> Example:
>
> MS comes into a customer and says we can get all your stuff migrated
> from Novell to MS and we'll give an even larger discount than the
> already discounted state pricing. Novell needs to step in and say,
> we'll cut your maintenance by X if you stay with us.


Here I disagree. Novell cannot compete with Microsoft through price
alone, and they can't survive on giving their stuff away. Novell needs
to have better products, so that the customer says "Thanks, but no
thanks" when MS shows up.

But Novell desperately needs to show up at customers *at all*. Ask them
what's up, what they like, what they don't like, all that stuff. Showing
face.

> Instead (at least around here) they just don't do anything.


Right.

> Of course,
> it didn't help matters that there was no state contract for almost 2
> years, so nobody could buy maintenance even if they wanted (or were
> legally required).
>
> I will say, in some instances, Novell does a far better job of
> listening to customers (note: in some instances) than say, MS, IBM, or
> McAfee. Some examples are during the beta cycles for say, GroupWise,
> OES, and NAM. ZCM has been a mixed bag, but the last few betas have
> been much more positive.


Yes and no. It's true that Novell used to be the company that probably
listened the most to customers. They also used to be (and really hope
still am in light of this) one of the few (maybe only) that admitted
mistakes on customer feedback, and corrected them fast. That too,
however has declined, especially after Novell seems to have somewhat
lost their sense for customer nedds in terms of products. It is one
thing to revise a decision that is easily revisable. If you however
design a whole product that fails because it doesn't do what customers
want, it's extremely hard to revise that decision if you only find out
after having completely developed the product to market (unless you are
Microsoft, and have virtually unlimited resources). That's the area
where Novell needs to listen better *before* it's too late. Of course
I'm talking of ZCM mostly here. But OES also falls in that category,
especially in it's early days and versions.

> I've been waiting for over 5 years for McAfee to address certain things
> (as have the other people in the McAfee betas) and we get nowhere. Same
> thing with MS and IBM (trust me, we've submitted requests and they just
> sit there and MAYBE 5 years later it'll show up).
>
> I dunno, I keep rambling on here, but I truly wish I had the magic
> arrow or something to truly do all items a-d (if I did, I have a feeling
> I'd be rich).


Hehehe. Believe me, I'd often dreamt of being the King of Novell (and I
mean King, not President or CEO of a public company, too many politics
and restrictions) for a limited time, say 2 years. 😉

CU,
--
Massimo Rosen
Novell Product Support Forum Sysop
No emails please!
http://www.cfc-it.de
CU,
--
Massimo Rosen
Micro Focus Knowledge Partner
No emails please!
http://www.cfc-it.de
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Knowledge Partner
Knowledge Partner

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

mrosen;1861789 wrote:
..Ask them
what's up, what they like, what they don't like, all that stuff. Showing
face.


Excellent posts you guys (among all the other good ones) ... for me (as I'm sure also others) the forum is clearly showing the beauty and strong vision/passion of the people in these forums. I find it close to overwhelming there are still that many of us out there. 🙂

For something completely different.... you might be asking yourself why I've quoted the above. It's just the bit I stuttered on while reading your posts, fully into it... then, suddenly..., I found myself asking... was it about giving or showing...


... sorry

Back to the serious side of things.. hope this all hits home and Novell now shows it listens and responds in a fashion most (98% here) are hoping.

I'd say the alternative would be to get back on track, focus on the products that count most and bring back the level of quality we are all hoping for.

Anders already mentioned it would be a long road.. Just keep going at it and keep the faith. There is still a good core willing to help.. but only if we're not getting the feeling we're being hassled. Taking back what they've thrown at us would be a good starting point.

Saying more would just be repeating what's already been said.
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Anonymous_User Absent Member.
Absent Member.

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

Massimo Rosen wrote:
> Hi,
>
> Brad Averbeck wrote:
>> Why is it when there is a problem with a Novell product it has to be
>> fixed but when it's a Microsoft product that is having problem it just
>> gets accepted that it doesn't work. 🙂

>
> Because, let's face it blunt and seriously, unless you live in the past
> (say 5 to 10 years ago), your example simply is hypothetical. Why?
> Because the Microsoft stuff *does* work these days, whereas Novells
> often doesn't. That easy.
>
>
> CU,

That hasn't been my experience. MS products still crash on a regular
basis. It's usually the same fix, reboot. But my Novell stuff is
pretty rock solid.

Brad
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Knowledge Partner
Knowledge Partner

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

Brad Averbeck;1862007 wrote:
Massimo Rosen wrote:
> Hi,
>
> Brad Averbeck wrote:
>> Why is it when there is a problem with a Novell product it has to be
>> fixed but when it's a Microsoft product that is having problem it just
>> gets accepted that it doesn't work. 🙂

>
> Because, let's face it blunt and seriously, unless you live in the past
> (say 5 to 10 years ago), your example simply is hypothetical. Why?
> Because the Microsoft stuff *does* work these days, whereas Novells
> often doesn't. That easy.
>
>
> CU,

That hasn't been my experience. MS products still crash on a regular
basis. It's usually the same fix, reboot. But my Novell stuff is
pretty rock solid.

Brad


I guess we have the complete opposite.

NetWare crashes/abends far more often than any of our Windows 2000/2003 servers have ever done.

Groupwise is prone to more database issues (IMO) than Exchange (and yes, I use both).

Can't say I've ever had an issue with AD corruption or stuck obits, etc. Although eDir finally got stable around 8.something (can't remember which but it was truly horrific there for a while).

Note that NetWare USED to be rock-solid/stable.

Not to mention NSS issues vs. NTFS issues (way more problems with NSS in terms of performance, stability, and file integrity than I've seen with NTFS). And I've seen problems with NTFS before (once, a long long time ago with a specific support pack for NT 4.0). And I'm not counting Home Media Server from MS (although that was bad).
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Anonymous_User Absent Member.
Absent Member.

Re: Alt Support Suggestions.

We're in the same boat Brad...MS stuff is having issues (not as bad in
previous years though, to it is getting better...but once I got the botched
upgrade issues resolved our eDir and GW are rock solid. Our AD is too, but
we spent the time to design it from scratch, and not put our old domain
stuff into the mix.
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