05.14.07

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Novell Put Its Own Customers at Risk

Posted in Free/Libre Software, FUD, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Novell, Patents at 10:28 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

So there I was having a quick glance at Novell-tailored RSS feeds. One particular headline caught my attention. It reads “Rich Media Network Insight24 Showcases Novell’s ‘Linux Security and Assurance’ podcast”.

Hmmm… somewhat comical for somebody to deliver ‘Novell’s Linux Security and Assurance’ if interpreted in the wrong context, no? Novell has opened the floodgates to threats when it offered admission that Linux was ‘unclean’. To its credit, Novell has some decent businessmen. The company received over $0.3 billion for this admission. Essentially, it swallowed the bait and it didn’t taste nice. Based on some financial transactions, we suspect that its executives received some good ol’ payola. Maybe it was a by-product and maybe we are just over-speculative.

At some stage, Novell has said that its deal with Microsoft does not guarantee that Microsoft won’t sue Novell customers. Interestingly enough, putting one’s own customer in jeopardy is exactly what we find in Microsoft. Suing one’s own customer is a dilemma and endless debate that Microsoft itself is now perplexed by. Just published in The Register:

With this unbelievable, weak reply, Ballmer chose to threaten many of Microsoft’s largest customers with the possibility of legal action, if they’ve picked up Linux, as most of Microsoft’s largest customers have. In so doing, the CEO replaced Gates’s straight-forward feistiness of yesteryear with a vacuous grimace delivered via the vehicle of a business publication.

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8 Comments

  1. Marcus Meissner said,

    May 15, 2007 at 12:36 am

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    Security and Assurance here is of course the technical thing.

    Ciao, Marcus

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 15, 2007 at 2:58 am

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    Of course. :-) I neglected to indicate explicitly enough that this was a comical statement.

  3. Francis Giannaros said,

    May 15, 2007 at 5:38 am

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    > Novell has opened the floodgates to threats when it offered admission that Linux was ‘unclean’.

    Oh come on, give it a rest. Curious that you have read all these extra Novell news sites and yet you failed to read their latest PR blog entry which explicitly states (while re-quoting the open letter):

    ”We disagree with the recent statements made by Microsoft on the topic of Linux and patents. Importantly, our agreement with Microsoft is in no way an acknowledgment that Linux infringes upon any Microsoft intellectual property. When we entered the patent cooperation agreement with Microsoft, Novell did not agree or admit that Linux or any other Novell offering violates Microsoft patents.”

    It’s easy to make strong statements; not so easy to substantiate them.

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 15, 2007 at 6:11 am

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    http://boycottnovell.com/2007/05/09/novell-says-ok-to-ip/

    Novell’s PR confirms that Novell needs IP, contradicting previous appeasing statements

  5. Francis Giannaros said,

    May 15, 2007 at 10:44 am

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    What? That is a completely separate issue (though one we can talk about if you like). You made the bold statement that Novell admitted that Linux infringes on Microsoft’s patents. I would like to see some real evidence for this statement. You persistently make it on the site and you don’t have a shred of evidence to back it up. If you do, by all means, present it.

    The article you linked to talks about (i) agreement not to sue customers, and (ii) sanctioned access to Microsoft’s code for the interopability. Nothing there about admitting that Linux infringes on MS’s patents.

  6. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 15, 2007 at 4:12 pm

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    Read Matt Aslett’s blog and then find the article which he eventually published. It made it all very clear and I stand by what I said.

  7. Marti van Lin said,

    May 15, 2007 at 9:38 pm

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    Ah yeah Roy, this must be that Francis we scribbled about in cola, right?

    Smells a little fishy ;)

    Keep up the good work!

  8. Francis Giannaros said,

    May 16, 2007 at 2:45 am

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    Do you have a link? Couldn’t you provide the justification yourself?

    Marti, is that some type of attempt at intimidation?

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