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

11.22.10

SUSE, OpenSUSE, and Why AttachMSFT Won’t Care

Posted in Finance, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, OpenSUSE, SLES/SLED at 4:19 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: A rushed analysis of where AttachMSFT [sic] will stand when it comes to Novell assets and what this means to the OpenSUSE community

WE have about 10 more posts that we hope to publish today about Novell. In this post, we quickly say that OpenSUSE should prepare for exit from Novell. AttachMSFT [sic] (AttachMSFT was suggested as an Identi.ca Hashtag for the Novell/Attachmate/CPTN/MSFT deal), which is the buyer of Novell assets, is funded by what’s known as a “vulture fund”, which means that it buys companies only to sell whatever it has inside it that’s of value. The rest is just left to rot in the carcass. To quote it from someone else:

Glyn Moody’s tweet said it best. “Attachmate got the carcass after Microsoft’s mates ripped out the juicy stuff.

In our previous posts about the sale [1, 2] including this one about UNIX we have already covered most of the important points, but for those who do not know yet, Elliot’s Singer, the person who is responsible for Novell going on sale in the first place, is the one providing funds to AttachMSFT, which nobody really heard of before. Some background about Singer and his “vulture fund” can be found in:

To quote some readers of ours, Oiaohm speaks about a situation where “Attachmate would be likely to just discontinue mono. No mono no hope for MS of .NET being a golden egg long term.”

ThistleWeb says: “I do note the “consortium led by MS” part, aka the PR chaff they can use to deflect any criticism in legal cases”

Jan says: “More strangeness in #AttachMSFT “But as part of the deal [...] Elliott is to become an equity shareholder in Attachmate” http://is.gd/hAOV2 ”

Qu1j0t3 says: “evidently another successful hack of the legal system. #antitrust #microsoft #novell #attachmsft”

Oiaohm adds “CPTN Holdings is another name for Microsoft. [...] CPTN Holdings, a Microsoft (MSFT) led consortium”

Yes, antitrust is a major factor here and a bigger discussion about it can be found in our IRC logs (to be published after midnight GMT). Antitrust scrutiny might not have the ability to take proxies into account.

Back in 2006, Microsoft paid Novell over $300 million to put it under a lot of Microsoft control. Today it finds a way to pay a mere $450 million (small money to technology giants) and takes everything which is needs from Novell, notably software patents.

Jan asks: “What will happen with Mono after AttachMSFT?”

He also tells Jono Bacon (Canonical): “#AttachMSFT has Elliott (that hedgefund that bidded for NOVL in february) as investor. Makes sense now? ;-)”

Rob Myers explains to Jono Bacon: “And certain “intellectual property” goes to a Microsoft consortium…”

Alan Lord tells to Jono Bacon: “And I bet that that information (which #swpats etc.) will remain locked down until they decide to use them…”

“Boycott Novell” warns about Novell because it recognises it as a danger, especially a long-term danger. I personally received messages today (or messages to “Boycott Novell”) which give us credit for foresight.

OMG!Ubuntu! has covered this too, but then again, who has not? Novell is over and “it will be a bummer to see it go,” writes abeNd.org, “i know a bunch of my customers will probably scramble to want to migrate to microsoft asap”

Here is another corporate press article about it (similar to the press release, so no real exploration here).

Novell Inc. said Monday morning that it will be acquired in a private-equity-led deal valued at $6.10 a share, or about $2.2 billion.

Carlo Piana writes: “Now I’m in #paranoid mode WRT Novell sale. Going to read what the well informed @maryjofoley can tell us”

Is he serious when calling Mary Jo Foley well informed? She repeats what Microsoft says and Microsoft misinforms more than almost anyone. Here is what she wrote:

So far, Microsoft is saying little about its role in the deal.

“We are pleased to be a part of the acquisition of certain intellectual property assets of Novell. Microsoft looks forward to continuing our collaboration with Novell into the future, to bring mixed source IT solutions to customers,” said the company via a statement from Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President and Deputy General Counsel of Intellectual Property and Licensing.

[...]

Attachmate officials have said they plan to operate Novell as two business units, Novell and SUSE, and join them with their Attachmate and NetIQ businesses.

Update: It sounds like Mono development will continue under the new Attachmate owners, as well.

No word about OpenSUSE. AttachMSFT just want to suck what’s left of SLE* (contracts) and have Microsoft paid for patents that nobody knows anything about. VMB_ware with Microsoft’s Maritz at the top would not have been much better as a takeover, but at least it’s one of those real companies with known products and brands. Our reader rpgdude writes: “OIN should buy the patents” (well, it’s too late now, isn’t it?).

cubezzz remarks: “Novell continues to grant IBM’s license of Unix”

It will get quite complicated if Microsoft indeed gets UNIX. But again, what about OpenSUSE? Nobody appears to be talking about it. Unless a way is found to make a lot of money from it, what will possibly keep Novell/AttachMSFT funding which the project requires? Novell was already a bad steward of OpenSUSE, for example whenever servers fell.

We have plenty of catching up to do with OpenSUSE news (although there is little going on there nowadays) and one thing that caught our eyes the other night is this post about OpenSUSE and KDE, which ends with:

Finally, users can make visual contact with their virtual desktops by hovering the bottom of the screen to make these arrows appear and go to a different virtual desktop. Additionally, there could be a window list much like Mac OSX’s or Windows 7 but sitting comfortably on the right edge of the screen which accumulates in similar fashion to what AfterStep did borrowing from NeXTStep.

OpenSUSE is technically just as good if not better than the proprietary competition, but it does not have marketing.

Here is Novell promoting SLE* in a recently-uploaded video. Why not OpenSUSE?

They are trying to get people to defect from Red Hat to Novell/SLE* (with more promotional videos), which Novell pays Microsoft for. Novell claims to have the most supported applications (watch the video above) — a claim previously disputed by others. Even Novell’s PR agents use the same tactics, having just pulled other talking points like number of appliances built by the fruits of Friedman, who was behind the project before he left the company. IBM is also among these talking points from Novell’s PR (we covered part I earlier this month), which tries to elevate morale as the best staff is leaving.

“Novell claims to have the most supported applications (watch the video above) — a claim previously disputed by others.”Most of the other news we found is just about SLES, so there is almost nothing to say about OpenSUSE. Timothy Prickett Morgan mentioned SLES in some of his good articles, the latter of which states: “At the moment, ScaleMP’s vSMP Foundation shared memory clustering software works with Red Hat Enterprise Linux 4 and 5 and Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 and 11.”

Novell servers also get a mention in other places (similar here), with the most major story being announced in a press release to generate some news like:

i. Novell announces The Hong Kong Jockey Club

ii. One of the World*s Largest Racing Organizations Standardizes on SUSE Linux Enterprise

To summarise the point of this quick post, Novell will no longer be Novell; it is going to be a bunch of assets in a shell, with its patents stripped away and sold to a Microsoft shell. OpenSUSE is unlikely to be part of this plan and since Novell too appears to have lost interest, the talented OpenSUSE people should try to fork OpenSUSE (trademark owned by Novell) or contribute to a different distribution. Novell authorised the death knell of OpenSUSE 4 years ago when it agreed with Microsoft that OpenSUSE should not be used in businesses which make money, not without being sued or extorted by Microsoft anyway. It’s there in the deal — the agreement both companies signed without consultation from OpenSUSE members.

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 21/8/2014: Conferences of Linux Foundation, Elephone Emerges

    Links for the day



  2. Links 20/8/2014: Linux Event, GNOME Milestone

    Links for the day



  3. Corruption Watch: Microsoft Lobbying Designed to Kill Chile's Free Software Policy and Promote Microsoft With Subsidies, More Dirty Tricks Emerge in Munich

    icrosoft is systematically attacking migrations to GNU, Linux and Free software, using dirty tricks, as always



  4. Vista 8 Such a Disaster That Even Microsoft Cannot Cope With It, Vapourware Tactics Start Early

    Microsoft's Windows-powered services are failing and Windows gets bricked by Microsoft patches, whereupon we are seeing yet more of Microsoft's vapourware tactics (focusing in imaginary, non-existent versions of Windows)



  5. On BlackBerry and Other Patent Trolls

    A roundup regarding patent trolls, starting with the bigger and latest joiner, BlackBerry's new patents apparatus



  6. Links 19/8/2014: Humble Jumbo Bundle 2 Betrayal, Mercedes-Benz Runs GNU/Linux

    Links for the day



  7. BlackBerry -- Like Microsoft Nokia -- Could be the Next Patent Proxy Troll

    BlackBerry is restructuring for patent assertion (i.e. trolling) in the wake of some alliances with Microsoft



  8. After Microsoft's Soft Bribe Some Non-Technical Deputy Does Not Like Free Software, Microsoft-Linked Media Responds to This Non-News by Making Bogus Claims of Munich Leaving GNU/Linux (Updated)

    The subversive forces that have secretly been attacking Munich over its migration to GNU/Linux (Microsoft press, Gartner, and even HP) are back to doing it while China and Russia follow Munich's lead



  9. Gates Foundation CFO Quits and Debate About Revolving Doors Recalled Amid Systematic and Shrewd Bribery of Public Officials

    More officials step out of the Gates Foundation and their destination is not known yet; Gates continues to corrupt the public sector with his money so as to increase personal gain at taxpayers' expense



  10. Links 19/8/2014: GNU/Linux Raves and Alternative to Proprietary Voice Chat

    Links for the day



  11. Links 18/8/2014: Linux 3.17 RC1, Escalation in Ferguson

    Links for the day



  12. Gartner Group Advocates Using Defective Software With Back Doors

    Despite strong evidence that Microsoft has been complicit in illegal surveillance, Gartner continues to recommend the use of Windows and other espionage-ready Microsoft software



  13. The Microsoft Patent Trolls: Android Extortion, Vringo Versus Google, and Intellectual Ventures

    Roundup of news about patent aggression by Microsoft and some of its proxies



  14. Links 16/8/2014: Microsoft Linux, US Government Turns to Free Software

    Links for the day



  15. Links 15/8/2014: Reiser4 in Headlines Again, GNOME and KDE Events Finish

    Links for the day



  16. Links 14/8/2014: Kernel Summit Coming, KMix on KDE Frameworks 5

    Links for the day



  17. Shameless Microsoft Spin is Blaming China for Microsoft's Misconduct and Back Doors While Justifying Massive Losses in Hardware (Made in China)

    A new look at how Microsoft-friendly media takes negative Microsoft news and turns that news into some kind of scandals where Microsoft is the victim



  18. Microsoft Spin in the Media Evokes 'New Microsoft' and New Back Doors

    Some new examples of Microsoft boosters rewriting history, characterising Microsoft as a FOSS champion, and generally weak/shallow reporting on Microsoft's audio/video surveillance software



  19. Links 13/8/2014: GNU/Linux as Winner, New Snowden Interview

    Links for the day



  20. Reader's Article: Skype Spying Reaches New Levels of Blatant

    Forced 'upgrades' of Skype give useds [sic.] of Skype more than they asked for



  21. The Problem is Software Patents (and Scope), Not Patent Trolls Who Abuse Them Just Like Large Corporations

    Reminder of the dangers of losing sight of the real patent problem, which is the patents themselves, not necessarily those who use them



  22. Fraud in the USPTO and CAFC Helped Apple Launch Frivolous Patent Lawsuits Against Linux/Android, Based on New Withdrawals

    Inherent corruption in the US system has aided Apple's assault on east Asian electronics giants that use Linux at the core of their products



  23. Investigation Reveals That USPTO is Corrupt, Time to Abolish It or Annul Nearly a Million Patents

    Corruption is found at the heart of the USPTO and the USPTO works hard to hide it, despite attempt by whistleblowers to bring this corruption to light



  24. Links 13/8/2014: Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.6 Beta, Tizen in Watches

    Links for the day



  25. Links 12/8/2014: Chromebooks Surge, OpenGL in the Headlines

    Links for the day



  26. Bill Gates is Profiting By Diverting Public Money to His Own Pocket and Reducing Wages

    Gates' lobbying for companies he is an investor of and for lower salaries inside companies he is investing in (and managing) comes as no surprise



  27. Microsoft is Still Attacking Open Standards, So Khronos Does Not Need the Microsoft Moles

    Having attacked the industry's document standard OpenDocument Format (ODF) while pretending to have 'embraced' ODF Microsoft is now pretending that it is eager to support OpenGL



  28. Another Depressing Look at the Patent Systems in the US and in Europe

    A roundup of news about patent monopolies and in particular the immense power wielded by giant multi-national corporations that steer the debate and acquire trans-Atlantic monopolies on ideas, always against citizens' interests



  29. Links 11/8/2014: DEFT 8.2, Linux Mint on Debian Stable

    Links for the day



  30. Links 9/8/2014: Knoppix 7.4.0, GNU Linux Libre 3.16

    Links for the day


CoPilotCo

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

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts