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National Computer Systems
Maggie Knack
+1-952-681-3000

Virtual University Enterprises
Scott Allison
+1-952-681-3000

NCS-VUE Signs Agreements with Informix Software and Linux Professional Institute

New Agreements Showcase Range of VUE’s Testing Capabilities

Minneapolis, Minn., December 14, 1999 — National Computer Systems, Inc., (NCS) (NASDAQ: NLCS) announced today that through its Virtual University Enterprises (VUE) IT testing service, it has contracted with Informix® Software, Inc., (NASDAQ: IFMX) and Linux Professional Institute, Inc., (LPI) to begin test delivery of their certification exams. Informix, a leading provider of database management systems for enterprises worldwide, will transition its entire testing delivery program to VUE. LPI is launching a new certification program through VUE, seeking to establish a recognized and widely endorsed body of professionals certified on the Linux operating system. The terms of these agreements were not disclosed.

Informix develops advanced database technology, with an emphasis on online transaction processing, data warehousing and other high-end database applications. The Informix Certified Professional Program validates an individual’s expertise in Informix products and benchmarks their skills against those of other Informix professionals. Informix plans to release several new tests that take advantage of VUE’s integrated system of web browser-based testing and center based testing.

Mike Serpe, Informix certification manager said, “As Informix continues to develop more complex solutions to accommodate the explosive growth in e-commerce, web content management and other high performance database applications, it is increasingly important that the vendors we work with have the highest technical proficiency. VUE’s technology makes them the industry leader.” Serpe also serves as an officer of the Computer Education Management Association (CEdMA).

The Linux Professional Institute is a community project to develop professional certification for the Linux operating system. Established as a nonprofit organization focused on defining distribution-neutral and vendor-neutral certification standards, LPI involves a unique blend of hundreds of volunteers and professionals in many different capacities and encourages public involvement through mailing lists and its Web site at www.lpi.org.

“From early on, our mandate has been to be massive and global. We need to deliver our Linux certification exams worldwide and to be able to scale up to accommodate a large number of exam candidates at a single time,” said Dan York, chair of the board of directors of the Linux Professional Institute. “Working with VUE, we know that we can achieve this goal. We are excited to be working with them and looking forward to the successful deployment of our program.”

The Linux Professional Institute Certification will be a standardized, multi-national program consisting of three levels. VUE expects to begin delivery of the first exam in the first quarter of 2000.

“The strength and flexibility of VUE’s test delivery system is evident in these two agreements. Both programs will benefit from our technical expertise and commitment to ‘breathtaking’ customer service. VUE is as equally adept at facilitating a start-up certification program for Linux Professional Institute, as it is in expanding an already established testing curriculum for Informix,” said Neil Crocker, VUE’s vice president of IT Programs.

VUE (www.vue.com) is the IT testing, course registration and training administration division of NCS. From operational centers in the United States, Australia, Japan and the Netherlands, VUE provides a variety of services to the IT training industry. Currently serving over 100 countries, there are more than 1600 VUE Authorized Testing Centers in its rapidly expanding network. NCS is a global information services company providing software, services, and systems for the collection, management, and interpretation of data. NCS (www.ncs.com) serves important segments of the education, testing, assessment, and complex data management markets. Headquartered in Minneapolis, NCS has 4,600 employees serving its customers from more than 30 locations worldwide.

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Informix is a registered trademark of Informix Software, Inc. Linux is a trademark of Linus Torvalds in the U.S. and other countries.
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