Politics, politics (Novell-Microsoft Deal)

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Politics, politics (Novell-Microsoft Deal)

Post by Calum » Fri Nov 03, 2006 7:45 am

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/11/03 ... use_linux/

so... microsoft likes suse. what next?

what do we think of this over in the void-nook?

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Post by Void Main » Fri Nov 03, 2006 9:20 am

My 1st thought before knowing any of the details was "hmm, Microsoft may finally be seeing the future, dogs and cats living together, hell must have had central air installed, etc". My 2nd thought after learning a little bit more about the situation is a little less optimistic. I'm not going to remove SUSE from the forum list just yet though and will try and learn more about the situation. I think there could be serious issues but I'm not sure about it just yet.

A couple of articles about it on Groklaw:
http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?stor ... 2175508403
http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?stor ... 3073628401

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Post by Calum » Sat Nov 04, 2006 8:40 am

remove suse from the forum list? that seems a bit drastic! i thought this forum was about linux, not politics!

on the other hand, i can see clearly how this is another clever but insidious microsoft ploy to divide and discredit linux and free software in general. essentially they seem to be trying to conquer by degrees, by sneaking into the flock at night disguised in sheep's clothing etc

i think i can stop since i am just going to get even worse in terms of half assed mixed metaphors, but suffice it to say that i am also sceptical about this. It does seem like suse/novell is the dodgy back door with the rusty lock of the normally robust linux world.

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Post by Void Main » Sat Nov 04, 2006 11:07 am

These forums are about Linux and and GPL software. I don't consider Microsoft and Novell making a deal to be "politics", at least not the kind of politics I refer to in my forum rules. Maybe I should have made a distinction between corporate politics and government politics. It's the government politics that I don't want to deal with here. Now, what would cause me to remove SUSE from the forum list is if they are any way breaking the GPL. I haven't seen any evidence that they are to this point but there is speculation that they "could" be by Eben Moglen, but that is before he has had a chance to actually read the details of the agreement.

Also, if they are shipping software that all distros are shipping that they have conceded to Microsoft to be covered by Microsoft patents and the agreement only provides protection to SUSE from Microsoft then I would pull the distro off the forums. Lindows is also Linux and they don't have a place here. These forums are more or less for Free/free Linux distros and GPL software. I don't really want the commercial Red Hat distros discussed here either. That's what people pay Red Hat for, they can get their support from Red Hat on those distros. I know you could nit pick one way or another whether something is Free/free and meets my guidelines but basically it comes down to the distros I choose for and no reasons are needed. :)

Now, until it is proven one way or the other which side of the line SUSE comes down on the issue can certainly be discussed here. I would like to hear more facts on the agreement and what they mean in simple terms. I've been trying to keep up with it by reading the Groklaw articles but there is much debate over there on what the agreement means. What do you think? Novell conceding to Microsoft that there is some patented software in Linux that is distributed by all the distros is a bad deal for Linux. I would say this software should be identified and removed as soon as possible.

The problem is, not everyone may agree that certain software is covered by Microsoft patents. I think Samba falls into this category. If Novell has an agreement to get some sort of patent protection from Microsoft on Samba then that is more or less admitting that Samba violates Microsofts patents when nobody else in the Free software world believes it does. That gives Microsoft some lawsuit leverage. Don't you think this is bad? I don't really consider this corporate politics even, it's more like typical Microsoft corporate shenanigans.

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Post by cdhgold » Sat Nov 04, 2006 3:43 pm

Just to add my input to this as someone who has been a loyal and strong supporter of Novell for many years. I hope that going forward this will be nothing but good for the linux community. Yes I do admit that my initial response to this is that while I hope and think it will be good but it does make me little nervous till we see just what form this takes. Novell for many years has been a thorn in Microsfot side by making a superior product (ADS aka Attempted Directory sH$% is nothing more than a bad reverse engineering of E-Directory). I do not think Novell as a company would turn its back on the linux community and allow Microshaft to do harm to the distro, its standing in the community or the community at large. My hope from this is that we get better interoperability between the two worlds which would be for the benefit of all.

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Post by Void Main » Sat Nov 04, 2006 5:39 pm

cdhgold wrote:Novell for many years has been a thorn in Microsfot side by making a superior product (ADS aka Attempted Directory sH$% is nothing more than a bad reverse engineering of E-Directory).
Novell has had many superior technologies and in every case Microsoft came out with a competing inferior technology that crushed Novell's superior technology. How many times have we seen Microsoft make "friendly" deals in the past only to embrace, extend and extinguish? Linux is a little bit different in that they can't really sue it out of existence. They could sue the vendor backed distros out of existence though, not because they are right, but because they have way more money and 500 pound gorillas for lawyers. Like I said, I will hold back for now but it makes me extremely sick to my stomach thinking about what these guys could be up to.

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Post by cdhgold » Sat Nov 04, 2006 5:53 pm

The thoughts of what MS may be up to sicken me also but I have faith in Novell to hold them from going too far. Time will tell if my faith in Novell is justified or misplaced. Over the years others have questioned my faith in Novell and time has shown me correct every time so far. I hope it continues to do so.

Chris

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Post by JoeDude » Sun Nov 05, 2006 9:31 am

It is possible though novell just signed a deal with the devil and all in all are actually powerless to do anything other than produce SUSE for MS. As has been said, we'll have to wait and see.

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Post by Void Main » Mon Nov 06, 2006 10:58 am

Another good Groklaw article on the subject:
http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?stor ... 3201234813

I wish SUSE/Novell would respond to our fears.

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Post by insomnia » Mon Nov 06, 2006 9:33 pm

Void Main wrote:Another good Groklaw article on the subject:
http://www.groklaw.net/article.php?stor ... 3201234813

I wish SUSE/Novell would respond to our fears.
I doubt they will ever explain why they're raiping GNU/FOSS and mostly GPL...
Any future code created using this marriage will be tainted and never gpl compatible. SUSE is just dead. I your case I would remove its forum...


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Post by Void Main » Tue Nov 07, 2006 10:36 am

I am really close to yanking SUSE. I'm just not seeing any positives in this whatsoever. Rather than lose anything that's been posted in there I will just lock everything. Should I have been too hasty I can always unlock it.

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Post by JoeDude » Tue Nov 07, 2006 12:30 pm

I remember a while back, maybe you do as well. A certain corporation packaged some classic video games which were owned by atari. You know, asteroids, tank, things of that nature. Regardless, they came with the OS. Atari sued, this corporation bought Atari and in so doing, also bought the rights to these games. Litigation over. Sound familiar?

The problem here is a bit more decentralized...good word, decentralized is about as appropriate as you could use. Since there are few (Suse, Ubuntu, Red Hat0 which are actually produced by organizations, they can't really target all distros, due to the decentralization of the production of code. That is also the problem, bring down the big ones, and what suddenly happens? We have a kernel, and that's about it. If you dig runlevel 4 and lower, I guess that's cool.

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Post by Void Main » Tue Nov 07, 2006 1:04 pm

I don't really have any fear whatsoever. The best distro will always exist (Debian). Besides, Microsoft would actually have to say what they believe is in Linux that is covered by a Microsoft patent and then you would have two choices. 1) Make them prove it and/or 2) remove that piece. I don't really believe there is anything in any of the distros that I use or have used that fall into that category. The only thing I have heard talked about is "Mono" which I have opposed from the beginning and never have used. Who knows what is covered by the "agreement". If Microsoft doesn't say then all it really is is a FUD campaign to make people be afraid to be sued if they use Linux (at least any Linux distro other than SUSE).

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Post by Void Main » Tue Nov 07, 2006 11:18 pm


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