06.05.10

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Linux Oggcasts Speak About Novell’s Imminent Sale

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, Red Hat at 1:27 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Microphone with cover

Summary: “Linux Outlaws” and TLLTS voice their opinion on the subject of Novell takeover while The Register contributes disinformation

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s a listener of the Linux Outlaws audiocast (they make Ogg versions available, so the term “oggcast” from SFLS fits here), I happened to notice that Novell is discussed in last week’s episode, starting about 57 minutes from the beginning. We do not have a transcript and some of the details are inaccurate anyway, but one of the issues that come up is that Novell will sooner or later end up going on sale (not necessarily to be acquired by a company, possibly just a hedge fund which will take it private and possibly sell its assets gradually). At one stage they speak about Mono and Fab says that listeners are “dissing [MonoTouch] in the IRC”; Dan is right and Novell’s Mono has had the Android route going for quite some time, at least as an active plan [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13].

Another Linux show that I regularly listen to is TLLTS (Ogg versions available) and one listener analysed a recent episode in which Novell’s fate was discussed. The idea that Microsoft might buy Novell was brought up, leading to further thoughts:

If Microsoft Bought Novell

Then a thought occurred to me. If Microsoft did purchas Novell and then continue to distribute SuSE would that not invalidate their patent claims against other companies for using/selling GNU/Linux? Wouldn’t the GPL prevent them from distibuting SuSE while they hold patent suits against other companies for the same GPL’s software? I know more previsions were put in regarding this for version 3, but I wonder if even version 2 would uphold their inability to not file patent suite against companies using Linux and force an end to their FUD.

Meanwhile, regarding the SCO case, we learn from Groklaw that SCO has begun paying Novell:

It’s a start! SCO fi…na…l…ly pays the constructive trust monies, what it owes Novell, to Novell: $625,486.90.

The fate of Novell is very significant when it comes to this case against SCO, which can in turn affect companies like IBM and Red Hat. This takes us back to the ridiculous suggestion from The Register (with Microsoft tendencies as of late [1, 2, 3], especially from this author) that Red Hat might buy Novell. It would make no sense whatsoever, but some financial news sites foolishly quote those speculative claims from The Register.

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A Single Comment

  1. gnufreex said,

    June 5, 2010 at 6:12 pm

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    It could be really damaging for Linux if some equity fund buys Novell and then sells /ONLY/ network patents and UNIX copyright to Microsoft or some other patent troll. Microsoft would surely back that patent troll and convince them to make trouble to Linux vendors.

    Off course, if Microsoft buys entire Novell with SuSE included, then they probably can’t use patent warfare anymore. They need just patents chopped off, kinda like OpenGL patents that SGI sold to them. It would be wise for Canonical and Red Hat to outbid that kind of offer and split Novell patents among themselves. And contribute UNIX copyrights to FSF. What a story that would be: GNU kernel never got finished but FSF get the very kernel they were ought to replace :-).

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