Bonum Certa Men Certa

SCO “Wants to Sue Linux Users Some More” After Another Mysterious Cash Injection

20 bucks on the table

Summary: SCO's business plan is consistent and the main party benefiting from it is still Microsoft

THE PREVIOUS post showed that Microsoft was investing in T3, which currently sues to challenge the dominance of GNU/Linux in mainframes.

The T3 story is similar to SCO's. As Groklaw now puts it, SCO "Wants to Sue Linux Users Some More" if the funding goes through. As Jones points out:

[D]id you catch the part about "other potential defendants" in addition to Novell, IBM, Red Hat and AutoZone? Everybody pretty much goes to unXis, leaving McBride as captain of the Good Ship SCO, and he gets to sue and sue and sue, while the assets have gone to unXis, so if SCO loses all the litigation, then the victors get no spoils and can't be be made whole by the legal process. But what particularly struck me is SCO saying that they will be able "to move the UNIX business forward with unXis in a very exciting way." "With unXis"? In what sense? It starts to hint that this is more a renaming, taking in some new management who seem to have financial expertise, and SCO keeps skipping along as unXis, with the dangerous litigation spun off safely into a litigation troll. Is that not what you see?

Ryan Paul wrote about this too:

SCO wants to keep waging legal war after $2.4M asset sale

SCO has secured a deal to sell off its major assets for $2.4 million to an IT consulting firm called Unxis. The agreement, which is still awaiting court approval, specifies that SCO retains the right to continue pursuing its litigation.

It is valuable to remember the Microsoft connection to SCO's latest funding source [1, 2, 3]. It is some dodgy entity which profited from the invasion of Iraq. From Heise Online:

The information on its new policy, which SCO hopes will achieve a last minute stay of execution from pending bankruptcy proceedings, also includes details of the new investors behind unXis. These include Gulf Cap Partners, backed by known investor Steven Norris, who has been interested in SCO since early 2008. It is joined by London-based investment company Merchant Bridge, which, according to its website, has up to now primarily been involved in Iraqi companies and banks. According to anti-globalisation observers at Corporate Watch, Merchant Bridge is among the top ten companies to profit from reconstruction work in Iraq.

In disclosing this information, SCO Group is clearly seeking to restore trust among businesses still deploying SCO products, such as SCO OpenServer, UnixWare and SCO Mobile Server. Almost all of SCO's technical support staff, software developers and Unix marketing staff will, according to the website, move to unXis.

According to Groklaw, SCO buys itself more time.

SCO has filed a Notification of Late Filing with the SEC. They're tied up in bankruptcy court, it appears, so they can only give a ballpark idea of how things are going in the revenue department. Think South. I know. Their prince will come, if they can just drag this out long enough for the appeals court to act in their favor, which intriguingly all the SCO shills seem to think is as fixed in the sky as the Big Dipper.

Red Hat already steps into this scene in order to shoot down SCO's attempt to escape a ticking clock (here is Red Hat's complaint as text).

Red Hat is letting the court know that it cares about its litigation, it intends to vigorously pursue it as soon as the bankruptcy stay is lifted, and its claim should not be thrown off a cliff without giving Red Hat notice and an opportunity to be heard.


Here's SCO's Objection to Red Hat's Claim [PDF], as text. Reading it, I get the picture, I think. SCO wants the bankruptcy judge to handle the Red Hat litigation, and since it filed similar objections to IBM, Novell and SUSE's claims, it wants to get out from under them too. That way they can go out and sue new people, I suppose, without all those damages slowing them down.

I know. Well, if you were SCO, wouldn't you want this bankruptcy judge to handle all your affairs? Could this really be the plan? They are the amazings, so why not? Their position is that the appeal of Novell will annoint SCO as the victors after all, and all the other cases will then fail against them, so the claims are worthless. SCOthink.

Groklaw wrote about the unXis APA Motion and later provided the full text.

“But at the end of the day, to Microsoft it was a good turn of events and one which was worth billions.”To what extent is Microsoft involved this time around? It paid SCO at least twice before. The first time it paid millions for a SCO source licence which was not required and the second time it injected investments into SCO by approaching BayStar. It got caught red handed.

Microsoft may pretend that there is a "new Microsoft", but this "new Microsoft" happens to be more criminal-minded than the "old" one. The TomTom lawsuit was a very good reminder. It completely destroyed the remnants of an illusion that Microsoft is not an aggressor, so people are waking up and feeling disgusted by Microsoft's new (and short-lived) business model.

SCO's share price rose when they first sued Linux. Little did the shareholders know what this strategy had in store. But at the end of the day, to Microsoft it was a good turn of events and one which was worth billions. To Microsoft, GNU/Linux is the #1 competitor. SCO-type FUD is the same strategy over and over again.


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