Novell Ships ZENworks Brings New Ease of Use, Reliability to Windows Experience for Desktop Users
Articles and Tips: article
01 Jul 1998
Novell, Inc. recently added to its product-driven momentum with first customer shipments of ZENworks, a breakthrough desktop management tool and the latest in a series of new Novell solutions that leverage Novell's industry-leading NDS (Novell Directory Services) to make networks work for customers.
The directory-enabled power of ZENworks improves productivity for users of networked Windows PCs, enhancing reliability, improving Help Desk support, and making it faster and easier to access the full range of applications and resources on the network. In addition, ZENworks empowers network managers and other IT professionals with a range of new software management and distribution and desktop management and maintenance capabilities that simplify and reduce the total cost of maintaining Windows PCs on the network.
"ZENworks is a whole new way of management," said Michael Simpson, director of marketing for Novell. "The financial and human resource returns to businesses are enormous. It's not just about fixing problems, but making the PC and network experience seamless for users and thereby making the administrators' job easier."
Directory-Enabled Desktop Management
ZENworks simplifies the use of Windows-based PCs by leveraging NDS, the most mature and multi-functional directory service available today. With ZENworks, users automatically receive new and updated applications which have already been personalized with information stored in NDS. Additionally, when a user is working from another workstation and requests an application from a server, ZENworks launches the nearest copy of it, a capability unique to NDS that saves time for the user and bandwidth and money for the user's organization.
NDS moves the dependencies for running applications and accessing network services from the traditional PC, to the network, by providing a central trusted repository of information about the applications, equipment, policies and users that make up a computer network. User preferences, procedures and security rights are all maintained in NDS. This allows for dynamic application distribution and management as well as desktop management and maintenance.
Improving Life on the Network
"ZENworks has enabled us to provide our users with a seamless network interface, which most organizations are still striving to achieve," said Dan Tesenair, network engineer for Health First, a Florida healthcare provider. "The ability to manage the users' environments, workstations and applications from a central directory will prove to be a major cost savings for us by drastically decreasing the need for support staff at our 70 remote locations. We have estimated the annual cost savings to be in the millions."
Users are able to roam from one PC to another while maintaining their familiar interface and always having the network resources they require, such as printers and servers, readily available. When support is required, users need not answer technical questions about their profile or hardware configuration. Instead, the user simply selects the Help Request icon and an E-mail which includes workstation configuration and error messages that are stored in NDS, can be sent to the support person, ensuring accurate and timely support.
ZENworks eases network administration and management, enabling network managers to securely diagnose and solve software-related problems without visiting each networked computer. An Open Database Connectivity (ODBC) interface into NDS and a built-in data extraction tool are available allowing network managers to generate various types of reports, including simplified hardware inventory management. This is especially useful and time-saving when, for example, a network manager needs to determine the memory capacity of PCs before an application is distributed. Additionally, dynamic policies and procedures are automatically established and stored in NDS, making them easier to deploy and manage.
ZENworks is a Year 2000-compliant toolset and can be used to easily deploy other vendors' Year 2000 patches and upgrades. Also, ZENworkssupports Microsoft's desktop management initiatives such as ZAW (Zero Administration for Windows) and ZAK (Zero Administration Kit).
Pricing and availability
ZENworks is available at a cost of $39 per user MSRP. To order, contact your authorized Novell reseller or call 1-800-NETWARE. Additional information on ZENworks is available on Novell's Web site at http://www.novell.com/products/nds/zen works.
ZENworks is free to existing ManageWise customers who have maintenance contracts with Novell. In addition, a ZENworks Starter Pack will be available, free of charge, for all current NDS users, later this year. The Starter Pack includes all functionality currently available in Novell's Application Launcher (NAL) and Workstation Manager products. The full ZENworks functionality must be purchased separately. ZENworks supports users running Windows 3.x, Windows 95 and Windows NT operating systems.
Novell's ZENworks, Zero Effort Networks for users, is the first directory services based desktop management tool. ZENworks makes using Windows-based desktops easier for end users and reduces the cost of owning networked PCs through NDS and policy-enabled application distribution, desktop management and workstation maintenance. ZENworks removes barriers to user productivity and allows network administrators to leverage NDS to insure the user is focused on business, not technology. With self-healing application delivery, desktops customized for the users needs and easy problem resolution, ZENworks makes the network effortless for the user.
ZENworks Industry Support
"Overall, ZENworks is another in a continuing series of encouraging signs from Novell. ZENworks requires a commitment to NDS, and so will appeal primarily to existing NetWare 4.x customers. But it will also help Novell build a more credible case for the NetWare 5.0 upgrade and in its continuing battle with Microsoft. Because it leverages NDS, ZENworks proves the concept that directory services will be an essential enabler of more effective management tools."
Jamie Lewis, Burton Group; Novell ZENworks, March 26, 1998
"ZENworks aims at reducing total cost of ownership by providing users with access to their customized desktops and applications, enabling electronic software distribution and providing help-desk tools to reduce the amount of dispatched support. Many enterprises committed to NDS should find this product compelling."
Neil MacDonald, Gartner Group; Who Will Find Inner Peace with Novell's ZENworks? March 4, 1998
"ZENworks promises to be the best of both worlds to Novell network administrators: administrative control of user dependencies and applications and the potential for a major reduction in the number of desktop visits by technicians."
Bill Peterson, IDC; ZENworks: Will it Enlighten Novell's Direction?, March 1998
"ZENworks definitely demonstrates proof of concept and gets [Novell] out to market a good six months ahead of Microsoft."
Rick Villars, IDC; InfoWorld, Novell's ZENworks Aims to Boost NDS Manageability, February 11, 1998
"Existing Novell users should exploit NetWare, NDS, and ZENworks for management, supplementing with NT and Unix application servers."
Dave Cearley, META Group; A Simpler Novel[l] Approach, March 30, 1998
"Novell's ZENworks (Zero Effort Networks) jumps into the total cost of ownership (TCO) ring with the goal of pummeling Microsoft's ZAW (Zero Administration for Windows) initiative. ZENworks, which is currently in beta release and scheduled for second quarter shipment, has the potential of becoming a serious contender for the TCO championship belt."
Christopher Carrigan, Summit Strategies, Novell's ZENworks Takes on Microsoft's ZAW, February 19, 1998
"Combined with enterprise management tools such as Compaq Insight Manager, ZENworks helps to provide seamless desktop management for network administrators. ZENworks also leverages the tight integration between Novell Directory Services and Compaq servers for greater ease of deployment."
Steve Kirchoff, vice president of management solutions; Compaq Computer Corporation
"ZENworks is a really cool product. The ability to manage our NT workstations through NDS is a big plus. With ZENworks we no longer need to manage .POL files on multiple servers. Instead we use NWAdmin and store the information in NDS. The ability to remotely control a workstation will enable us to remotely diagnose problems without having to travel to other buildings."
James E. Drews, network administrator; Computer Aided Engineering Center of the University of Wisconsin, Madison
"In the short time this product has been in use, ZENworks has brought more power, control, and ease of use to our organization than is possible with any other suite of desktop management tools on the market today. It will continue to leverage the support model that Health First has adopted into the 21st century."
Mark Amey, director of technology services; Health First, Inc.
"ZENworks is an immediate win for customers because it appeals to the desktop user, the administrator and the executive, which will make ZENworks easy to sell. It delivers an immediate return on investment by making the network easier to use for the end-user and saving the network administrator's time. We expect ZENworks to be the cornerstone of a lot of business for us. As a reseller, we are looking to implement business solutions for our large enterprise clients, and it is unusual to find a product, or even a suite of products, that encompasses all the desktop and application management functions found in ZENworks. Plus, most of our customers have invested in a directory and ZENworks is the first product that illustrates the value of that investment."
Jon Freeman, president; Mycroft
"Based on our previous success with the Novell Application Launcher, we hope to further enhance our enterprise network with ZENworks. We have over 15,000 workstations at more than 50 sites and since we are always short on personnel resources, ZENworks will make it easier to manage our Windows- based desktops and provide us with a user-friendly, reliable network."
Judy Hays, instructional network engineer; Plano Independent School District
"ZENworks provides us with the flexibility our roaming doctors need. It is just the type of product we have been asking for because it will give us the ability to manage our desktops more easily and distinguish between users and workstations. Overall, it is a powerful product with added benefits, like remote control and inventory management and it will help us fulfill our Year 2000 requirements."
David Hasselbach of the University of Michigan Medical Center
* Originally published in Novell AppNotes
The origin of this information may be internal or external to Novell. While Novell makes all reasonable efforts to verify this information, Novell does not make explicit or implied claims to its validity.