EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

05.26.07

“***” means the *** and ***, equivalent offerings and any offerings marketed as “***”.

Posted in Deals, Deception, Microsoft, Novell, OpenOffice, Patent Covenant, Samba at 4:58 pm by Shane Coyle

Unfortunately, the title of this posting is indicative of the what you will find if you want to have a look at Exhibit B of the Microvell deal, the "payments" section – the one that would likely list which open source products shipped under the agreement Novell agreed to pay Microsoft royalties on, and perhaps even why.

Actually, exhibit C is even worse, as a matter of fact Exhibit C is as follows:

EXHIBIT C
***
***
***
***
***
***
***

—————————————
*** Portion for which confidential treatment requested.

From the non-redacted portions of the agreement, we finally learn about what a "clone product" is, and then we notice that, as Bruce Perens had noted early on after the agreement’s release, OpenOffice.org, StarOffice, OpenXchange and Wine are specifically excluded from the protection, but it also stipulates that Novell is not conceding that these are indeed "clone products".

1.7 “Clone Product” means a product (or major component thereof) of a Party that has the same or substantially the same features and functionality as a then-existing product (or major component thereof) of the other Party (“Prior Product”) and that (a) has the same or substantially the same user interface, or (b) implements all or substantially all of the Application Programming Interfaces of the Prior Product. Those portions of a product that are otherwise licensed to one Party from the other Party, or that are compliant with a specification of a standards organization as to which the other Party has consented to the use of its Patents therefor, shall not be considered in determining whether the product is a Clone Product.
(i) The Parties agree that products sold, licensed, supplied, distributed or otherwise made available by a Party for Revenue before the Effective Date (“Existing Products”) will not be deemed Clone Products. For purposes of clarification, the parties acknowledge that any features and functionality of such Existing Products (“Existing Product Functionality”) may be considered in determining whether a new product (or major component thereof) meets the requirements set forth in the first paragraph of this definition, provided that, even if a new product (or major component thereof) meets such requirements, only those Patents covering inventions in new features and functionality in such Clone Product may be asserted against such Clone Product, and only with regard to Clone Product Functionality. For purposes of this subsection (i), “Clone Product Functionality” means features or functionality (other than Existing Product Functionality) that add to meeting the requirements set forth in the first paragraph of this definition.
(ii) Notwithstanding subsection (i) above, Wine, OpenXchange, StarOffice and OpenOffice are not subject to such subsection (i), however, the exclusion of such products from such subsection (i) is without implication as to (and shall not affect the determination of) whether such products (or any features or functionality thereof) are Clone Products. Further, the Parties agree that (A) no inference shall be drawn from the reference to the above products in this subsection as to whether such products are Clone Products and (B) this subsection shall not be admitted or referred to in evidence in any dispute regarding an evaluation of whether any of the products referred to in this subsection is a Clone Product.

Another noteworthy aspect is the absence of the word Samba from the agreement, especially when OOO and Wine are specifically singled out. It appears that Microsoft is especially concerned about Wine, even specifically excluding it from the Release section:

4. RELEASES
4.1 Parties and Subsidiaries. The parties, on behalf of themselves and their Subsidiaries, irrevocably release each other and their respective present Subsidiaries from any liability for Patent infringement (including any infringement by Excluded Products) arising prior to the Effective Date, provided the foregoing release does not apply to any other parties, including the parties’ respective Distributors and Customers.
4.2 Customers and Distributors. The parties, on behalf of themselves and their Subsidiaries, irrevocably release the direct and indirect Distributors of the Parties from any liability for Patent infringement arising on account of using, importing, offering for sale, selling, licensing, supplying, distributing, otherwise making available, or promoting the commercialization of the Parties’ products and services (including Excluded Products) prior to the Effective Date, provided the foregoing release does not apply to Wine or to any product for which such other Party did not receive Revenue directly or indirectly. The parties, on behalf of themselves and their Subsidiaries, also irrevocably release the respective direct and indirect Customers of the other Party from any liability for Patent infringement arising on account of using the Parties’ products and services (including Excluded Products) obtained prior to the Effective Date, provided the foregoing release does not apply to Wine or to any product for which such other Party did not receive Revenue directly or indirectly.

Groklaw’s discussion includes quite a few attempts at deciphering the redacted portions, some sections provide more context than the Exhibit C listed above. There is hope for transparency, however, since the parties have only stipulated to keep the details confidential until November 1, 2016. And, if they both use Microsoft’s OOXML to store the agreement, perhaps we can get to it in 2012.

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

What Else is New


  1. Links 19/6/2019: Linux Mint Vs Vista 10, Qt 5.13 Released

    Links for the day



  2. The Linux Foundation's Business Model

    The Linux Foundation's plan, illustrated



  3. Links 18/6/2019: i386 Abandoned by Canonical and a New osquery 'Community'

    Links for the day



  4. Indifference or Even Hostility Towards Patent Quality Results in Grave Injustice

    The patent extravaganza in Europe harms small businesses the most (they complain about it), but administrative staff at patent offices only cares about the views of prolific applicants rather than the interests of citizens in respective countries



  5. Links 18/6/2019: CentOS 8 Coming Soon, DragonFly BSD 5.6 Released

    Links for the day



  6. 'AI Taskforce' is Actually a Taskforce for Software Patents

    The mainstream media has been calling just about everything "HEY HI!" (AI), but what it typically refers to is a family of old algorithms being applied in possibly new areas; patent maximalists in eastern Asia and the West hope that this mainstream media's obsession can be leveraged to justify new kinds of patents on code



  7. Patent Maximalism is Dead in the United States

    Last-ditch efforts, or a desperate final attempt to water down 35 U.S.C. § 101, isn't succeeding; stacked panels are seen for what they really are and 35 U.S.C. § 101 isn't expected to change



  8. Links 18/6/2019: Linux 5.2 RC5 and OpenMandriva Lx 4

    Links for the day



  9. Weaponising Russophobia Against One's Critics

    Response to smears and various whispering campaigns whose sole purpose is to deplete the support base for particular causes and people; these sorts of things have gotten out of control in recent years



  10. When the EPO is Run by Politicians It's Expected to Be Aggressive and Corrupt Like Purely Political Establishments

    António 'Photo Op' Campinos will have marked his one-year anniversary in July; he has failed to demonstrate morality, respect for the law, understanding of the sciences, leadership by example and even the most basic honesty (he lies a lot)



  11. Links 16/6/2019: Tmax OS and New Features for KDE.org

    Links for the day



  12. Stuffed/Stacked Panels Sent Back Packing After One-Sided Patent Hearings That Will Convince Nobody, Just Preach to the Choir

    Almost a week ago the 'world tour' of patent lobbyists in US Senate finally ended; it was an utterly ridiculous case study in panel stacking and bribery (attempts to buy laws)



  13. 2019 H1: American Software Patents Are as Worthless as They Were Last Year and Still Susceptible to Invalidation

    With a fortnight left before the second half of the year it seems evident that software patents aren't coming back; the courts have not changed their position at all



  14. As European Patent Office Management Covers up Collapse in Patent Quality Don't Expect UPC to Ever Kick Off

    It would be madness to allow EPO-granted patents to become 'unitary' (bypassing sovereignty of nations that actually still value patent quality); it seems clear that rogue EPO management has, in effect, not only doomed UPC ambitions but also European Patents (or their perceived legitimacy, presumption of validity)



  15. António Campinos -- Unlike His Father -- Engages in Imperialism (Using Invalid Patents)

    Despite some similarities to his father (not positive similarities), António Campinos is actively engaged in imperialistic agenda that defies even European law; the EPO not only illegally grants patents but also urges other patent offices to do the same



  16. António Campinos Takes EPO Waste and Corruption to Unprecedented Levels and Scale

    The “B” word (billions) is thrown around at Europe’s second-largest institution because a mischievous former EUIPO chief (not Archambeau) is ‘partying’ with about half of the EPO’s all-time savings, which are supposed to be reserved for pensions and other vital programmes, not presidential palaces and gambling



  17. Links 15/6/2019: Astra Linux in Russia, FreeBSD 11.3 RC

    Links for the day



  18. Code of Conduct Explained: Partial Transcript - August 10th, 2018 - Episode 80, The Truth About Southeast Linuxfest

    "Ask Noah" and the debate on how a 'Code of Conduct' is forcibly imposed on events



  19. Links 14/6/2019: Xfce-Related Releases, PHP 7.4.0 Alpha

    Links for the day



  20. The EPO is a Patent Troll's Wet Dream

    The makers of software and games in Europe will have to spend a lot of money just keeping patent trolls off their backs — a fact that seems to never bother EPO management because it profits from it



  21. EPO Spreading Patent Extremists' Ideology to the Whole World, Now to South Korea

    The EPO’s footprint around the world's patent systems is an exceptionally dangerous one; The EPO amplifies the most zealous voices of the patents and litigation ‘industry’ while totally ignoring the views and interests of the European public, rendering the EPO an ‘agent of corporate occupation’



  22. Guest Post: Notes on Free Speech, and a Line in the Sand

    We received this anonymous letter and have published it as a follow-up to "Reader's Claim That Rules Similar to the Code of Conduct (CoC) Were 'Imposed' on LibrePlanet and the FSF"



  23. Links 13/6/2019: CERN Dumps Microsoft, GIMP 2.10.12 Released

    Links for the day



  24. Links 12/6/2019: Mesa 19.1.0, KDE neon 5.16, Endless OS 3.6.0 and BackBox Linux 6

    Links for the day



  25. Leaked Financial 'Study' Document Shows EPO Management and Mercer Engaging in an Elaborate “Hoax”

    How the European Patent Office (EPO) lies to its own staff to harm that staff; thankfully, the staff isn't easily fooled and this whole affair will merely obliterate any remnants of "benefit of the doubt" the President thus far enjoyed



  26. Measuring Patent Quality and Employer Quality in Europe

    Comparing the once-famous and respected EPO to today's joke of an office, which grants loads of bogus patents on just about anything including fruit and mathematics



  27. Granting More Fundamentally Wrong Patents Will Mean Reduced Certainty, Not Increased Certainty

    Law firms that are accustomed to making money from low-quality and abstract patents try to overcome barriers by bribing politicians; this will backfire because they show sheer disregard for the patent system's integrity and merely lower the legal certainty associated with granted (by greedy offices) patents



  28. Links 11/6/2019: Wine 4.10, Plasma 5.16

    Links for the day



  29. Chapter 10: Moving Forward -- Getting the Best Results From Open Source With Your Monopoly

    “the gradual shift in public consciousness from their branding towards our own, is the next best thing to owning them outright.”



  30. Chapter 9: Ownership Through Branding -- Change the Names, and Change the World

    The goal for those fighting against Open source, against the true openness (let's call it the yet unexploited opportunities) of Open source, has to be first to figuratively own the Linux brand, then literally own or destroy the brand, then to move the public awareness of the Linux brand to something like Azure, or whatever IBM is going to do with Red Hat.


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

Recent Posts