EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS

05.30.08

Saving Students from The Latest Microsoft Lock-in (Live @ edu)

Posted in Free/Libre Software, Mail, Microsoft at 1:09 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Let them eat Vista

Two days ago Microsoft issued a press release heralding its plans to take over universities with its Windows-oriented, Live-branded offerings, which typically lock down students and bind them to Microsoft while they still are young. For background about this, see this older post.

We were contacted by a reader who urged us to respond. “With many of Microsoft’s minions surreptitiously pulling the plug on IMAP this summer while people are out it might be good to line up shots for the inevitable backlash,” he writes. “Or, in the best case, for use in preventative action,” he continues, “we should prepare lists.” He is pointing to this new success story of a commercial, closed source option.

He recommends that we start framing Free software alternatives, where applicable, as “the list of products Microsoft is trying to dethrone through feeble imitation and nasty intrithogue.” We were criticised by this reader before, especially for warning about Microsoft’s shots at FOSS without bothering to mention or to link to projects that Microsoft tries to fight, in which case the positive contribution to them is mere.

Here is the list of suggestions, as-is, which he passes on to us (making this a static page would seem too much like advertising). We omit only Scalix because it’s Xandros, which we boycott:

Server Applications

Kolab

Project homepage

Kolab is an open source, standards-based groupware server. It is a product of a series of contracts for the federal office for Security in the Information Technology in the German Government. Support contracts are available from several sources including ones in Sweden. It is maintained by the Kolab consortium.

Citadel

Project homepage

Citadel is fully open source with end-to-end GPLv3. It has been production grade for several years.

Bongo

Project homepage

Descendant of the Hula project.

Zimbra

Project homepage

Zimbra is owned by Yahoo! as of 2007. Though the recent bid against Yahoo! by Zimbra’s main competitor puts the product at risk. If the deal goes through, given the competitor’s history it is likely to be sidelined like FoxPro or broken like HotMail, to name just two examples.

Open-Xchange

Project homepage
Open-Xchange is available under dual license GPL + proprietary.

Client Applications

Sunbird

Project homepage

Sunbird is very easy to use, open source calendar client. It can handle both stand-alone calendars and shared calendars using SQLlite, CalDAV and the standard iCalendar. Shared calendars can be accessed via the net or via the file system. The interface is written in XUL, JavaScript, and CSS

Thunderbird

Project homepage

Thunderbird is a very easy to use, open source mail client. It can handle IMAP and POP, with options like encryption. It is readily extensible and many plug-ins exist to provide essentials like culling duplicate messages or PKI encryption.

Kontact

Project homepage

Kontact is very easy to use, open source calendar client from. It can handle both stand-alone calendars and shared calendars using SQLlite, CalDAV and the standard iCalendar. Shared calendars can be accessed via the net or via the file system. The interface is written in XUL, JavaScript, and CSS. [correction: the client interface/program is implemented with Qt and C++]

Google Calendar

Project homepage

Google is easy to use and supports data standards, but it is server-based and the server is located on the other side of the Atlantic. KPlato

KPlato

Project homepage

KPlato is a standalone project management and planning tool. It has many useful functions including Gantt charts, task lists with resource allocations per task, task allocations per resource, cost planning with configurable cut-off date and periodicity, and more.

On Microsoft’s dumping technique to ensure lock-in in schools:

  1. Bill Gates’ Retirement Merely a Political Lock-in Crusade
  2. Microsoft ‘Buys’ Dubai Away from GNU/Linux, Calls it “Charity”; Paris Also?
  3. OOXML Sins and “Charity” Against GNU/Linux
  4. It’s Not Dumping Because They Call it “Charity”
  5. Boosting Windows Vista Sales Using AIDS
  6. “Let Them Eat Vista…”
  7. Mysterious New Moves in the Gates Foundation
  8. Microsoft Carries on Dumping to Make Its Products a ‘Standard’
  9. The Takeaways from the Giveaways
  10. Microsoft Must Be Absolutely Terrified
Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one

6 Comments

  1. Michael said,

    May 30, 2008 at 2:40 am

    Gravatar

    No Evolution? Is that just because it’s Novell now? It is GPL afterall, and came from elsewhere originally and is a big part of GNOME. Does it have mono in it perhaps?

    I’m just curious since Hula was originally an internal Novell product, yet that is listed here.

    (and i worked on evo for 6 years too, but i haven’t looked at it for nearly 3 years, so i don’t know if it’s gone down the ‘.net’ route it was contemplating back then)

  2. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 30, 2008 at 2:47 am

    Gravatar

    I’ve just pasted the list as it was sent to me. I stripped off Scalix. Evolution seems to be on the slow road to Microsoft patent infection, but that’s probably not the reason it’s left out.

    Actually, let me shed some more light on Monome. I’ll do a post in half an hour.

    As for Bongo, its developer is defending Microsoft and Novell quite relentlessly in this Web site.

  3. Alex H. said,

    May 30, 2008 at 5:04 am

    Gravatar

    No, I don’t defend Microsoft.

    I defend free software who you defame because of supposed links. I also disagree that Novell is an “enemy” of free software: while you may not like everything they do, you cannot ignore their substantial contributions to the software that you personally run on your desktop.

    It’s sad that you’re unable to understand, let alone tolerate, different perspectives to your own, and it’s extremely sad that you attack free software projects on the basis of your biased views.

  4. eggs said,

    May 30, 2008 at 10:00 am

    Gravatar

    Alex,

    who is paying you?

    love,

    eggs

  5. Heller said,

    May 31, 2008 at 7:45 am

    Gravatar

    about Kontact : “The interface is written in XUL, JavaScript, and CSS”

    hmm, Kontact is part of the KDE project and it is written with the KDE (QT / C++) libraries

  6. Roy Schestowitz said,

    May 31, 2008 at 10:58 am

    Gravatar

    Yes, Heller, you are right. I just posted it as it was sent to me in a rush and didn’t take any time to verify. I’ll correct this now.

What Else is New


  1. Aurélien Pétiaud's ILO Case (EPO Appeal) an Early Sign That ILO Protects Abusers and Power, Not Workers

    A famous EPO ‘disciplinary’ case is recalled; it’s another one of those EPO-leaning rulings from AT-ILO, which not only praises Battistelli amid very serious abuses but also lies on his behalf, leaving workers with no real access to justice but a mere illusion thereof



  2. LOT Network is a Wolf in Sheep's Clothing

    Another reminder that the "LOT" is a whole lot more than it claims to be and in effect a reinforcer of the status quo



  3. 'Nokification' in Hong Kong and China (PRC)

    Chinese firms that are struggling resort to patent litigation, in effect repeating the same misguided trajectories which became so notorious in Western nations because they act as a form of taxation, discouraging actual innovation



  4. CIPU is Amplifying Misleading Propaganda From the Chamber of Commerce

    Another lobbying event is set up to alarm lawmakers and officials, telling them that the US dropped from first to twelfth using some dodgy yardstick which favours patent extremists



  5. Patent Law Firms That Profit From Software Patent Applications and Lawsuits Still 'Pull a Berkheimer' to Attract Business in Vain

    The Alice-inspired (Supreme Court) 35 U.S.C. § 101 remains unchanged, but the patent microcosm endlessly mentions a months-old decision from a lower court (than the Supreme Court) to 'sell' the impression that everything is changing and software patents have just found their 'teeth' again



  6. A Year After TC Heartland the Patent Microcosm is Trying to 'Dilute' This Supreme Court's Decision or Work Around It

    IAM, Patent Docs, Managing IP and Patently-O want more litigation (especially somewhere like the Eastern District of Texas), so in an effort to twist TC Heartland they latch onto ZTE and BigCommerce cases



  7. Microsoft Attacks the Vulnerable Using Software Patents in Order to Maintain Fear and Give the Perception of Microsoft 'Safety'

    The latest patent lawsuits from Microsoft and its patent trolls (which it financially backs); these are aimed at feeble and vulnerable rivals of Microsoft



  8. Links 19/5/2018: Mesa 18.0.4 and Vim 8.1

    Links for the day



  9. Système Battistelli (ENArque) at the EPO is Inspired by Système Lamy in Saint-Germain-en Laye

    Has the political culture of Battistelli's hometown in France contaminated the governance of the EPO?



  10. In Australia the Productivity Commission Decides/Guides Patent Law

    IP Australia, the patent office of Australia, considers abolishing "innovation patents" but has not done so yet (pending consultation)



  11. Fishy Things Noticed Ahead of the Passage of a Lot of EPO Budget (Applicants' Money) to Battistelli's Other (and Simultaneous) Employer

    Observations and odd facts regarding the affairs of the council in St Germain; it certainly looks like Battistelli as deputy mayor and the mayor (Arnaud Péricard) are attempting to hide something



  12. Links 18/5/2018: AsteroidOS 1.0 Released, More Snyk/Black Duck FUD

    Links for the day



  13. Today's EPO Financially Rewards Abuses and Violations of the Law

    Battistelli shredded the European Patent Convention (EPC) to pieces and he is being rewarded for it, perpetuating a pattern of abuses (and much worse) being rewarded by the European Patent Organisation



  14. So-Called 'System Battistelli' is Destroying the EPO, Warn Insiders

    Low-quality patent grants by the EPO are a road to nowhere but a litigious climate in Europe and an unattractive EPO



  15. Rise in Patent Trolls' Activity in Germany Noted Amid Declining Patent Quality at the EPO

    The UPC would turn Europe into some sort of litigation ‘super-state’ — one in which national patent laws are overridden by some central, immune-from-the-law bureaucracy like the EPO; but thankfully the UPC continues its slow collapse



  16. EPO's Battistelli Taking Days Off Work for Political 'Duties' (Parties) in His French Theatre Where He'll Bring Buckets of EPO Budget (EPO Stakeholders' Money)

    More tales from Saint-Germain-en-Laye...



  17. Links 16/5/2018: Cockpit 168, GCompris 0.91, DHCP Bug

    Links for the day



  18. The EPO's 'Inventor Award' Scam: Part III

    An addendum to the "inventor of the year" affair, namely the case of Remmal



  19. Apple and Microsoft Are Still Suing Companies -- Using Patents of Course -- Which 'Dare' Compete (by Leveraging GNU/Linux)

    The vanity of proprietary software giants — as the latest news serves to reveal — targeting companies with patent lawsuits, both directly and indirectly



  20. The Anti-PTAB (Patent Quality), Anti-§ 101 Lobby is Losing Its Mind and It Has Become Amusing to Observe

    The rants about the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB), the courts and even the law itself have reached laughable levels; this reveals that the real agenda of patent maximalists is endless litigation and their methods boil down to those of an angry mob, not legal professionals



  21. EPO Has Become Overzealous About Software Patents, Probably More So Than Almost Anywhere Else

    The promotion of an extreme patent regime in Europe continues unabated; whether it succeeds or not depends on what EPO examiners and citizens of Europe can do



  22. Links 15/5/2018: Black Duck's Latest FUD and the EFF's EFFail FUD Debunked Further

    Links for the day



  23. Xiaomi, Samsung, TCL and Others Demonstrate That in a World With an Abundance of Stupid Patents Like Design Patents Nobody is Safe

    The "Cult of Patents" (typically a cabal of law firms looking to have everything on the planet patented) has created a battlefield in the mobile world; every company, once it gets big enough, faces a lot of patent lawsuits and dying companies resort to using whatever is in their "portfolio" to destroy everyone else inside the courtroom (or demand 'protection' money to avert lawsuits)



  24. A Google-Centric and Google-Led Patent Pool Won't Protect GNU/Linux But Merely 'Normalise' Software Patents

    Patent pools, which are basically the wrong solution to a very clear problem, continue to expand and promote themselves; the real solution, however, is elimination of abstract patents, notably software patents



  25. The Patent Microcosm is Still Looking for Ways to Bypass CAFC/PTAB Invalidation of Many US Patents

    In pursuit of patent maximalism (i.e. a status quo wherein US patents — no matter their age — are presumed valid and beyond scrutiny) pundits resort to new angles or attack vectors, ranging from the bottom (IPRs) to the top (Supreme Court)



  26. Inter Partes Reviews (IPRs) Make the United States a Much Better Place for Innovation and Creation

    Jim Logan of Personal Audio LLC (a patent troll) suffers one final blow and other news of interest serves to show just how valuable IPRs have become in the US



  27. The EPO Has Become Extremely Corrupt and Dishonest

    Corruption at the EPO is becoming an easy-to-see epidemic/problem, even if much of the media turns a blind eye to it (partly because of the corruption that's aimed at controlling media coverage)



  28. Reader's Post: The Last Delusion of Benoît Battistelli Before His Departure on June 30th

    “The last delusion of Battistelli before his departure next June 30″ — an informal article contributed by a Techrights reader



  29. It Doesn't Take a Genius to See That Microsoft Still Attacks GNU/Linux With Patents to Make Billions of Dollars in 'Protection' Money

    Intellectual Ventures, Finjan, RPX, and other Microsoft-connected trolls cannot be countered by LOT Network and the likes of it (notably OIN); Microsoft continues to shrewdly distribute patents to trolls, offering 'protection' from them (for a fee) and pressuring OEMs to bundle Microsoft 'apps' or risk retaliatory patent lawsuitsIntellectual Ventures, Finjan, RPX, and other Microsoft-connected trolls cannot be countered by LOT Network and the likes of it (notably OIN); Microsoft continues to shrewdly distribute patents to trolls, offering 'protection' from them (for a fee) and pressuring OEMs to bundle Microsoft 'apps' or risk retaliatory patent lawsuits



  30. A Sham and a Scam: How Patent Extremists Continue to Promote a Mohawks and Allergan Ploy Against PTAB, Even After Oil States

    Watchtroll carries on promoting the 'case' of Allergan, which is grossly misusing tribal immunity to protect dodgy patents that it uses to deny access to medicine


CoPilotCo

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time

CoPilotCo

Recent Posts