Ray Noorda, the founder and first CEO of Novell passed away on 9 October 2006. His management acumen and leadership, along with the technical brilliance of Drew Major, Dale Niebaur, Kyle Powell, and Mark Hurst resulted in Novell Netware. Netware was a “Killer App” that had a profound effect on the rest of the IT industry. Netware dominated the LAN space in the late 1980’s and 1990’s.
Unfortunately, Novell was late to the game in realizing that TCP/IP was the wave of the future. They stayed too long with their IPX/SPX protocol, which is quite inefficient in environments other than high-speed LANs. As a result, the various Unix vendors, Microsoft and now Linux eventually overtook them as the major players in the network operatng system space.
But, in its time, Netware was the standard of excellence and a tribute to the “out of the box” thinking of Noorda, Major and others who developed a new technlogy that changed the way we work and think.