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11.12.07

Quick Mention: Pieter Hintjens on Novell, Dell, and Patents

Posted in Microsoft, Novell, Patents, Red Hat at 2:32 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Have a look at the following analysis. It neatly connects with yesterday's analysis, which included the Dell deal.

As I predicted here about two months ago, Dell has announced that it will offer its customers a neat package of Dell hardware, Suse Linux software, and Microsoft patents.

It’s very clear what is happening. Linux is now the de-facto commodity operating system for servers. Microsoft, having gone through the ignore-laugh-fight-lose cycle has now realised that it can turn patent troll on Linux and jump ahead a full business cycle, going from commercial server operating system to IPR revenue model without the messy free software step in between.

“How do you make money from free software?”, asked the VC. “Patents”, came the answer from the lawyer.

Steve Ballmer license

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4 Comments

  1. SubSonica said,

    November 12, 2007 at 4:05 pm

    Gravatar

    Fortunately, Dell seems to be promoting as well Ubuntu and RedHat as well (maybe they are trying “not to put all the eggs in the same basket”) , lets see how much time they resist Microsoft pressure… (remember Comes vs MSFT’s documents on this matter when Dell first started distributing servers with RedHat preinstalled)
    The advantage here is that Gnu/Linux distros are beginning to allow the big OEMs to break Microsoft stranglehold on their business. There is a mutual dependency between Microsoft and the OEM (and they combine their efforts to lock customers into the “forced obsolescence” cycle) but now OEMs have an alternative, whereas if Microsoft loses their leonine exclusive contracts with the OEMs they will lose their main (and, for some products, as Vista, only one) means of distribution and market penetration.

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 12, 2007 at 4:23 pm

    Gravatar

    Lenovo has certified some of its laptops for Ubuntu and Fedora, so this type of choice (you mention Ubuntu and Red Hat) is not surprising.

    Learn how Microsoft brutally sabotaged Dell’s attempts to sell GNU/Linux in the past.

  3. SubSonica said,

    November 13, 2007 at 7:04 am

    Gravatar

    Oh, yeah, those handy Iowa documents… no wonder they wanted to settle the case ASAP:
    source:
    http://www.theregister.co.uk/2007/01/27/microsoft_execs_jilted/

    Microsoft executives – having been unceremoniously dressed down for, among other things, plotting to cut off rival Netscape’s supply of life-giving air – discussed bludgeoning Dell over the true-blue ally’s embrace of Linux.

    The online musings came to light this week in the antitrust case being tried in Iowa state court. In an email thread exchanged in November, 2002 – less than a week after Microsoft promised a federal judge it would mend its ways – top executives brainstormed on ways to get Dell to come to its senses and end its torrid affair with Linux.

    “We should whack them, we should make sure they understand our value, we should do all of the things you and Brian suggest,” Paul Flessner, Microsoft’s senior VP of server apps, wrote to Bill Veghte, a corporate VP.

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    November 13, 2007 at 8:21 am

    Gravatar

    There are many more such examples. Not all of them fit the theme of this Web site, but those which do are probably somewhere in the archives,.

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