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Novell offers free Web server

The company posts free software that integrates with Novell Directory Services to streamline access to files stored on its network servers.

Novell (NOVL) has posted a free Web server, specially tailored for users of its network operating systems.

Novell Web Server 3.0, posted to the company's Web site, is tightly integrated with the company's Novell Directory Services allowing easy access to documents and files stored on network servers.

That integration eliminates the need for files to be copied to the Web server. A virtual directory feature allows files to be stored on servers running the company's NetWare and IntranetWare network operating systems, said the company.

A directory service is an important part of a network because it acts as an address book for all attached users and offers a single point for administrators to configure security and application access.

The NDS integration in Novell's Web Server allows administrators to assign password authentication requirements needed to access files. For instance, confidential human resources files can be accessible only to managers with proper authority. The Web server also supports Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encryption technology.

Novell, which yesterday appointed former Sun Microsystems CTO Eric Schmidt as its new CEO, is on a mission to establish NDS as an industry standard. The company is licensing the technology free of charge to several vendors, including Hewlett-Packard, SCO, and Sun. The three companies are adding NDS to their Unix operating systems.