Novell is racing to establish NDS as the dominant directory by giving it away to those who use non-Novell platforms.
The company is hoping the strategy will increase sales of Managewise and Groupwise, as well as other add-on applications. It has already struck a deal with Sun to license NDS, following the announcement that it would issue royalty-free source code and distribution licences for the product.
Novell claimed the move was not a desperate bid to shift away from its reliance on Netware as a revenue stream because of pressure from Microsoft Windows NT.
William Donahoo, senior director of Novell's product marketing, said: 'It is not about Intranetware not selling well. This is a long-term strategic bet to ensure that NDS is pervasive before Microsoft releases its directory in 1998. It will create an environment where we can sell more Groupwise and Managewise and drive and shape the industry.'
NDS was previously bundled only with Intranetware.
Microsoft's beta version of its own directory is due next year.
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