Small Businesses Measure Up With Novell Small Business Suite 5.1
Articles and Tips: article
01 Aug 2000
As a networking professional, you undoubtedly spend some of your precious spare time as an IT consultant, installing and managing networks for other companies. In fact, you probably perform the bulk of your services for small businesses. According to David Hunt, a product manager for Novell, the vast majority of small businesses relies on IT professionals like you to install and maintain their networks.
"Small businesses typically do not have a dedicated IT person who's going to take care of their installation for them," Hunt points out. Instead, most small businesses "outsource network installation, and often its administration and maintenance, to a consultant."
In most cases, small businesses don't ask you to install network software that they've preselected. On the contrary, most small businesses want you to understand their particular situation well enough to choose the network software that best suits their needs.
The majority of small businesses need a network that meets the following criteria:
The network must be reliable.
The network must be easy to manage.
The network must be inexpensive to install and maintain.
The person to whom a small business gives the responsibility of overseeing its network on a day-to-day basis often has the expertise to perform only the most elementary management tasks, such as rebooting the server if it goes down. Furthermore this person probably doesn't have the background or the inclination to learn to use feature-rich, but complex, administrative tools. Consequently, these businesses require networks that are virtually problem free and easy to manage.
In addition, most small businesses "don't have a multimillion dollar budget set aside for computers, software, and network infrastructure," as large businesses often do, Hunt observes. If a small business is installing or upgrading a network, the price of that network is "coming out of the boss' pocket." Therefore, small businesses generally need cost-effective networks.
Not coincidentally, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 meets all of these needs, and more. Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is a suite of Novell and third-party products that Novell assembled specifically to meet the needs of small and growing businesses.
Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is reliable, easy to manage, and inexpensive. In addition, Novell includes easy installation features that can save you time when you set up a Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 network. Novell also includes an impressive assortment of applications that you can install for these businesses at no additional cost for software.
In fact, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is part of Novell's family of Net services software, which is designed to eliminate the boundaries between company intranets, extranets, and the Internet--a vision Novell calls one Net. The components of Novell Small Business Suite 5.1, each of which are discussed in this article, work together to help small businesses realize this one Net vision. For example, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes components that simplify the complexities of network management and secure small businesses' networks from threats both inside and outside of their businesses. In addition, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 features several components that will help small businesses accelerate their transition to a successful e-business.
NETWARE 5.1 HITS THE SUITE SPOT
The foundation of Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is the NetWare operating system, which, as you know, is the hallmark of reliability. As Hunt points out, NetWare "is just a workhorse." In fact, NetWare recently "took top honors" in the 2000 Computer Reseller News (CRN) Champions Survey. Not surprisingly, "Novell's greatest margin of victory" in this survey "was in product quality and reliability." (See "Product Quality Earns Novell NOS Lead," Computer Reseller News , June 16, 2000. You can find this article at http://www.crn.com/special/champs/champs.asp?ArticleID=17587.)
As you might guess, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is based on NetWare 5.1, the latest version of the NetWare operating system, and includes all of the features in NetWare 5.1. For example, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes the following features:
NetWare Management Portal
IBM WebSphere Application Server 3.0 for NetWare
Oracle8i for NetWare
ZENworks Starter Pack
Being Novell Small Business Suite 5.1
If you've seen the critically acclaimed film "Being John Malkovich," you can compare NetWare Management Portal to the fictional portal on which "Being John Malkovich" is based. The film is about a portal that transports people into actor John Malkovich's consciousness. These people can then see what John Malkovich sees, hear what he hears, and in some cases, control his thoughts and actions.
Similarly, NetWare Management Portal is an electronic portal that enables you to see inside a Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 server and control the processes running on that server. A browser-based management tool that uses NetWare 5.1's native support for HTTP, NetWare Management Portal enables you to manage a Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 server from a remote location.
You can use NetWare Management Portal from anywhere you have an Internet connection. You simply launch your browser and type the URL of the Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 server you want to manage.
As a result, you can use NetWare Management Portal to perform network diagnostic and management tasks that are beyond the capabilities of most small business personnel--without having to leave your office. For example, you can use NetWare Management Portal to monitor the health of Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 servers, check those servers' memories, check the status of server processes, and load and unload NetWare Loadable Modules (NLMs). (For more information about NetWare Management Portal, see the "A Portal to Browser-Based Management" section in "Upcoming NetWare Game Highlights," NetWare Connection , Nov. 1999, pp. 8-12.)
Serving Up E-Business Applications
According to a U.S. government report published in 1999, less than one-third of the small businesses that have web sites use those web sites to conduct e-business. This report concludes that "as larger companies integrate e-commerce into their business, small firms run the risk of being excluded if they are unable to establish strong e-commerce ties with others in their supply chains." (See "5. Small Business and the Internet" in the "Progress on the Presidential Directives" section of Towards Digital eQuality: The U.S. Government Working Group on Electronic Commerce , 2nd Annual Report, 1999. You can download this report from http://www.ecommerce.gov/usdocume.htm.)
Among other things, this report recognizes that many small businesses lack the technical expertise to implement e-business applications. As an IT professional, you can help your small business customers understand the benefits of e-business, such as the benefits of using an electronic business-to-business (B2B) purchasing system to obtain needed materials at reduced prices. You can also provide the technical expertise to set up the e-business system that makes the most sense for your small business customers.
Whether this e-business system entails installing business-to-consumer (B2C) or B2B applications, you can install those applications on WebSphere Application Server 3.0 for NetWare, Standard Edition, a Java-based web application server. You can use WebSphere Application Server to offload web applications that require significant computing power--such as applications that access databases--from the web server. By using WebSphere Application Server to offload computing-intensive web applications, you can free up the web server to do what it does best: serve web pages to requesting browsers. (For more information about WebSphere Application Server, see "WebSphere Application Server," NetWare Connection , Dec. 1999, pp. 6-22.)
When you set up an e-business system, you probably have to create a database for e-business applications to use. Fortunately, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes a five-user version of Oracle8i. As the "i" suggests, Oracle8i is an Internet-enabled database that supports e-business applications, including applications that run on WebSphere Application Server.
In addition to being Internet-enabled, Oracle8i is fully integrated with NetWare and NDS eDirectory. As a result, you can set up e-business applications that authenticate users to both Oracle8i and NDS with the same login. You can also set access controls for these users in eDirectory. These e-business applications can then retrieve information users are authorized to access in Oracle8i.
Oracle8i also contains a specialized internal Java Virtual Machine (JVM) that can execute Java code within the Oracle8i database. Executing data-driven processes within the database can improve the efficiency of any network--regardless of its size--because applications don't have to extract large amounts of data from the database and then perform computations on that data. Instead, the code that performs these computations can be stored and executed inside the database, where this code has easy access to the required data. Web applications then only need to extract the result of those computations. (For more information about Oracle8i, see "The Oracle Sees All" section in "Managing Multiple Databases," NetWare Connection , Oct. 1999, p. 28.)
ZEN and the Art of Small Business Administration
Even though the Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 server you install for a small business may never go down, this business may still require network support from time to time. For example, a small business may want to upgrade network printers and print drivers or office productivity software, such as Word or WordPerfect.
Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes ZENworks Starter Pack--an entry-level version of Novell's ZENworks for Desktops management tool. By virtue of its integration with NDS eDirectory, ZENworks for Desktops simplifies the task of upgrading software on multiple workstations. Instead of walking to each workstation, you can use ZENworks for Desktops to distribute and install or upgrade software.
For example, if you want to install or upgrade WordPerfect on users' workstations, you create an Application object, create the configuration settings for WordPerfect, and then associate the Application object with the appropriate User objects. Then when users log in to the network, ZENworks for Desktops distributes WordPerfect to users' desktops, and it is installed in the manner you have specified.
With ZENworks for Desktops, you can also control the appearance of users' desktops. Because ZENworks for Desktops stores this information in NDS eDirectory, users see the same desktop no matter what workstation they use to log in to the network.
In addition, ZENworks for Desktops protects you from user errors. For example, if a user accidentally deletes important application files, ZENworks for Desktops can detect which files are missing or corrupted and download them to the workstation. The problem is automatically solved when the user logs in to the network, and the user doesn't have to call you. (For more information about ZENworks for Desktops, visit http://www.novell.com/products/zenworks/desktops. See also "ZENworks 2: Managing Applications and Desktops Through NDS," NetWare Connection , June 1999, pp. 36-41. )
A Directory Tailored forSmall Businesses
Like NetWare 5.1, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes both Novell Directory Services (NDS) 7 and NDS eDirectory. (For more information about why both versions are included, see "Two Heads Are Better Than One.") When bundled with Novell Small Business Suite 5.1, however, NDS eDirectory limits the number of users who can be simultaneously logged in to the network to 50 (the number of concurrent user licenses that Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 supports). Hunt explains, "Novell Small Business Suite targets small and growing businesses at a single site with 50 concurrent users on the network or less."
In addition, because Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 supports single-site networks, the NDS eDirectory that ships with Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 supports only one NDS tree. To support growth in small businesses, however, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 supports multiple servers in the same NDS tree.
Aside from these few differences, the NDS eDirectory that ships with Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is the same NDS eDirectory that ships with NetWare 5.1. That is, like the NDS eDirectory that ships with NetWare 5.1, the NDS eDirectory that ships with Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is extensible and can scale to more than one billion objects. Granted, a small business network that is limited to one eDirectory tree and 50 concurrent users probably doesn't need a billion-object capacity.
Regardless of the number of objects it contains, however, eDirectory can still help this business manage users and other network resources. In addition, eDirectory's jumbo capacity can come in handy if that business wants to implement an e-business system.
For example, you can extend the NDS schema in Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 to enable a small business to securely store private information about its customers, such as customers' past purchases, shipping addresses, billing addresses, and credit card information. You can then install an e-business application on the WebSphere Application Server that accesses this information each time a customer accesses that business's e-business system. In other words, you can use eDirectory to help small businesses manage their internal networks and their e-business systems as one Net.
In addition to all the features of NetWare 5.1, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes features and software that Novell either created or selected with you and small businesses in mind. For example, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes a simplified installation option--called the Standard installation option --that allows you to install a new server quickly.
According to Hunt, Novell has thoroughly researched the installation requirements of small businesses and has incorporated this research into the default settings of the Standard installation option. To install Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 using the Standard installation option, you "just need to supply several items of basic information," that are specific to the small business for which you are installing a network, Hunt says. For example, you need to supply the time zone in which the small business resides and the name of that business. (Novell has also researched other requirements of small businesses, such as language requirements. For information about how Novell has put this research to use in Novell Small Business Suite 5.1, see "Speak My Language!")
The Standard installation option then uses the name of the small business to name the Organizational Unit (OU). By default, this name is also used for the NDS tree and the server. If you want, however, you can change selected default settings, including the names of the OU, server, and tree. (The ability to change these default names in the Standard installation option is new with Novell Small Business Suite 5.1. For a list of features and products that are new or have been updated for Novell Small Business Suite 5.1, see "New and Improved.")
Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 also includes the Advanced installation option, which allows you to customize the server installation. You should use the Advanced installation option in the following circumstances:
You want to upgrade a network to Novell Small Business Suite 5.1.
You want to change default settings that the Standard installation option does not allow you to change.
Regardless of whether you choose the Advanced or Standard installation option, if you need help installing Novell Small Business Suite 5.1, help is just a telephone call away. Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes free telephone support for installation from Novell Technical Support (NTS) during normal business hours. (For information about this free support, see "New and Improved.")
NICE AND NEAT
Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes NetWare Easy Administration Tool (NEAT), a management tool designed especially for networking novices. NEAT provides a simple GUI that networking novices can use to perform everyday management functions, such as creating User objects, deleting User objects, or creating Group objects. (See Figure 1.)
Figure 1: Networking novices can use NEAT to perform everyday tasks, such as adding and deleting NDS User objects and GroupWise accounts.
NEAT runs on Windows 2000, NT, 98, and 95 workstations that are also running Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 client software. (Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 client software runs on 32-bit Windows 2000, NT, 98, 95, and 3.1x workstations and is included with Novell Small Business Suite 5.1. You can also download Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 client software for Macintosh and OS/2 from http://www.novell.com/download.)
The first time you log in to the network as the administrator from a Windows 2000, NT, 98, or 95 workstation, NEAT automatically launches and displays a Quick Setup Tasks menu. From this menu, you can select the tasks you need to perform to set up the network. (See Figure 2.) For example, you can use the Quick Setup Tasks menu to set up network printers.
Figure 2: When you select a task from the Quick Setup Tasks menu, NEAT launches a wizard that helps you complete that task.
Of course, you can also use the network management applications with which you are familiar to set up the network. Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes both the NetWare Administrator (NWADMIN) utility and ConsoleOne. After you set up the network, you can then train an employee of the small business to use NEAT to complete simple management tasks.
The Quick Setup Tasks menu in NEAT also gives you access to Novell Internet Connection Expert (NICE). NICE uses the INETCFG utility and information that you supply to simplify the process of setting up Internet access for small businesses. (See Figure 3.) The INETCFG utility enables you to select and configure internetworking devices and protocols--such as IP and IPX--on a NetWare 5.1 server. (For more information about the INETCFG utility, visit http://www.novell.com/documentation/lg/nw51/docui/index.html#../utlrfenu/data/hnbvotqk.html.)
Figure 3: NICE is a wizard that simplifies the process of setting up an Internet connection for your small business customers.
NICE supports the following connection devices: modems, Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN), and Digital Subscriber Line (DSL). You can also use NICE to set up modem connections using FatPipe from Ragula Systems Inc. FatPipe runs on Windows NT and 95 workstations and enables these workstations to combine up to four telephone lines or two ISDN lines into a single high-speed Internet connection. Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes a two-user version of FatPipe. (To obtain more licenses, contact Ragula Systems at http://www.fatpipeinc.com.)
WELL-CONNECTED AND THEN SOME
If you are setting up Internet access for a small business, you can also install GroupWise 5.5, Novell's groupware solution, to help that business make the most of its Internet access. GroupWise 5.5 includes the Web Access agent, a Common Gateway Interface (CGI), which enables users to access GroupWise e-mail over the Internet using their browser. With GroupWise Web Access, users can also access other GroupWise features, such as the GroupWise address book and calendar, from their browser. (For more information about GroupWise Web Access, including information about how to install GroupWise Web Access, visit http://www.novell.com/documentation/lg/gw55/gw55wa/data/a20gkue.html.)
The GroupWise messaging system uses the Internet agent to extend e-mail services to the Internet. The Internet agent is an NLM that converts outgoing messages from the message format that GroupWise uses to the Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions (MIME) message format that the Internet uses. (MIME is an Internet standard messaging format.) The Internet agent also reverses this process for incoming messages.
In addition, the Internet agent supports Simple Mail Transfer Protocol (SMTP), the Internet-standard protocol that carries e-mail messages over the Internet. The Internet agent also supports Internet-standard protocols that enable users to read their e-mail messages, such as Post Office Protocol 3 (POP3) and Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP).
You can install the Internet Agent along with GroupWise messaging, calendaring, scheduling, and task management software simply by selecting GroupWise on the Quick Setup Tasks menu in NEAT. When you select GroupWise, NEAT launches a wizard that simplifies the installation and setup of GroupWise.
This wizard first asks you to insert the GroupWise CD that comes with Novell Small Business Suite 5.1. When you insert the CD, the wizard then asks whether or not you are upgrading from a previous version of GroupWise.
After you answer this question, the wizard presents you with a series of questions that has pre-populated answers for you to review. For the easiest possible installation, Hunt suggests that you accept these answers (by selecting "Next") and keep the wizard's default settings.
The wizard also copies GroupWise client software to the Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 server and creates a Network Application Launcher (NAL) object for each user. ZENworks Starter Pack can then use these predefined NAL objects to set up the GroupWise client software on each user's workstation.
Furthermore, when you use the Quick Setup Tasks menu in NEAT to install GroupWise, NEAT integrates GroupWise management tasks with NDS and Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 management tasks. This integration makes it easy for networking novices to perform routine maintenance of GroupWise accounts. For example, when you use NEAT to create a User object in NDS, NEAT automatically creates a GroupWise account for that user.
Although Denial of Service (DoS) attacks on well-known businesses such as eBay and Yahoo receive a lot of media attention, even small businesses are vulnerable to DoS and other types of attacks. If you set up Internet access for a small business--particularly if you set up an e-business system for that business--you should protect that business from outside attacks.
For example, you may recommend that a small business install a firewall to protect its e-business system from unauthorized access by outsiders, such as competitors. (According to Information Security's 1999 Security Survey , the number of unauthorized access attacks by outsiders almost doubled from 1998 to 1999. See "Got Security?" Information Security , July 1999. You can download this article from http://www.infosecuritymag.com/july99/cover.htm.)
Fortunately, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes a full-service version of the Firewall Services in BorderManager Enterprise Edition 3.5. (Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes an evaluation license for other BorderManager Enterprise Edition 3.5 components, such as Virtual Private Network [VPN] services.) In other words, for the cost of your services alone, a small business customer can set up an International Computer Security Association (ICSA)-approved firewall to protect an e-business system.
Depending on the type of e-business system you install for a small business, and therefore the type of firewall that best meets that business' security needs, you can use BorderManager to set up one or more firewall services. For example, you can set up packet filtering services that can help protect a business' web server from a common type of DoS attack that pummels web servers with requests to initiate communications.
You can also set up proxy services that hide a business' Internet address from packet-sniffing devices. Hiding this address can protect the business' system from unauthorized access attacks by outsiders. (For more information about the Firewall Services available with BorderManager Enterprise Edition 3.5, visit http://www.novell.com/bordermanager/firewall/details.html. For more information about firewall technologies, see "Great Walls of Fire," NetWare Connection , Jan. 1997, pp. 6-28. )
THREE'S A CHARM
Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 also includes products from third-party vendors that you can install for just the cost of your time. For example, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes the following products:
VirusScan and NetShield from Network Associates
FaxWare 6 from Tobit Software
Pervasive.SQL 2000 from Pervasive Software
In addition, Novell plans to add more third-party software and services for Novell Small Business Suite 5.1. For up-to-the-minute information about third-party products and services for Novell Small Business Suite 5.1, visit http://www.novell.com/customers/smallbusiness and click NSBS Partner Sites. By clicking the democity link on Novell's small business home page, you can test drive selected third-party products.
Not for Bug Lovers
In addition to hacker attacks, all networks are vulnerable to virus attacks. For example, 77 percent of those who responded to Information Security's 1999 Security Survey said their business experienced a computer virus outbreak in 1998-99. (See "Got Security?")
To help you protect your small business customers, Novell includes the latest versions of VirusScan and NetShield for NetWare Servers in Novell Small Business Suite 5.1. As a result, your small business customers won't have to pay extra for the virus-scanning software they need.
VirusScan protects workstations from virus outbreaks by scanning files as users access them. VirusScan also includes e-mail X-ray, virus-scanning software that scans unopened e-mail attachments for viruses such as the recent Love Bug virus. (For more information about VirusScan, visit http://www.mcafeeb2b.com.)
NetShield for NetWare Servers detects and cleans files that are stored on the server as users access those files. NetShield also includes several virus-alert options. For example, you can configure NetShield to alert you by e-mail or pager if your small business customer experiences a virus outbreak. (For more information about NetShield for NetWare Servers, visit http://www.mcafeeb2b.com.)
In addition, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes a six-month subscription to downloads that Network Associates makes available for detecting and cleaning new viruses. At the end of this free six-month subscription, your customers can purchase an annual subscription to these downloads from Network Associates.
Just the Fax
Although e-mail is widely used for business communications, businesses still prefer to transmit and receive documents by fax according to Charles Nguyen-Huu, marketing and communications director for Tobit Software. "Fax connects businesses to a wider world than any other medium can," says Nguyen-Huu. For example, Nguyen-Huu explains, "a small automobile repair business that doesn't have Internet access would probably request a fax to get information about automotive parts."
The recent winners of the State Small Business Persons of the Year awards from the U.S. Small Business Administration reinforce Nguyen-Huu's statement. A questionnaire submitted by this year's winners reveals that 88 percent of the award-winning small businesses use fax machines, and 100 percent use computers. (See "SBA's 53 State Small Business Winners: Fast-Paced Growth Typifies Diverse and Innovative Group." You can download the May 23, 2000, press release from http://www.sba.gov/news/indexheadline.html.)
These figures suggest that many of your small business customers will be pleased to learn that you can set up fax capabilities on their networks using software that is included with Novell Small Business Suite 5.1: FaxWare 6. Using FaxWare, these businesses can use computers to reduce the costs of traditional faxing. For example, small businesses can save on paper, toner, fax machines, and fax-machine maintenance costs.
Small businesses can also decrease the time it takes to send and retrieve fax documents while simultaneously increasing employee productivity. FaxWare enables users to fax documents directly from applications running on their workstations, rather than from printed versions of these documents. In other words, instead of printing documents and then faxing these documents from a central fax machine, users can send and receive faxes at their workstations.
FaxWare is also inherently more secure than a fax machine. With a centrally located fax machine, confidential faxes can accumulate where anyone who passes by can read them. With FaxWare, faxes are sent directly to the desktop of the recipient. Furthermore, FaxWare is integrated with NDS eDirectory. As a result, only an authenticated user--that is, the intended recipient--can access these faxes.
FaxWare includes a server component, which you can install on a Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 server, and a client component, which you can install on Windows 2000, NT, 98, or 95 workstations. (FaxWare is based on a client-server architecture.) The client component is a GUI that allows users to access, view, annotate, and send faxes. (See Figure 4.)
Figure 4: FaxWare Client software enables users to access, view, and send faxes.
These components include various configuration options that you can implement for small businesses, depending on the needs of those businesses. (For more information about FaxWare configuration options, see "Enumerating the Fax.")
A Place for Everything
Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 also includes a server evaluation license and two user licenses for Pervasive.SQL 2000. As Hunt explains, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 uses Pervasive.SQL 2000 to store internal data, and because Novell includes a server and two user licenses, you can install business applications that also use Pervasive.SQL 2000 for your small business customers. (For more information about Pervasive.SQL 2000, visit http://www.pervasive.com/products/psql.)
For example, Pervasive.SQL 2000 works with several popular accounting packages, such as Epicor Platinum for Windows and Great Plains Accounting software. Epicor Platinum for Windows uses software running on users' workstations (Windows NT 4.0, 98, and 95) and software running on Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 servers to access accounting information stored in a Pervasive.SQL 2000 database. (For more information about Epicor Platinum for Windows, visit http://www.epicor.com/solutions/pfw.)
Great Plains Accounting software also uses software running on a Windows workstation (Windows NT and 95) and software running on a Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 server to access a Pervasive.SQL 2000 database, which stores accounting information. (For more information about Great Plains Accounting software, visit http://www.gps.com/accounting.)
BIG VALUE, SMALL PRICE
How much can small businesses expect to pay for the abundance of features and third-party software that come with Novell Small Business Suite 5.1? Surprisingly little. Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 retails for just U.S. $1,295 for a server and five user connections.
Small businesses get "over $4,000 of software for $1,295, so the value is incredible for small and growing businesses," Hunt exclaims. (See "The Sum Is Less Than Its Parts.") Furthermore, Novell offers per-user licensing, which allows small businesses to add user connections one at a time at the same per-user cost as multiuser licenses. In addition, these additive licenses are good for most of the software that comes with Novell Small Business Suite 5.1.
For example, an additional one-user Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 license includes a one-user license for GroupWise, VirusScan, and FaxWare. In other words, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is priced to sell itself and to sell small businesses on your IT acumen. Instead of paying you for support calls, as small businesses do with less reliable server operating systems, these businesses can spend their IT dollars to have you set up additional services, such as e-business systems, virus protection, and faxing services.
A BIG FUTURE FOR INSTALLING SMALL BUSINESS NETWORKS
If you've ever dreamed of quitting your day job to become a full-time consultant, you may be encouraged to know that the number of small businesses--and hence your potential customers--is growing steadily. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, "new business formation reached another record level in 1998." (See "Small Business 'Vital Statistics.'" You download this document from http://www.sba.gov/aboutsba.)
Many of these businesses, says Aida Alvarez, of the U.S. Small Business Administration, are "using technology to help level the playing field." (See "New Tools for the New Millennium," Apr. 3, 2000. You can download this speech from http://www.sba.gov/news/speeches/mainstreet.html.) Many of these businesses will be calling networking professionals like you to implement that technology.
With Novell Small Business Suite 5.1, you can help these small businesses "level the playing field" by using the same technologies to build small business networks that enterprise-scale businesses use--at a fraction of the cost that big businesses have to pay for these technologies. A playing field can't get much more level than that.
WE WANT YOUR FEEDBACK
NetWare Connection doesn't often feature Novell Small Business Suite. We need to know if this article provided useful information for you. Write and tell us if you are installing this product for small businesses and tell us if you would like to see more articles about the product in future issues of NetWare Connection. Send an e-mail message to firstname.lastname@example.org or send a fax to 801-228-4576. The first 20 readers we hear from will receive a coveted "Save the Net" T-shirt.
Cheryl Walton works for Niche Associates, which is located in Sandy, Utah.
Two Heads Are Better Than One
Why does Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 ship with both Novell Directory Services (NDS) 7 and NDS eDirectory? Novell supplies these two versions of NDS to facilitate upgrades. Specifically, Novell includes NDS 7 to give you an option if you need to update versions of NDS that are too old to be updated to NDS eDirectory.
You can upgrade a NetWare 5, 4, or 3 server to Novell Small Business Suite 5.1. You can also upgrade previous versions of Novell Small Business Suite, such as intraNetWare for Small Business, NetWare for Small Business 4.11 and 4.2, and Novell Small Business Suite 5.
Depending upon from which version of NetWare or Novell Small Business Suite you are upgrading, the installation program for Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 either prepares and upgrades the NDS tree to NDS 7 or NDS eDirectory, or installs NDS eDirectory. (For more information about how the installation program for NetWare 5.1 facilitates NDS upgrades, see the "Need to Upgrade NDS? NetWare 5.1 Can Help" sidebar on p. 12 of "Upcoming NetWare Game Highlights," NetWare Connection , Nov. 1999, pp. 8-16. )
Speak My Language!
Because small businesses exist in every country in the world, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is available in the languages that these businesses are likely to need. In addition to English, Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is available in the following languages:
Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is also released as NetWare for Growing Business 5.1, which is licensed in Asia. NetWare for Growing Business is available in Simplified and Traditional Chinese and in Korean.
When you purchase Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 in a given language, the printed documentation in the box comes in that language, as do the user interfaces.
New and Improved
The following features are new or have been updated for Novell Small Business Suite 5.1:
NetWare 5.1. Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is based on NetWare 5.1 and includes all of the features that are included in NetWare 5.1, such as IBM WebSphere Application Server 3.0 for NetWare, Standard Edition. (The previous version of Novell Small Business Suite was based on NetWare 5.0.)
Updated GUI for Installation. Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 features an updated GUI for server installation.
Online Help System. Among other things, the updated installation GUI supports a new online help system that is available as you progress through the Standard installation. (This help system runs from the Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 CD.)
Modification Options for Standard Installation. You can now modify the following default settings when you choose the Standard installation option:
Upgrade or New Install. If the standard installation program detects a NetWare partition on the server, you are given two options: You can upgrade the existing server operating system to Novell Small Business Suite 5.1, or you can delete the partition and install Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 from scratch.
Create a New DOS Partition. You can create a new DOS partition and determine its size, or you can use an existing partition.
Server and Tree Names. By default, the standard installation program names the NDS tree and server object after the business for which you are installing Novell Small Business Suite 5.1. For example, if the name of the business is Novell, the standard installation program names the NDS server object NOVELL_SVR and names the NDS tree NOVELL_TREE by default. However, you can change these default names.
Multiple partition names and sizes
Free Support. Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 includes free installation support for the Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 operating system (NetWare 5.1). You can access this free support via telephone during regular business hours. This free support also includes help for the following: setting up an Internet connection (not including the Internet Service Provider [ISP] connection) and Internet e-mail messaging for GroupWise 5.5 (not including the ISP connection). (For more information about Novell technical support options, visit http://support.novell.com.)
Firewall Services in BorderManager Enterprise Edition 3.5. Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is the first version of Novell Small Business Suite to include the Firewall Services in BorderManager Enterprise Edition 3.5, which includes updated proxy and caching services. (BorderManager Enterprise Edition FastCache 3.0 was included with Novell Small Business Suite 5.0.)
Updated Versions of VirusScan and NetShield. Network Associates' VirusScan and NetShield virus-scanning software include the most recent .DAT files. (.DAT files identify virus signature patterns and are updated as new viruses are introduced.)
Updated Version of FaxWare. Tobit's FaxWare software has been updated to version 6 in Novell Small Business Suite 5.1. (Novell Small Business Suite 5 included FaxWare 5.11)
Documentation CD. Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 is the first version of Novell Small Business Suite to include a documentation CD in the box.
Enumerating the Fax
Tobit FaxWare 6 supports several hardware configurations that can help you customize faxing operations for your small business customers. For example, FaxWare supports the following fax hardware:
Class 2 and 2.0 Fax Modems. You can configure Class 2 and 2.0 fax modems for small businesses that have a tight budget or that do not expect to fax extensively. These modems are relatively inexpensive (U.S. $75 to $200, compared to as much as U.S. $8,000 for other types of fax hardware, such as the types of hardware listed below). These modems are also compatible with other fax hardware. According to Charles Taite, chief technical officer for Tobit Software, "96 percent of the fax machines on our planet are compatible with Class 2 fax transmissions." (For a list of specific hardware devices that Tobit certifies for use with FaxWare, including Class 2 and 2.0 modems, visit http://www.tobitsoftware.com/support.)
Multiport Fax Devices. You can also configure multiport serial devices that allow you to connect 4, 8, or 24 modems per device for businesses that plan to fax extensively. (FaxWare also supports multiport modem devices, which have built-in modems. Multiport modem devices enable you to consolidate multiple fax modems on a single device--a feature that can simplify fax hardware management.)
Intelligent Fax Boards. FaxWare also supports intelligent fax boards--fax boards that have a built-in CPU. Among other things, intelligent fax boards can provide routing for Direct Inward Dialing (DID), which enables you to route faxes directly to each user's inbox rather than to a communal inbox or to a single user's or group's inbox. (DID is a telephone company service that enables businesses to assign separate telephone numbers to individual users without having to purchase a separate line for each number.)
FaxWare also offers server and client configuration options that you can use to customize a small business' faxing capabilities, including the following options:
Internet Faxing. You can configure the FaxWare fax server to use a company's Internet connection to send and receive faxes over the Internet. FaxWare uses Hewlett-Packard's JetSend protocol, which enables faxes to travel over TCP/IP networks (notably, the Internet) to any JetSend-compliant device, such as printers, photocopiers, mopiers, and fax machines. (For more information about JetSend, visit http://jetsend.hp.com.)
Fax Management Folders. You can use FaxWare client software to create folders in which your customers can store and organize the faxes they receive. Users can then drag-and-drop received faxes into these folders. To create a folder, click File on the FaxWare menu bar, click New, and then click Folder.
Administrative Rules. FaxWare includes a snap-in module for the NetWare Administrator (NWADMIN) utility. When you install this snap-in module, you can use the NWADMIN utility to create rules for FaxWare folders. These rules are then stored in NDS eDirectory. You can also use the NWADMIN utility to create rules that govern inbound and outbound faxes and FaxWare logs. For example, you can configure FaxWare to automatically place outbound faxes in a job log--or holding file--that the owner of the business can then review before faxes are sent out.
Embedded Commands. FaxWare also includes an embedded command language that you can insert into documents to help your customers automate certain processes. For example, you can embed a command that automatically inserts a user's secure fax signature into a business' fax coversheet each time that user sends a fax that includes that coversheet. (FaxWare enables users to create secure fax signatures. These signatures are then stored on the fax server, which uses NDS eDirectory to control access to those signatures.)
You can also use the embedded command language to integrate FaxWare with other applications, such as contact management applications or accounting applications. Users can then fax documents directly from the application in which they are working. (For more information about FaxWare installation and configuration options, you can download FaxWare documentation from http://www.tobitsoftware.com/5/index.html.)
If your small business customers want to integrate FaxWare with GroupWise, you can also upgrade the FaxWare that comes with Novell Small Business Suite 5.1 to FaxWare for GroupWise. With GroupWise integration, incoming faxes are routed to users' GroupWise inboxes. (For information about FaxWare for GroupWise, visit http://www.tobitsoftware.com/fax4gw.)
In addition, Tobit has an authorized reseller membership program for FaxWare. This program is offered for a fee to Novell authorized resellers and CNEs and includes free products, training, and technical support for installing and configuring FaxWare. For more information about this program, call 1-800-468-6248 (1-800-GOTOBIT) or send an e-mail message to email@example.com. (For information on how to contact Tobit Software in Central Europe and the United Kingdom, visit http://www.tobitsoftware.com.)
* Originally published in Novell Connection Magazine
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.