Classical novae (CNe) have recently been reported to represent the major class of supersoft X-ray sources (SSSs) in the central area of our neighbouring galaxy M 31. This paper presents a review of results from recent X-ray observations of M 31 with XMM-Newton and Chandra. We carried out a dedicated optical and X-ray monitoring program of CNe and SSSs in the central area of M 31. We discovered the ﬁrst SSSs in M 31 globular clusters (GCs) and their connection to the very ﬁrst discovered CN in a M 31 GC. This result may have an impact on the CN rate in GCs. Furthermore, in our optical and X-ray monitoring data we discovered the CN M31N 2007-11a, which shows a very short SSS phase of 29 – 52 days. Short SSS states (durations ≤ 100 days) of CNe indicate massive white dwarfs (WDs) that are candidate progenitors of supernovae type Ia. In the case of M31N 2007-11a, the optical and X-ray light curves suggest a binary containing a WD with MW D > 1.0 M⊙. Finally, we present the discovery of the SSS counterpart of the CN M31N 2006-04a. The X-ray light curve of M31N 2006-04a shows short-time variability, which might indicate an orbital period of about 2 hours.
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