05.29.09

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Lawsuit Against Microsoft/Switzerland Succeeds So Far, More Countries/Companies Should Follow Suit

Posted in Courtroom, Europe, Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Law, Microsoft at 7:36 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Cow with bell
Microsoft cash cows get no green pastures

Summary: Microsoft’s contract in Switzerland shot down by lawsuit

Previous posts about the Swiss government being sued for blindly selecting Microsoft are:

  1. Microsoft Sued Over Its Corruption in Switzerland, Microsoft Debt Revisited
  2. Can the United Kingdom and Hungary Still be Sued for Excluding Free Software?
  3. 3 New Counts of Antitrust Violation by Microsoft?
  4. Is Microsoft Breaking the Law in Switzerland Too?
  5. Microsoft Uses Lobbyists to Attack Holland’s Migration to Free Software and Sort of Bribes South African Teachers Who Use Windows
  6. ZDNet/eWeek Ruins Peter Judge’s Good Article by Attacking Red Hat When Microsoft Does the Crime
  7. Week of Microsoft Government Affairs: a Look Back, a Look Ahead

The initial outcome is finally in (Swiss press) with partial English translations in Slashdot, whose summary is:

Looks like the challenge to the Swiss Administrative Court concerning the government contract given to Microsoft without any public bidding was successful: The court has issued a temporary injunction (note: article in German) against the Federal Office of Buildings and Logistics (BBL), effectively stopping the CHF 14M (£8M; $15M)-contract to deliver licenses and support for software used on government computers for the next three years. According to Swiss Government practices, any contract over CHF 50’000 has to undergo a public call for offers. The BBL cited ‘no serious alternatives’ as the reason which this contract never did.

Free/open source companies can now follow the same footsteps and carry out similar actions in other European nations, e.g. the UK and Hungary, even Italy. Quebec did this last year.

An anonymous person tells us that the “only problem is, what happens when they do another round of bidding, and find out that there’s maybe one or two 10 year old, crusty proprietary apps that won’t run in Wine? [...] Still those specialized apps out there that were coded only for Windows years ago (either by a niche proprietary group or an in-house group that has since moved on) can be a bit or a problem for Linux adoption. It’s not Linux’s fault there, but then the business doesn’t always have the time, money, and/or manpower to have brand new code written and debugged.

Any suggestions?

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4 Comments

  1. oiaohm said,

    May 29, 2009 at 7:41 am

    Gravatar

    Contract in codeweavers to fix up wine to run the application.

    Or better yet replace the application with a open source internally made. It a 1 off expense still can be cheaper than MS licenses.

    Or finally find out how many other people need the same application and start a joint project in open source between all parties to replace it.

    End result last 2 are better you get more maintained applications less likely to cause problems.

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 29, 2009 at 7:48 am

    Gravatar

    Another option might be a temporary Windows applications server for workers to access Windows programs remotely until they are phased out or ported.

  3. Yuhong Bao said,

    June 2, 2009 at 11:45 pm

    Gravatar

    BTW, what do you think about slashdot now, given that it covered this?

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Same as before.

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