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Novell Announces NetWare Mobile

Articles and Tips: article

01 Feb 1996

Provides Integrated Client Environment and Remote Access

Novell has announced NetWare Mobile, the first client software that enables mobile users to access their NetWare networks, anywhere in the world, whether they are remotely connected to the network or working offline. With NetWare Mobile, users can transfer selected network data to mobile computers and then automatically update and synchronize files when they reconnect to the network. NetWare Mobile provides mobile users with their familiar view of network files and resources, even when disconnected.

NetWare Mobile also offers a sophisticated dialer and graphical configuration utilities that make it easy for mobile users to dial into NetWare networks. In addition, NetWare Mobile provides advanced administration utilities, including integration with NetWare Directory Services (NDS), that make mobile network computing secure and manageable for organizations of all sizes.

When used with NetWare Connect, Novell's scalable communications server for secure remote access, customers have a comprehensive remote access and mobile networking solution.

"For mobile users, connecting to the network while traveling has sometimes been impractical," said Tom Steding, vice president and general manager of Novell's Communications Infrastructure Division. "NetWare Mobile changes all that by creating a virtual NetWare network on your portable computer. Now our customers can work with their familiar network environments, whether they are in a hotel room, in the middle of the desert, or in an airliner at 30,000 feet."

NetWare Mobile has gained strong support from vendors of mobile products. "Business people need to get access to their corporate data from wherever they are. As they become more mobile, access to their network is a must," said Bengt Carlstrom, General Manager, Mobile Data Terminals at Ericsson Mobile Communications AB. "Ericsson's broad line of wireless data products with NetWare Mobile provide an easy, cost effective, flexible and powerful reason for customers to deploy mobile networking solutions," he added.

The Mobile Opportunity Today, more than 50 million computer users have access to NetWare LANs, according to International Data Corporation (IDC). In a January 1995 survey by Giga Information Group, they estimate that out of a worldwide workforce of 870 million, some 165 million can be classified as mobile professionals. Further, Giga findings show that an increasing number of these mobile professionals need to continue to be productive and have access to corporate data no matter where they are.

True Data Mobility for Mobile Networking With NetWare Mobile, mobile professionals can "take the network along" for consistent access to NetWare resources, whether they are directly connected to the LAN, remotely connected via dial-up, or not connected at all. Providing mobile users with a consistent work environment can reduce training and support costs.

Mobile users can work with their network files even in situations such as on an airplane, when they are not physically connected to the network. When the user reconnects to the network, mobile files are synchronized with the network to keep all files up-to-date. To reduce remote connection costs, NetWare Mobile updates only the parts of the files that have been changed. NetWare Mobile also enables users to order print jobs while offline by saving them in a deferred print queue. The print jobs are stored in the queue until the user reconnects to the network and requests the printing to an available printer at that location.

Sophisticated Location Management NetWare Mobile includes graphical configuration utilities, or Location Profiles, to help users store and manage network connections from different locations, such as dialing conventions, connection media, and calling card support. Location Profiles save customers time and effort, eliminating the need to memorize connection details or reconfigure the dialer every time. Selective driver loading saves memory, because only the drivers needed for a specific location will be loaded upon startup.

In addition, NetWare Mobile's advanced dialer makes it easy for users to initiate dial-up connections anywhere without having to know the dialing convention for each area.

A Secure, Manageable Environment NetWare Mobile provides security features to protect the mobile network from unauthorized access. Users must provide authentication information on startup and are allowed only the access privileges they would normally have from their desktop connections. Optional data encryption offers additional security.

NetWare Mobile includes administration and management tools that make it easy for network administrators to support and administer mobile users. A snap-in module to the NetWare 4.1 NWAdmin tool allows administrators to support mobile users and distribute configuration and file updates through NDS. Administrators can create mobile file groups-logically organized groups of commonlyshared files-that users can replicate in a single operation. They can also create preconfigured remote access points to populate users' phone books, making it easier for them to dial in.

Pricing and Availability NetWare Mobile, due to ship within a month, is available in the following license configurations: single-user for $129; 5-user for $495; 25-user for $1,995 and 100-user for $6,995. The initial release of NetWare Mobile supports NetWare 4.1 and 3.x networks as well as the Windows 3.1 client operating system. Novell intends to support NetWare customers as they migrate to other popular client operating systems, including Windows 95.

NetWare Mobile is a key component of Novell's strategy to enable the Smart Global Network by extending networks beyond traditional PC LANs to connect mobile computers and a broad range of intelligent devices.

* Originally published in Novell AppNotes


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