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


The Usual Suspects, The Game

Posted in Antitrust, Corel, Deals, Deception, Humour, IBM, Intellectual Monopoly, Law, Microsoft, Novell, SCO, SUN, UNIX, Xandros at 1:24 am by Shane Coyle

As a follow-up to a previous train of thought, regarding the Usual Suspects (so to speak) in Microsoft’s intellectual property saga, I thought it would be fun to review just some of the players who have had a role – recurring, walk-on, or otherwise.

Actually, to make this more engaging, this will be our first contest on the site, I believe. Put the following events in chronological order, the first correct answer in the comments section gets a coupon, redeemable for a free download of EDU-Nix Dual-Mode CD, or our very own SueMe Linux ("still in early development stages", ie vaporware).

  1. Caldera buys, then becomes SCO
  2. MS and Sun make a deal, in which all OOO installs prior to the deal were absolved, as was Sun’s StarOffice going forward, from MS IP claims.
  3. Corel acquires Wordperfect from Novell
  4. Corel invests in Xandros
  5. SCO sued IBM for who knows what, the story changes often.
  6. MS and Sun took a Unix license from SCO Update June 6: Sun also took out a Linux right-to-use license for their end users
  7. Caldera acquired DR-Dos from Novell, allegedly promising to sue MS but not mention Novell’s involvement.
  8. SCO tried to impose a right-to-use license on Linux users
  9. Novell claims ownership of IP SCO using to extort Linux users
  10. MS makes a deal with Novell in which Novell agrees to pay ongoing royalties based on open source software shipped under the agreement in exchange for a right-to-use license (covenant not to sue) for Novell customers.
  11. Caldera Sues MS over DR-DOS
  12. Novell sells some unix rights to SCO
  13. Novell Sues MS over WordPerfect
  14. MS makes a deal with Xandros
  15. Sun sues MS over their Java implementation
  16. MS makes a deal with Novell for Novell to pull out of EU antitrust suit
  17. Corel pledges to implement OOXML in Wordperfect

Of course, this is almost certainly a woefully incomplete, and perhaps even wholly inaccurate (hey, it’s late and I’m working from memory) listing of just some of the events in recent software industry history involving our friends from Redmond, meant mainly as a fun exercise and a conversation starter…

What did I miss? What did I mess up? And, what does it all mean? Tawk amungst yaselves

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


  1. Alan Polinsky said,

    June 7, 2007 at 1:10 pm


    I don’t believe that Corel invested in Xandros. Quoting from Dr. Frederick Berenstein, (http://linux.sys-con.com/read/44559_p.htm)

    “Xandros originally came from the acquisition of the former Corel Linux Business Division by a group of investors called Linux Global Partners. That took place in 2001…”

  2. shane said,

    June 7, 2007 at 1:35 pm


    Hmmm. I was working off of Stephe’s entry, but I can check into that I am sure…

    “By putting a framework in place to share intellectual property, ….” There is no “sharing” happening today. A quick search of the USPTO database reveals the number of patents with “assignee name” of Xandros: ZERO. The number of patents with an “assignee name” of Microsoft: 6776. The number of patents with an “assignee name” of Corel (one of Xandros investors): 40. It might be interesting to know what rights Xandros had to Corel patents, and what rights they may have just cross licensed, but that’s Corel’s problem.

    Thanks for the information, I’ll update once I can confirm/deny… it still doesn’t say Corel didn’t invest in them, just where they descend from. MS invests in many spinoffs of themselves…

  3. shane said,

    June 7, 2007 at 1:53 pm


    That didn’t take long, lookie here:

    Who owns Xandros?

    Linux Global Partners provided the initial equity financing for Xandros. Other stockholders include Corel Corporation and vested employees.

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    June 7, 2007 at 3:20 pm


    Just follow the money and see who is serving who.

  5. Roy Schestowitz said,

    June 7, 2007 at 3:47 pm


    Just caught this quote which Groklaw considers to be funny:

    “Under the third version of the General Public License, expected to be published in final form this month by the Free Software Foundation, all such deals that were not inked by March 28 are forbidden. As a result, it would appear that Xandros will not be allowed to distribute open source code licensed under GPLv3 because of its relationship with Microsoft. Typaldos [Xandros CEO] said he’s not concerned. “If you are a businessperson, you can’t worry about every eventuality.”


    So, maybe business prospects are not truly a priority here.

  6. Roy Schestowitz said,

    June 8, 2007 at 2:53 am


    Here is another one from the news:

    “Microsoft and LG have been partners since 2004.”


    Well, well, well. The pieces are slowly falling into place, but what about Samsung and Fuji-Xerox?

What Else is New

  1. The Spanish EPO Scandal - Part I

    How García-Escudero Marquez, the sister of a Spanish Senate speaker, got controversially appointed to succeed the (now) EPO's Vice-President Alberto Casado Cerviño

  2. Media Alert: IAM 'Magazine' Does Not Protect Sources

    An important discussion regarding the role of IAM (Intellectual Asset Management) in the debate about EPO abuses

  3. Richard Stallman and Eben Moglen on the Microsoft-Red Hat Deal

    Founder of Free software and author of the GPL (respectively) comment on what Microsoft and Red Hat have done regarding patents

  4. Links 30/11/2015: Linux 4.4 RC3, Zaragoza Moving to FOSS

    Links for the day

  5. Public Protests by European Patent Office (EPO) Staff Weaken the EPO's Attacks on the Media

    Where things stand when it comes to the EPO's standoff against publications and why it's advisable for EPO staff to stage standoffs against their high-level management, which is behind a covert crackdown on independent media (while greasing up corporate media)

  6. Why the European Patent Office Cannot Really Sue and Why It's All -- More Likely Than Not -- Just SLAPP

    Legal analysis by various people explains why the EPO's attack dogs are all bark but no bite when it comes to threats against publishers

  7. How the EPO Twisted Defamation Law in a Failed Bid to Silence Techrights

    Using external legal firms (not the EPO's own lawyers), the EPO has been trying -- and failing -- to silence prominent critics

  8. East Texas and Its Cautionary Tale: Software Patents Lead to Patent Trolls

    Lessons from US media, which focuses on the dire situation in Texas courts, and how these relate to the practice of granting patents on software (the patent trolls' favourite weapon)

  9. The Latest EPO Spin: Staff Protesters Compared to 'Anti-Patent Campaigners' or 'Against UPC'

    Attempts to characterise legitimate complaints about the EPO's management as just an effort to derail the patent office itself, or even the patent system (spin courtesy of EPO and its media friends at IAM)

  10. The Serious Implication of Controversial FTI Consulting Contract: Every Press Article About EPO Could Have Been Paid for by EPO

    With nearly one million dollars dedicated in just one single year to reputation laundering, one can imagine that a lot of media coverage won't be objective, or just be synthetic EPO promotion, seeded by the EPO or its peripheral PR agents

  11. EPO: We Have Always Been at War With Europe (or Europeans)

    The European Patent Office (EPO) with its dubious attacks on free speech inside Europe further unveiled for the European public to see (as well as the international community, which oughtn't show any respect to the EPO, a de facto tyranny at the heart of Europe)

  12. What Everyone Needs to Know About the EPO's New War on Journalism

    A detailed list of facts or observations regarding the EPO's newfound love for censorship, even imposed on outside entities, including bloggers (part one of several to come)

  13. EPO Did Not Want to Take Down One Techrights Article, It Wanted to Take Down Many Articles Using Intimidation, SLAPPing, and Psychological Manipulation Late on a Friday Night

    Recalling the dirty tactics by which the European Patent Office sought to remove criticism of its dirty secret deals with large corporations, for whom it made available and was increasingly offering preferential treatment

  14. The European Private Office: What Was Once a Public Service is Now Crony Capitalism With Private Contractors

    The increasing privatisation of the European Patent Office (EPO), resembling what happens in the UK to the NHS, shows that the real goal is to crush the quality of the service and instead serve a bunch of rich and powerful interests, in defiance of the original goals of this well-funded (by taxpayers) organisation

  15. Microsoft Once Again Disregards People's Settings and Abuses Them, Again Pretends It's Just an Accident

    A conceited corporation, Microsoft, shows not only that it exploits its botnet to forcibly download massive binaries without consent but also that it vainly overrides people's privacy settings to spy on these people, sometimes with help from malicious hardware vendors such as Dell or Lenovo

  16. When the EPO Liaised With Capone (Literally) to Silence Bloggers, Delete Articles

    A dissection of the EPO's current media strategy, which involves not only funneling money into the media but also actively silencing opposing views

  17. Blogger Who Wrote About the EPO's Abuses Retires

    Bloggers' independent rebuttal capability against a media apparatus that is deep in the EPO's pocket is greatly diminished as Jeremy Phillips suddenly retires

  18. Leaked: EPO Award of €880,000 “in Order to Address the Media Presence of the EPO” (Reputation Laundering)

    The European Patent Office, a public body, wastes extravagant amounts of money on public relations (for 'damage control', like FIFA's) in an effort to undermine critics, not only among staff (internally) but also among the media (externally)

  19. Links 27/11/2015: KDE Plasma 5.5 Plans, Oracle Linux 7.2

    Links for the day

  20. Documents Needed: Contract or Information About EPO PR/Media Campaign to Mislead the World

    Rumour that the EPO spends almost as much as a million US dollars “with some selected press agencies to refurbish the image of the EPO”

  21. Guest Post: The EPO, EPC, Unitary Patent and the Money Issue

    Remarks on the Unitary Patent (UP) and the lesser-known aspects of the EPO and EPC, where the “real issue is money, about which very little is discussed in public...”

  22. Saving the Integrity of the European Patent Office (EPO)

    Some timely perspective on what's needed at the European Patent Office, which was detabilised by 'virtue' of making tyrants its official figureheads

  23. A Call for Bloggers and Journalists: Did EPO Intimidate and Threaten You Too? Please Speak Out.

    An effort to discover just how many people out there have been subjected to censorship and/or self-censorship by EPO aggression against the media

  24. European Patent Office (EPO) a “Kingdom Above the EU Countries, a Tyranny With ZERO Accountability”

    Criticism of the EPO's thuggish behaviour and endless efforts to crush dissenting voices by all means available, even when these means are in clear violation of international or European laws

  25. Links 26/11/2015: The $5 Raspberry Pi Zero, Running Sans Systemd Gets Hard

    Links for the day

  26. EPO Management Needs to Finally Recognise That It Itself is the Issue, Not the Staff or the Unions

    A showing of dissent even from the representatives whom the EPO tightly controls and why the latest union-busting goes a lot further than most people realise

  27. Even the EPO Central Staff Committee is Unhappy With EPO Management

    The questions asked by the Central Staff Committee shared for the public to see that not only a single union is concerned about the management's behaviour

  28. The Broken Window Economics of Patent Trolls Are Already Coming to Europe

    The plague which is widely known as patent trolls (non-practicing entities that prey on practicing companies) is being spread to Europe, owing in part to misguided policies and patent maximalists

  29. Debunking the EPO's Latest Marketing Nonsense From Les Échos and More on Benoît Battistelli's Nastygram to French Politician

    Our detailed remarks about French brainwash from the EPO's media partner (with Benoît Battistelli extensively quoted) and the concerns increasingly raised by French politicians, who urge for national or even continental intervention

  30. The Sun King Delusion: The Views of Techrights Are Just a Mirror of EPO Staff Unions

    Tackling some emerging spin we have seen coming from Battistelli's private letters -- spin which strives to project the views of Techrights onto staff unions and why it's very hypocritical a form of spin


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