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Novell directory upgrade due Tuesday

The company will release the update to Novell Directory Services, a key component of NetWare 5.0, the linchpin to the firm's growth strategy.

Network software maker Novell will officially launch an upgrade for the linchpin in its growth strategy next week.

The company plans to release a final version of an upgrade to Novell Directory Services, or NDS, one of the key components of its NetWare 5.0 operating system and the firm's chosen mechanism for regaining momentum in the server-based software world. The company announced a test version of the NDS 8.0 software in March.

The NDS upgrade will be available for download next Tuesday from the company's Web site, according to Novell. It is available for free to NetWare 5.0 users. It is not available for older versions of NetWare, the company's operating system software.

Versions of NDS 8.0 for Microsoft's Windows NT and Sun Microsystems' Solaris operating systems are due later this year.

Directory software essentially provides a network manager with a central database to store information about users, systems, and networking devices. As more applications are written to take advantage of its directory, Novell executives hope a wider array of uses will be found for it.

Novell wants to attract developers to NDS so that it can build a solid base of third-party support for the technology, which has become a key ingredient for server-based operating system software.

The latest version, NDS 8.0, aspires to tackle the needs of telecommunications carriers and service providers, building on the company's core of customers in corporations. Novell boasts a 50-million user base for NDS.