02.06.09

Gemini version available ♊︎

How Novell Helps Microsoft Attack GNU/Linux (Except for SUSE)

Posted in Fork, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Java, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, OpenOffice, SLES/SLED, SUN at 1:55 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Darth Vader Microsoft
Picture by SubSonica

“Every line of code that is written to our standards is a small victory; every line of code that is written to any other standard, is a small defeat. Total victory [...] is the universal adoption of our standards by developers, as this is an important step towards total victory for Microsoft itself: “A computer on every desk and in every home, running Microsoft software.””

Microsoft, internal document [PDF]

NOVELL IS A LARGE company with many different teams. Only a small portion of Novell (maybe about 10%) is directly associated with free/open source software and there are many who are stuck in between, including those who capitalise on what Novell labels “mixed-source” [1, 2, 3, 4]. Apart from those who build Free software (Greg Kroah-Hartman comes to mind, although there are downsides) and those who build hybrid software at Novell, there are those whose task seems to be to contaminate GNU/Linux with Microsoft’s intellectual monopolies, which only Novell is permitted to share (with paying customers). Miguel de Icaza is a prime suspect because he is helping Microsoft fight Free software while at the same type harming several companies that compete against Microsoft. He advances Microsoft APIs that are a trap.

Neil McAllister, who writes for IDG [1, 2], has defended Mono in a new column that they put in Slashdot’s front page. What gives?

Miguel de Icaza is himself something of a controversial figure these days. He’s a heavyweight among open-source developers, yet he works for Novell, the company that soured the Linux community by signing a patent-licensing agreement with Microsoft. Worst of all, he seems to have all but dedicated himself to projects related to Mono — in other words, to copying Microsoft technologies.

Yes, that is precisely what he is doing with Microsoft assisting his every step. Why would Microsoft help? Because it makes GNU/Linux stronger? Of course not.

Corporations help themselves, they don’t promote or support betterment of their competitors. As Microsoft's internal presentations indicate (required training to staff), “We are here to help MICROSOFT.”

So how does Mono harm Free software? It’s possible classify the issues as follows:

  • Control. Mono is inclined to evolve along the path of .NET, which gives Microsoft great control over its competitor/s (c.f. API wars mythology).
  • Dependency. Whereas many applications that mimic functionality can be interchanged easily, Mono resides beneath multiple applications, so its removal or change would have a cascading effect.
  • Software patents. We have it from the mouths of multiple Microsoft seniors (some public statements and some private which antitrust litigation exposed) that patents are part of the control mechanism.
  • Java/Sun. As hostile as Sun may have been towards GNU/Linux in the past, it is muchly required these days for its good work on projects like Java and OpenOffice.org. By wooing developers away from Java, Microsoft hopes to starve Sun along with its contributions to Free software.
  • Latch. Mono brings with it a raft of other technologies that permit Microsoft to control developers and control the Web (i.e. access to data). Moonlight is one example of this.
  • DRM. The war around de facto DRM standards is no secret because antitrust exhibits exist that shed bright light on it. Mono empowers .NET, which in turn enables and facilitates more widespread Windows DRM (denial of access to media).
  • Security. Mono inherits architectural issues not only from .NET but from Windows as well.
  • Philosophy. We are aware of GNU/Linux developers who are disguised by technological assimilation to a company that committed many crimes (the criticism of Microsoft has nothing to do with scale but mostly with behaviour). This repels and sometimes discourages development, not just casual use.
  • Novell. Copyrights and trademarks are to be owned by Novell; principal Mono-based projects are sponsored by Novell too. It would not have become a serious concern had Novell not expressed its commitment to Microsoft, to "IP peace of mind" (i.e. software patents as a selling point), even to OOXML. Mono gives Novell great control (leverage) over the desktop and its direction.

There are more points and we covered some of them last year.

Mono’s impact can transcend GNU/Linux. It’s an API war, not just a platform war. Novell is a privileged party. To whit:

“There is a substantive effort in open source to bring such an implementation of .Net to market, known as Mono and being driven by Novell, and one of the attributes of the agreement we made with Novell is that the intellectual property associated with that is available to Novell customers.”

Bob Muglia, Microsoft President

Novell employees are doing the same type of thing to OpenOffice.org [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6]. Rather than going strongly in defense of Sun’s Java, Novell is going against it. It also goes head-to-head against Sun’s OpenOffice.org with its Microsoft-esque fork, Go-OOXML. They are still stirring things up to generate dirt which harms the OpenOffice.org brand.

A second thing is what I think could be called the Too Many Evangelists syndrome. The way Michael [Meeks of Novell] put it, the major stumpers for Linux, like Alan Cox or Linus Tovalds, are themselves programmers. “With OpenOffice, the exact opposite is typically the case. Most the leads have had intangible contributions, and I think that’s a big part of the problem with OpenOffice in terms of attracting developers — that there are so many people who are not developers who are also very eager to tell everyone what to do.” The code base isn’t even the real issue, in his purview: every project has a potentially messy, outsized code base.

This has already been refuted. Novell is good at having its employees turn to their supposedly ‘personal’ blogs where they slam Microsoft’s competitors, including Java.

Star wars Vader
Picture by SubSonica

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. When Twitter Protects Abusers and Abuse (and Twitter's Sponsors)

    Twitter is an out-of-control censorship machine and it should be treated accordingly even by those who merely "read" or "follow" Twitter accounts; Twitter is a filter, not a news/media platform or even means of communication



  2. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, January 18, 2022

    IRC logs for Tuesday, January 18, 2022



  3. Links 19/1/2022: Wine 7.x Era Begins and Istio 1.12.2 is Out

    Links for the day



  4. Another Video IBM Does Not Want You to Watch

    It seems very much possible that IBM (or someone close to IBM) is trying to purge me from Twitter, so let’s examine what they may be trying to distract from. As we put it 2 years ago, "Watson" is a lot more offensive than those supposedly offensive words IBM is working to purge; think about those hundreds of Red Hat workers who are black and were never told about ethnic purges of blacks facilitated by IBM (their new boss).



  5. What IBM Does Not Want You to Watch

    Let's 'Streisand it'...



  6. Good News, Bad News (and Back to Normal)

    When many services are reliant on the integrity of a single, very tiny MicroSD card you're only moments away from 2 days of intensive labour (recovery, investigation, migration, and further coding); we've learned our lessons and took advantage of this incident to upgrade the operating system, double the storage space, even improve the code slightly (for compatibility with newer systems)



  7. Someone Is Very Desperate to Knock My Account Off Twitter

    Many reports against me — some successful — are putting my free speech (and factual statements) at risk



  8. Links 18/1/2022: Deepin 20.4 and Qubes OS 4.1.0 RC4

    Links for the day



  9. Links 18/1/2022: GNOME 42 Alpha and KStars 3.5.7

    Links for the day



  10. IRC Proceedings: Monday, January 17, 2022

    IRC logs for Monday, January 17, 2022



  11. Links 17/1/2022: More Microsoft-Connected FUD Against Linux as Its Share Continues to Fall

    Links for the day



  12. The GUI Challenge

    The latest article from Andy concerns the Command Line Challenge



  13. Links 17/1/2022: digiKam 7.5.0 and GhostBSD 22.01.12 Released

    Links for the day



  14. IRC Proceedings: Sunday, January 16, 2022

    IRC logs for Sunday, January 16, 2022



  15. Links 17/1/2022: postmarketOS 21.12 Service Pack 1 and Mumble 1.4 Released

    Links for the day



  16. [Meme] Gemini Space (or Geminispace): From 441 Working Capsules to 1,600 Working Capsules in Just 12 Months

    Gemini space now boasts 1,600 working capsules, a massive growth compared to last January, as we noted the other day (1,600 is now official)



  17. [Meme] European Patent Office Space

    The EPO maintains a culture of illegal surveillance, inherited from Benoît Battistelli and taken to a whole new level by António Campinos



  18. Gemini Rings (Like Webrings) and Shared Spaces in Geminspace

    Much like the Web of 20+ years ago, Gemini lets online communities — real communities (not abused tenants, groomed to be ‘monetised’ like in Facebook or Flickr) — form networks, guilds, and rings



  19. Links 16/1/2022: Latte Dock 0.11 and librest 0.9.0

    Links for the day



  20. The Corporate Cabal (and Spy Agencies-Enabled Monopolies) Engages in Raiding of the Free Software Community and Hacker Culture

    In an overt attack on the people who actually did all the work — the geeks who built excellent software to be gradually privatised through the Linux Foundation (a sort of price-fixing and openwashing cartel for shared interests of proprietary software firms) — is receiving more widespread condemnation; even the OSI has been bribed to become a part-time Microsoft outsourcer as organisations are easier to corrupt than communities



  21. EPO's Web Site Constantly Spammed by Lies About Privacy While EPO Breaks the Law and Outsources Data to the United States

    The António Campinos-led EPO works for imperialism, it not only protects the rich; sadly, António’s father isn’t alive anymore and surely he would blast his son for doing what he does to progress his career while lying to staff and European citizens



  22. Links 16/1/2022: Tsunami and Patents

    Links for the day



  23. IRC Proceedings: Saturday, January 15, 2022

    IRC logs for Saturday, January 15, 2022



  24. Links 16/1/2022: Year of the GNU/Linux Desktop and Catch-up With Patent Misinformation

    Links for the day



  25. Patrick Breyer, Unlike Most German Politicians, Highlights the Fact That Unified Patent Court (UPC) and Unitary Patent Are Incompatible With EU Law

    A longtime critic of EPO abuses (under both Benoît Battistelli and António Campinos leadership), as well as a vocal critic of software patents, steps in to point out the very obvious



  26. Links 15/1/2022: Flameshot 11.0 and Libvirt 8.0

    Links for the day



  27. Blogging and Microblogging in Geminispace With Gemini Protocol

    Writing one’s thoughts and other things in Geminispace — even without setting up a Gemini server — is totally possible; gateways and services do exist for this purpose



  28. Links 15/1/2022: Raspberry Pi in Business

    Links for the day



  29. IRC Proceedings: Friday, January 14, 2022

    IRC logs for Friday, January 14, 2022



  30. Gemini Clients: Comparing Moonlander, Telescope, Amfora, Kristall, and Lagrange (Newer and Older)

    There are many independent implementations of clients (similar to Web browsers) that deal with Gemini protocol and today we compare them visually, using Techrights as a test case/capsule


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