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07.12.12

Microsoft is Propping Up BSD

Posted in BSD, GNU/Linux, Microsoft at 5:31 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNU and Linux

Summary: An observation made by a Debian user regarding BSD Magazine

A NOTABLE Debian user who goes by the name of “Weaver” and occasionally writes in the Debian mailing lists wrote about a day ago about “[i]nteresting happenings in the BSD world. BSDMag are promoting a ‘buy one and get the second book free’ scenario with a comprehensive Pentesting format, ‘Inj3ct0r’.

“First thing I note Microsoft, the major sponsor.

“I hope Dru Lavigne isn’t going to too many of them there M$ cocktail parties.”

Microsoft has been trying to marginalise the GPL, e.g. though former staff (this one too looks a tad suspicious) and several years ago readers hypothesised that Microsoft used BSD folks to daemonise the FSF and GNU. We have an interview with Stallman coming, in which we will try to cover UEFI and other technical issues for the most part.

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3 Comments

  1. mcinsand said,

    July 13, 2012 at 7:11 am

    Gravatar

    This makes sense as a delay tactic, although I would think Apple might do the same out of long term interests. Both companies depend on FOSS resources being either split or partially diverted to BSD. The license is permissive, so both companies can use BSD, close it up, and still be legit as long as they preserve copyright notices. MS used BSD utilities in the past, especially when networking was still mystifying them. Actually, now that I remember what a piece of garbageware Appletalk was, going to BSD is probably what made Macintoys network-compatible with the rest of the world.

    For now, though, I think MS’ main concern is keeping a divisive approach. They can’t divide-and-conquer, but they can divide-and-delay. Getting the overall FOSS community focused on either the GPL or BSD paths will only accelerate MS’ demise.

    As for Apple, they depend on BSD for their OS. I have to hand it to Apple to actually do one thing in advance of the rest of the industry; they realized early on that a single company does not have the resources to effectively develop and support a modern operating system. So, they gave BSD the Apple look, removed any traces of versatility or freedom of choice, and BSD has kept them going… as long as it still keeps to the license that lets them remove the freedom. If FOSS becomes all GPL-focused, then Apple won’t be able to continue to take from the BSD community wthout giving back.

  2. Dr. Roy Schestowitz said,

    July 13, 2012 at 7:21 am

    Gravatar

    “Gathering intelligence on enemy activities is critical to the success of the Slog. We need to know who their allies are and what differences exist between them and their allies (there are always sources of tension between allies), so that we can find ways to split ‘em apart. Reading the trade press, lurking on newsgroups, attending conferences, and (above all) talking to ISVs is essential to gathering this intelligence.”

    Microsoft, internal document [PDF]

  3. fupjack said,

    July 13, 2012 at 10:23 pm

    Gravatar

    If you’re going to report something like this, you may want to spend some time looking at it. Microsoft isn’t a ‘major sponsor’ of BSD Magazine; they don’t even have any ads in it. It’s mostly iXSystems, a BSD hardware seller, right smack on the first and last pages. That Pentest magazine, which also isn’t sponsored by Microsoft, is from the same Polish publisher. This idea goes beyond wrong to being absurd.

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