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Articles and Tips: article

Richard Whitehead

01 Aug 2005

This year marks the seventh anniversary of Novell ZENworks. And what better time to release ZENworks 7? That's right. Novell is releasing ZENworks 7 in calendar Q3!

ZENworks 7 has many enhancements and new capabilities. It includes updated versions of ZENworks Desktop Management, ZENworks Server Management, ZENworks Handheld Management, ZENworks Linux Management and more. But some of the most significant changes are in the Linux Management, Desktop Management and new Asset Inventory offerings. Table 1 shows the key features and functionality of ZENworks 7 and what's new or improved.

Desktop Management

How would you like to manage your Windows workstations using the power and security of Linux? Now you can! With Novell ZENworks 7 Desktop Management, you can now install the following key elements on SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server 9 Support Pack 1 or Novell Open Enterprise Server (Linux) 1.0:

  • ZENworks Desktop Management Server: This software enables you to centrally create and manage policies and profiles for users and workstations. These policies and profiles enable you to distribute, manage and update applications, perform advanced inventory and remote management functions, and automatically install operating systems on the Windows workstations in your network.

  • ZENworks Middle Tier Server: This software works with Web Server software installed on a Linux server to set up authentication and communication between the Desktop Management Server inside the corporate firewall and workstations outside the corporate firewall. This communication makes it possible for mobile users to get Desktop Management services when they are traveling or working from home. You can also fully manage PCs without the full Novell Client32.

Some of the most significant changes in ZENworks 7 are the Linux Management, Desktop Management, and New Asset Inventory Offerings.

During installation you can now choose between the two elements organized in various combinations called "install sets." You can choose any of the following install sets:

  1. Install All ZENworks Features on a Linux Server

  2. Install Only the Desktop Management Server on a Linux Server

  3. Install Only the ZENworks Middle Tier Server on a Linux Server

  4. Customize the ZENworks Desktop Management Installation on a Linux Server

Although you can store the workstation application and policy files on a Linux server, you must use Novell ConsoleOne to configure them from your administrative Windows workstation or server.

Linux Management

ZENworks 7 Linux Management makes it easy to embrace and extend Linux within your existing environment. It's the only solution that uses policy-driven automation to deploy, manage and maintain Linux resources. These automated and intelligent policies allow administrators to provide centralized control across the lifecycle of Linux systems for desktop lockdown, imaging, remote management, inventory and software management. The result is a comprehensive Linux management solution that eliminates IT effort by dramatically reducing the required overhead needed to manage Linux systems.)

Web-Based Administration

ZENworks 7 Linux Management introduces a new Web-based management tool for administering your ZENworks features: the ZENworks Control Center.

You can launch the ZENworks Control Center using either Internet Explorer 6 SP1 (or higher) or Firefox version 1.0 (or higher). If you are using a browser that's not supported, you'll get a warning message when you log in. After you log in, enter the URL into the URL locator. The default URL for the ZENworks Control Center is https://server/zenworks, where server is either the DNS or IP address of the ZENworks server.

The first screen to appear is the ZENworks Login. (See Figure 1.) Enter the username and password you assigned during the installation. You can also choose the language. The ZENworks Control Center supports English, French, German, Portuguese and Spanish.

Figure 1: ZENworks Control Center Login screen allows different administrators to gain secure access to only the information they have rights to.

After you successfully log in, you will see the Getting Started page. (See Figure 2.) From this page you can:

  • get a product overview

  • learn how to register Linux devices

  • learn how to deliver an application

  • learn how to use policies

  • link to online documentation

Figure 2: The Getting Started page provides a quick way to access information about ZENworks 7 Linux Management.

If you want the Getting Started page to come up every time you launch the ZENworks Control Center, uncheck the "Do not show me this again" option at the bottom of the page.

After viewing the Getting Started page the first time, you will see the main home page. (See Figure 3.) This page contains important information about the state of ZENworks Linux Management.

Figure 3: ZENworks Control Center task based approach gives you a single view into the health and status of the system.

Besides the ZENworks Control Center, the suite includes new capabilities for reporting, imaging, remote control, desktop lockdown and hardware/software inventory. For more information, check out "Hear Ye! Hear Ye!" in the March/April 2005 issue of Novell Connection magazine for an in-depth look at ZENworks 7 Linux Management.

Asset Inventory

In May, Novell announced the first shipment of Novell ZENworks Asset Management. (See Figure 4.) ZENworks Asset Management integrates asset inventory usage and license reconciliation capabilities to provide the most complete, accurate view of software installations and license compliance available. Combining data enables you to get a complete view of your IT assets. This ensures license compliance and eliminates software overspending so you only buy the licenses your organization needs.

Figure 4: Most ZENworks Asset Management administrators access the reports and analysis they need to complete projects from the Web Console.

While ZENworks 7 Suite does not include ZENworks Asset Management, it does include the Asset Inventory component of ZENworks Asset Management. ZENworks 7 Desktop Management and ZENworks 7 Server Management also include the Asset Inventory component. Table 2 shows the differences between the traditional inventory in ZENworks, Asset Inventory and ZENworks Asset Management.

Handheld Management, Server Management and more...

Although I've focused mainly on Desktop Management, Asset Inventory and Linux Management, other parts of the ZENworks 7 Suite also have key improvements. With ZENworks 7 Handheld Management you can now:

  • remote control or remotely view a handheld device

  • synchronize the device password with the network password

  • assign multiple Access Points to a device and define the order of the Access Points to which the Palm OS or Windows CE device must connect

  • specify the date and time when you want to install the Handheld Application object files on the device

  • automatically uninstall the software from the Windows CE devices

  • automatically delete the files from Palm or Windows CE devices

ZENworks 7 Server Management adds support for SUSE LINUX and Red Hat Linux servers. The Management and Monitoring Services also have improvements. You can enable, disable and specify intervals for NetWare and eDirectory Traps for multiple NetWare servers. You can create rules for managing incoming alarms and performing various actions when the alarms occur. The software processes the alarms based on the rules you create. You can create rules by combining the following parameters:

  • Source Address

  • Severity

  • State

  • Alarms

  • Varbinds of traps

  • Time

ZENworks 7 includes functionality for managing Tablet PCs, as well as support for Windows XP SP2. Novell Messenger, also included, provides administrators and help desk technicians with an easy, secure way of chatting with end users to resolve problems. (See Figure 5.)

Figure 5: Novell Messenger, also included in ZENworks 7, provides administrators and help desk technicians with an easy, secure way of chatting with end users to resolve problems.


ZENworks 7 provides significant improvements and can change the way you manage your diverse IT resources. Only ZENworks 7 provides you with a choice of back-end infrastructure and client devices. For more information on ZENworks 7, visit /zenworks.

And last, but not least, let's wish ZENworks Happy Birthday and many more to come!

You can install ZENworks 7 Desktop Management services on a SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server 9 or Novell Open Enterprise Server Linux server:

  1. From the terminal console, use the su command to switch to the root user.

  2. Run mount /media/cdrom to mount the ZENworks 7 Desktop Management Installation CD or CD recorder.

  3. Change to the CD mount directory, and run ./setup to display the first page of the installation program.

  4. Read the introduction, then press Enter to display the Installation Prerequisites page.

  5. Read the prerequisites, pressing Enter to page down as you read. At the end of the prerequisites, press Enter to display the License Agreement page.

  6. Read the terms of the license, pressing Enter to page down as you read. At the end of license agreement, enter Y if you accept the terms of the license.

Enter back on any page of the installation program to go back to the previous page.

Enter quit on any page to cancel the installation program.

The first page of the installation displays.

Table 1: A High-Level Features Summary of ZENworks

Feature Key
ZENworks 7 Suite
ZENworks 7 Desktop Management
ZENworks 7 Server Management
ZENworks 7 Handheld Management
ZENworks 7 Linux Management


Policy-Driven Automation

Novell Open Enterprise Server support

Windows Server support

Red Hat Enterprise Linux Server support

SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server support

eDirectory and Active Directory support

Software and content distribution

Agent-based architecture

ZENworks Control Center for Linux Management


Data Management

Remote Management

Desktop Management

Windows 98/NT4/2000/XP Pro/Tablet support

Novell Linux Desktop support

Firewall friendly

Rogue process termination

Advanced MSI support

Application chaining

Checkpoint restart

Mobile user management

Web-based application delivery

"Lights out" distribution

Personality migration

Novell Messenger


Asset Management

Network Discovery

Increased inventory accuracy

Inventory Routers/Hubs/Switches

Inventory printers

Prebuilt reports

Web-based reporting

Integration with ZENworks Asset Management

Reporting and querying

Hardware and Software Inventory

Inventory History Reporting

Inventory Change Alerting

Extensible and customizable inventory

Integration with Remedy

Patch Management

Automated patch management

Windows patches*

Linux patches

Citrix, Microsoft, Adobe, Symantec and more

Flexible scheduling options

Vulnerability assessment

Detailed patch information

Applicable target selection

Patch compliance reporting

Server Management

Distribution reporting

Versioning notification

System management & monitoring

Traffic analysis

Network discovery

Web-based health reporting

Linux management & monitoring

eDirectory management & monitoring

Handheld Management

Sync device password with network password

RIM BlackBerry support

WinCE management

Palm OS management

Windows Mobile 2003 for Pocket PC management

Remote wireless access points

Configuration management

Device Self-destruct

Handheld restore

Password Enhancement and Enforcement

File retrieval



*Patch subscription for 90 days on 100 devices

Table 2: ZENworks Asset Management Feature Summary

Feature Key
ZENworks 7 Suite
Asset Inventory Component
ZENworks Asset Management

Functionality Provided

Basic ZENworks inventory and canned reports installed as part of ZENworks 7 and component products

Included with ZENworks 7 Suite, ZENworks 7 Desktop Management, ZENworks 7 Server Management

Available as separate purchase. Not included in the ZENworks Suite.


Supported Operating Systems


Windows 2003

Windows 2000

Inventoried Servers


Windows Server 2003

Windows Server 2000

Managed Desktops

Windows XP Desktop

Windows 2000 Desktop

Windows NT Desktop

Windows 98SE

Windows 95

IP-Based Device Discover







IP-Based devices


32-bit console

Browser-based console

Role-based administration

Integration & Data Access


Data access


Export/Open access

Export/Open access

Required integration effort




Inventory Gathering

Scan Management

Initiate on event

Initiate on schedule

Initiate from script

Initiate by local user

Initiate by admin remotely

View local inventory on device

Output scan data locally

Run standalone or from media

File Scanning

Specify by directories to exclude

Scan for specified file extension

Retrieve file from device

Application & Hardware Recognition

Knowledgebase provided for identification

Software only

Software & Hardware

Software & Hardware

Update frequency




Automatic updates

Predefined suites

MS Office Only



Number of products in Knowledgebase


65,000 titles + versions

65,000 titles + versions

Inventory Gathering

Inventory Change Management

Retain hardware inventory history

Retain software inventory history

Compare inventory by date

Alert on change detected in database info

Report changes

E-mail alert

Hardware location management

Hardware lease information

Software categories

Software Tracking

Software Usage Tracking

Usage tracking by user

Usage tracking by device

Disconnected usage tracking

Domain the user is logged into

Specify applications to track

Local applications

Server-based applications

Software use start and stop

Frequency / Active Use / Background Use

Usage trend gathering

Software License Compliance

Purchase Information

Connection to reseller systems

Import purchase/invoice data

License purchase data

Proof-of-license ownership reference

Cost Tracking

License Management

Manage software license information

Accomodates software update/upgrade

Suite aware

License Compliance

Passive usage metering (track and report)

Allow tolerance for overage

Assign license to device

Assign license to group

Assign license to cost center

Assign license to site



Browser based

Report access controlled by permission

Query inventory

Save new query


Includes canned reports

Report Creation

Save as new report

Run report on schedule

Alert user to new report data

Archive report results automatically

Secured/role-based access to reports

Drill down with report data and graphics

Canned & Custom Reports Overview*

General inventory component reports

Inventory by site, department and cost center

Discovered PCs, Servers, Hubs, Routers, Printers

Leased device list reports

Upgrade readiness reports

Windows XP SP2 application compatibility reports

Software usage reports

Used vs. installed software

Software not used in a defined time period

Unauthorized software (based on custom category)

Purchase summary details reports

License allocations reports

Software license compliance reports

Installed software vs. licenses owned

Calculate license excess/deficiency

Cost of licenses in use



*General list of report types. Does not represent a comprehensive list of available reports.

We have talked about many technologies and capabilities within ZENworks. Table 3 shows a highlevel view of what capabilities are in each product.

Table 3: ZENworks Products

Desktop MGMT
Server MGMT
Handheld MGMT
Linux MGMT
Asset MGMT

Desktop Management

Server Management

Handheld Management

Linux Management

Asset Inventory

Software Usage

License Compliance

Hardware/Software Inventory

Novell Messenger

Personality Migration

Patch Management*

Software Packaging

Data Management


Remote Management



*Patch subscription for 90 days on 100 devices

* 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.

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