Bonum Certa Men Certa

Microsoft Influence in Novell's Management Increases, More .NET Focus

Growing closer

Movell and Nicrosoft



"It’s going very well insofar as we originally agreed to co-operate on three distinct projects and now we’re working on nine projects and there’s a good list of 19 other projects that we plan to co-operate on."

--Ron Hovsepian, Novell's CEO



Guess who inside Novell has just been promoted? Well, it is Justin Steinman, who called non-customers “hobbyists”, lied about reception of the deal (using manufactured and bogus 'studies' [1, 2), upset the FSF [1, 2]], and threw FUD at Red Hat on numerous occasions.

Justin Steinman, erstwhile marketing director for Novell's open-source business, just got an upgrade to vice president, Solution and Product Marketing at Novell;


He has a dual role that involves Microsoft too (hence the title). As Novell's dependence on Microsoft increases, it's only natural to see the company pushing and advancing Microsoft technologies. Amid financial disaster, now more than ever Novell needs to please Microsoft.

In today's news there is a prime example of this obedience to Microsoft's agenda. Novell announced the release of Mono 2.0 a couple of days ago and Paul Krill, who typically serenades for Microsoft in some of his articles, is quick to cover this.

Microsoft is working with de Icaza and Novell on Moonlight, which will enable applications built for Microsoft's Silverlight browser plug-in to run on Linux. Moonlight 1.0, a more complete release than what has been available, is set to be released by the end of this month.


Whose project is it? Is it Novell's or is it Microsoft's? Either way, here is one comment which says that the guys Novell fail to learn from history.

MS .Net is being used, via Mono, the same way Microsoft used the Win32 application programming interfaces(APIs) to move UNIX into a less significant position in the workstation and server market in the 90s.


Jose_X says: "to me mono is the attempt at that addiction but for the developers not users.. it's effective and it's independent of the patent thing and still very important." In the same vein, Bill Gates once said about end users: “They’ll get sort of addicted, and then we’ll somehow figure out how to collect sometime in the next decade.”

This developer 'addiction' which can cost dearly at a later stage. The habitual issue was previously discussed here or here, at least in part. It's the forgotten and overlook effect of Mono adoption. There is also the issue of patents and a new comment in OSNews says:

What makes you think the Linux kernel is safe? Microsoft has claimed that the kernel has hundreds of patent infringements in it. What about Samba or Wine? I don't understand this focus on Mono. If you're really worried about Microsoft's software patents then I suggest you stop using any kind of software altogether."


Carla Schroder wrote this article about Mono and it led to a heavy volume of reactions.

The Mono project has been branded as evil, a sellout, a product of a Microsoft-loving lackey from its inception. I think this is a misguided attitude that is rooted in a mistrust of the power of FOSS, and especially the GPL.


Linux Today readers disagree, as can be seen in these comments and also these (a lot more comments in here).

SplendidCRM comments there too, but there's an obvious vested interest (they use .NET as 'open source'). Other than that, the responses are quite consistent. People dislike Mono, which they label a "Trojan horse."

“People dislike Mono, which they label a "Trojan horse."”Another issue worth mentioning is a Microsoft consultant who always lurks in our IRC channel (some say he's a 'spy', alongside Novell's spy, Benjamin Weber). He seems to be informing or being informed by Mono boosters, who are now intervening in a thread whose goal is to add or prevent the entry of Moonlight into Debian.

If someone's radar detected Moonlight trying to creep into Debian, why is a Microsoft consultant watching over this? And why intervene by announcing this in the #boycottnovell IRC channel?

Moreover, who would possibly want Microsoft's most toxic Poisonware inside Debian? Only Novell and Microsoft would probably want this and they sway careless minds who believe that this thing is innocent, despite an independdent legal analysis which led Fedora to forbidding Moonlight.

Jo Shields seems to be ignoring the fact that Debian lacks the prerequisite patent grant to distribute Moonlight. Only Novell has such a grant, which is something that is documented very clearly and unambiguously by both Microsoft and Miguel de Icaza.

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