Anderson's latest mission is to deliver on a commitment made by Novell senior management in March to migrate the majority of the company's 5,000 users from Windows and Office to open-source alternatives.
The company's chief executive Jack Messman recognises the importance of being seen to lead from the front when encouraging users to ditch the tried and semi-trusted world of Microsoft for the disruptive and unknown world of desktops running Linux and and OpenOffice, which is an open-source alternative to Microsoft's Office application.
ZDNet UK found some time in Anderson's hectic schedule to get some details on moving an entire enterprise worth of desktops onto a relatively untried platform.
Why is this migration being done? What is it about the Linux desktop that makes this migration so compelling and worthwhile?
Frankly I think we are moving to the Linux desktop for two reasons. One is corporate strategy but if I put my CIO hat on and say 'why would I do this', then for me it's about flexibility, choice, security. There is a lot that Linux has to offer that Microsoft says it's doing, but the more I read the more it seems what they're supposed to be coming up with is late.
So what is the timeframe for the migration from Office and Windows to Open Office running on the Linux desktop?
The aim is to have 90 percent of Novell on OpenOffice by the end of July. We are well on track for that. We think it's very important to give everyone a hands-on feel for open-source software and take it department by department, rather than rolling it out in a big disruptive way. As we go we are finding more and more material to help them migrate.
We took a rough guess of what the training costs would be for each person in the company and we are actually not finding it to be as big as we expected it to be, which is great.