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Attachmate’s First Milestone: Sign Another Patent Deal With Microsoft, Pay Microsoft a ‘Linux Tax’ on SUSE

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, OpenSUSE, Scalix, SLES/SLED, Xandros at 3:14 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Buying Novell to shake Microsoft’s hands on patents in GNU/Linux (and validate malicious allegations)


Summary: Reiteration of the foolishness seen in the latest Microsoft deal (sellout) of Attachmate, which put its men in charge of SUSE

Nearly 5 years after signing a patent deal with Microsoft, Novell is no more. Attachmate took over the company, whose Web domain is mostly inactive except when new faces appear as in this case:

It’s been about 2.5 months that I have been in the role of President and General Manager of Novell, and since joining The Attachmate Group, Novell has taken many steps towards defining the next great chapter in its evolution and history.

What has Attachmate actually accomplished so far? It recently renewed the patent deal with Microsoft, which only leaves OpenSUSE in more of a scandalous scenario. The project is mostly idle, much like some Tumbleweed in the wind (there is a new article about it).

Christine Hall further solidifies the stance that we should keep the same attitude towards SUSE. She writes:

Indeed, it did seem that Boycott Novell had outlived it’s usefulness, until Monday’s announcement that Microsoft had renewed their deal with SUSE and would be putting $100 million into the Linux distro’s coffers. Although the announcement on the SUSE web site made no mention of patents, tech news sites like InformationWeek have indicated that it’ll be business as usual, with MS’s patent FUD being given the perception of legitimacy through SUSE..


Techrights is probably right, even after this development. Really, nothing has changed, it’s just the same old deal extended for another four years. There may be nothing about this deal that doesn’t stink, and stink badly, but there’s nothing new here. Sadly, the Microsoft/SUSE connection would seem to have become a legacy with which we are doomed to live for as long as both companies are viable.

This is a real shame. There was a time when SUSE was considered by many to be the Rolls Royce of distros. Now it’s basically “Windows for Linux.” All they need to do now is add a “Start” button, a registry, and put it on a file system that’s prone to rapid fragmentation.

Like we said before, people should strongly urge other people to boycott SUSE and choose other distributions instead. It’s very feasible and the boycott does work. The only use left for Novell is its case against SCO (which Pamela Jones continues to cover), but just like any company that falls into Microsoft’s hand, there is no future left. Former Novell employee Dr. Bill gets it wrong about how Novell got SUSE and how Attachmate gets SUSE in the following new video. Basically, he wrongly asserts that Novell bought SUSE from SUSE and that Attachmate bought SUSE from Novell rather than just buy the whole of Novell.

Novell was bad news for SUSE all along, especially after the Microsoft deal. Now that SUSE is in Microsoft-friendly hands, there is no reason to feel loyal to SUSE based on its old self. The move back to Germany is not a sign of independence or self-liberation, it is the increased dependence on Microsoft under leadership from Attachmate (previous SUSE leaders left or got nudged out). Let this entire affair teach us that Microsoft deals are suicide. Another sign of this is that, as we covered before, Xandros recently sold Scalix — a piece of news that even the Canadian press has covered a while later:

Fresco Microchip, a Toronto company with Ottawa operations that develop television imaging technology, has raised $9 million in new financing. Celtic House Venture Partners, Ventures West and others put the money into Fresco which previously raised $39.3 million Xandros, a New York company which develops Linux business software in Ottawa, has sold a Scalix Linus email product line for $12 million in cash and stock to Sebring Software of Sarasota, Florida.

They too break the company into pieces as though it gets liquidated (Attachmate’s deal was hinged upon given Novell’s patents to Microsoft). It wasn’t long ago that Xandros actually bought Scalix.

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