Novell is Run by Microsoft, Claims PC Pro

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Novell, Patent Covenant at 8:37 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

from the ‘duh’ dept.

Microsoft has issued a few new statements which address some uncertainties or ambiguities.

Microsoft: We won’t sue, but run Novell


Now, in a statement sent to PC Pro, the company claims it has no intention of taking legal action against open-source organisations. ‘If we wanted to go down that road we could have done that three years ago,’ the statement reads. ‘Rather than litigate, Microsoft has spent the last three years building an intellectual property bridge that works for all parties – including open source – and the customer response has been tremendously positive. Our focus is on continuing to build bridges.’

Yet, despite claiming it’s not pursuing legal remedies, Microsoft delivers a veiled warning to open-source users. ‘The real question is not whether there exist substantial patent infringement issues, but what to do about them. Microsoft and Novell already developed a solution that meets the needs of customers, furthers interoperability, and advances the interests of the industry as a whole. Any customer that is concerned about Linux IP issues needs only to obtain their open source subscriptions from Novell.’

This is not exactly new. Microsoft invites (if not urges) people to use SUSE Linux. Essentially, it wants these people trapped inside a contract. It also wants other distributors pressured through punishment (in terms of customer loss). Is anyone still thinking that Novell dislikes Microsoft’s patent assault? Novell’s passive attitude speaks volumes.

Carla criticises all the misleading headlines and drama which instilled fear in people’s minds. She also offers some other words of wisdom to offer.

If companies want to appease the bully, that’s their business. Some folks fear it will set a legal precedent that could be used against all Linux users, not just commercial Linux vendors. I think that’s a pretty remote possibility, though in this here modern world you never know what sort of insanity will triumph. And that’s exactly what the root of all of this is — if you’re in doubt that a company can be mentally ill, Microsoft’s patent shenanigans make the case for it.

So now we are told that Novell is run by a “mentally ill” company. See how this post began. None of this tactless manipulation is news. It does, however, offer validity and empowers the argument. As Shane said months ago, it has become harder and harder to tell the difference between Microsoft and Novell.

Microsoft ‘Study’ Smears GPLv3 (Updated)

Posted in Deception, GPL, Microsoft, Novell at 6:31 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Sheer GPLv3 hatred is nothing new from Microsoft. Now comes their little ‘study’.

A study (PDF) funded by Microsoft and carried out by Harvard Business School professor Alan MacCormack aims to determine what kind of features and protections developers want in version 3 of the widely-used General Public License (GPL 3). The study, which uses extremely questionable methodology, concludes that open-source software developers don’t want the GPL 3 to impose extensive patent licensing requirements or prevent agreements like the controversial cross-licensing deal between Novell and Microsoft.

This is not too surprising. Here you have a survey funded by Microsoft which assesses a licence they have little to do with (only transitively). Microsoft and Novell have had a highly controversial study about customer satisfaction with their little deal, as well.

Microsoft has said on numerous occasions (even recently) that it hates GPLv3 and that it was probably the cause it threatened to sue just over a week ago, according to their executives.

The company has also used a lot of lobbying and placements in the media (using proxies) to discredit GPLv3 and create a scare.

This is just something to be aware of.

The reality about the GPLv3 is much brighter, but media manipulation can have you misled.

Update: see the criticism of this ‘study’ at Groklaw. It’s titled “Only 11% of OS Targeted Programmers Willing to Help MS-Funded Study”.

Helping Linux by Cloning Novell SUSE and Redistributing?

Posted in Fork, GNU/Linux, Novell, OpenSUSE, SLES/SLED at 5:44 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

It should be very obvious by now what Microsoft intends to achieve with Novell-type deals. This new article says it loud and clear.

Instead of slaughtering open source with patent lawsuits, injunctions and damage claims, it appears the goal is to milk, or bleed, open source software companies through licensing, and indemnification deals. You can’t say there’s anything secret or hidden about that strategy.

The following article suggests an excellent solution which relates to a previous (and very recent) one. Have a look and see what you think.

Microsoft’s legal war chest is greater than the gross national products of numerous nations. They can, at will, become the RIAA of the operating system and user software worlds.


My strong suggestion is a very easy one, if you believe that it’s time for Microsoft to put up or shut up: Make your own Linux distro and publish it.


Then publish it; send the info to distrowatch.com. You’ll get no money for it, but you’ll be one of a few million people for Microsoft to sue. Since they’ll be forced to stop making innovative software and spend money on litigation, quality will suffer for a little while. Then it will get better again.

As you may know, Shane has its own educational Linux distribution, but is it time for FreeSUSE? SUSE Linux without the litigious burden and without any affiliation or relation to Novell? CentOS and Oracle (among others) did this with Red Hat, but in terms of obligation to a third party, there was none.

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