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

07.27.08

Microsoft Hates Apache, Wanted to Sue It, Now Wants to Ruin It

Posted in Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Patents, SCO, Security, Vista, Windows at 2:54 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

The EEE theory

Yesterday we presented various possible explanations for Microsoft's investment in its direct competitor, Apache. It would be unnatural to believe that a commercial entity did this for goodwill alone. There is surely something to be gained; an expectation, condition, an opportunity. It is important to understand motive.

As expected, the discussion about this subject resumes, most notably in Technocrat (Bruce Perens’ site). He has been pursuing this for quite some time as he hawked Apache. His immediate instinct was negative and he now shares the story about Microsoft planning to sue Apache. As a high-level official, he knew something confidential.

And then I got stuck with keeping the secret of Microsoft’s plans to bring suit against Open Source developers, for years. All of that time, I felt that I was being disloyal to my own community. This finally came out after I was long gone from HP.

Microsoft backed SCO’s lawsuit after releasing this information to HP.

For information about Microsoft’s connection with SCO, start here. More recent developments are covered in [1, 2, 3].

The incident that Perens refers to was properly documented by Joe Barr, who was never shy to expose Microsoft’s bad behaviour [1, 2, 3].

The memo — its full text is provided later in the story, along with HP’s response — briefly explains a patent cross-licensing deal between HP and Microsoft. By itself, that’s not a big deal, especially since it was sent two years ago. But the memo asserts that “Microsoft will soon be launching a patent-based legal offensive against Linux and other free software projects.” Leaders in the open source community have been warning of such attacks for some time. The memo reveals there may be very good reason for the worry.

That’s the same HP that now has some level of influence/control over GNOME, engages in collusion schemes with Microsoft, spreads Silverlight (i.e. poisons the open Web), promotes Microsoft Web services, and lobbies for Microsoft's OOXML, essentially intervening with a process it should stay out of.

Here comes the interesting part.

Yesterday it was argued by some people that Microsoft could or would ‘extend’ Apache to better suit Microsoft’s business goals. Here is one newer speculation.

Ladies & Gentlemen I give you Web 2.0, the new and improved thin client cum cloud computing model where all you need to do anything is a browser and a fat pipe.

And what do browsers send GET requests to?

Penny dropping yet?

So Microsoft 7 ships with what used to be once the Berkeley TCP/IP stack for network communications and with what used to be once the Apache web server for Web 2.0, in EXACTLY the same way that Internet Explorer was bundled in the past, Web 2.0 requires a browser to be bundled with the OS and integrated into it.

When I say “Microsoft 7″ I mean of course every version from Microsoft 7 Embedded to Microsoft 7 Godzilla Enterprise Server, they will all ship with the default, ooh, let’s pick a catchy name, MicroSoft Internet Foundry, so default MSIE and MSIF neatly complementing each other.

By 2011 we can have MS in Court facing anti trust charges, but as with MSIE by then the damage will be done, and maybe Mitchell Baker will be doing a Marc Andressen and praising MS for embracing a Open Source code and making the net a better place.

To be fair, if MS had not embraced and extended the Berkeley TCP/IP stack the internet as we know it today would be a very different place, and that includes the Apache web server as we know it today.

In the meantime…

All your Web 2.0 are belong to us.

signed, MicroSoft.

One person who was in touch with us a few months ago predicted that Microsoft would ‘extend’ TCP/IP with DRM (or TPM). The DRM infrastructure and the wholly-new stack that come in Vista may only be a preparation for this. See this old article:

Researchers with Symantec’s advanced threat team poked through Vista’s new network stack in several recent builds of the still-under-construction operating system, and found several bugs — some of which have been fixed, including a few in Monday’s release — as well as broader evidence that the rewrite of the networking code could easily lead to problems.

If it’s not broken, why ‘fix’ it? Why does Microsoft rewrite the stack from scratch, possibly under the guise of “security”, where security means control?

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

5 Comments

  1. Victor Soliz said,

    July 28, 2008 at 7:48 am

    Gravatar

    I think, this is all about DRM and not about suing Apache, MS might sue Apache, one day but it will not be in relation to this. It is quite certain the priority here is not (MS’) imaginary property else they wouldn’t have accepted the L-GPL. You can say this is for a bigger, much more evil project…

  2. Aaron Farr said,

    July 28, 2008 at 10:02 am

    Gravatar

    You know, you could always just, I dont’ know, maybe go ask some of the Apache committers what’s going on rather than say, make stuff up. This is getting ridiculous.

    First off, Microsoft could ship with Apache software _before_ the sponsorship. It’s already open source. They get _nothing_ from the sponsorship money that helps them get the web server running on Windows, so I don’t see this line of thinking working out.

    The linked article is clearly just speculation and not even good speculation. You people need to work harder on your conspiracy theories.

  3. Roy Schestowitz said,

    July 28, 2008 at 10:30 am

    Gravatar

    Aaron, I never suggested it was about committal of code. I don’t think it is. Microsoft doesn’t commit to the Free Desktop either, but it paid a lot of money to Novell and it has been getting its money’s worth.

    You know, Microsoft has also been sending the Firefox team at Mozilla some cakes and invited them to Redmond to work on Windows compatibility (at the expense of time spent on other platforms). And then there’s Zend.

    People live and learn. I’ve seen Microsoft back-stabbing partners time after time after time. It’s not a charity and it’s not even ethical.

    I received this E-mail from a friend a few hours ago (partly related to this):


    Basically, SCO was baseless and is kept alive by MS funding and MS party activists. However, I’m sure at some point it became apparent that it could work if there were real licensing issues to be found. So: a short “truce” with Novell to spend 5 years frantically injecting licensed technology into every possible project. e.g. GNOME, Ubuntu

    Apache has been the major obstacle for following through on the strategy outlined in the “Halloween Documents” It keeps TCP/IP and HTTP on top. However, I notice that more and more MS shops are quietly (secretly) pulling the plug on other standards like DNS, at least in-house and behind the smoke screen of a firewall and ‘security’.

    One thing that just occurs to me is that this distracts from the catastrophic bank failures in Europe induced by ideologs shoehorning MS Sharepoint into banking without regard even to basic phases of software engineering or product evaluation. Mismanagement.

  4. Allan Frisby said,

    December 4, 2008 at 4:44 am

    Gravatar

    This sounds kinda kooky – I don’t disagree with anything you’re saying, but you have to accept that, businesses, as they have been doing for thousands of years normally try to uphold their interests, whichever way possible.

    This just reads like a conspiracy nut’s rambling about someone what may have wronged them in the past. The whole ‘Microsoft is evil’ is even more tired – there’s many reasons why they hold a 90% share in world desktops, the one that sticks out the most is that manufacturers and corporations don’t want to roll out organic, ever changing, open-source applications. They would prefer to pay an up-front fee for something that may not be perfect, but generally everything built for it ‘just works’.

    Just something to think about. Also, I am a 100% linux user, fyi. Not because I have something against Microsoft, but because it doesn’t offer me anything I can’t figure out for myself on linux.

  5. pcolon said,

    December 4, 2008 at 5:54 am

    Gravatar

    that may not be perfect, but generally everything built for it ‘just works’.

    Why then would Microsoft need the Mojave advertisements?
    Why haven’t they fixed Vista? It’s been 2 years and all you hear is “Windows 7″

What Else is New


  1. Links 21/1/2018: Wine 3.0 Coverage, KaOS 2018.01, Red Hat Among 'Admired Companies'

    Links for the day



  2. Blockchain Patents Are a Catastrophe in the Making as Trolls and Aggressors Accumulate Them

    As patents pertaining to blockchains continue to be granted -- even in defiance of Alice/Section 101 -- it seems likely that patent wars will sooner or later erupt, involving some large banks, IBM, and patent trolls associated with the notorious Erich Spangenberg



  3. Qualcomm/Broadcom/NXP Combination Would Become a Disastrous Patent Thicket Which Benefits Nobody

    Worried by the prospect of mega-mergers and takeovers which would put far too much market power (and monopoly through patents) in one place, governments and corporations speak out



  4. Patent Litigation in East Asia: Huawei, Samsung, HTC, Nintendo and COLOPL

    A quick look at some high-profile cases in which large Asian firms are embroiled; it seems clear that litigation activities have shifted eastwards (where actual production is done)



  5. Patent Litigation in the US is Down Sharply and Patent Trolls' Demise Has Much to Do With It

    Docket Navigator and Lex Machina both show a significant decline in litigation -- a trend which is likely to carry on now that TC Heartland is in tact (not for just half a year but a whole year) and PTAB completes another record year



  6. Cheating the US Patent System is a Lot Harder After TC Heartland

    Some new examples of tricks (and sometimes cheats) attempted by patent claimants and their representatives; it does not go as well as they hoped



  7. RPX Might Soon be Owned by Patent Troll Erich Spangenberg

    RPX, whose top executives are leaving and business is gradually dying, might end up as another 'asset' of patent trolls



  8. Patent Quality (Not Numbers) as an Asset: Oppositions, Appeals and Rejections at the EPO

    Benoît Battistelli wants a rubber-stamping operation (like INPI) rather than a functional patent office, but oppositions at the Office prove to be fruitful and many erroneously-granted patents are -- by extrapolation -- already being revoked (affecting, in retrospect, Battistelli's so-called 'results')



  9. Links 19/1/2018: Linux Journalism Fund, Grsecurity is SLAPPing Again

    Links for the day



  10. The EPO Ignores This Week's Decision Which Demonstrates Patent Scope Gone Awry; Software Patents Brought Up Again

    The worrisome growth of European Patents (EPs) — a 40% jump in one year in spite of decline in the number of patent applications — is a symptom of the poor judgment, induced largely by bad policies that impede examiners’ activities for the sake of so-called ‘production’; this week's decision regarding CRISPR is another wake-up call and software patents too need to be abolished (as a whole), in lieu with the European Patent Convention (EPC)



  11. WesternGeco v ION Geophysical (at the US Supreme Court) Won't Affect Patent Scope

    As WesternGeco v ION Geophysical is the main if not sole ‘major’ patent case that the US Supreme Court will deal with, it seems safe to say that nothing substantial will change for patent scope in the United States this year



  12. Links 18/1/2018: MenuLibre 2.1.4, Git 2.16 Released

    Links for the day



  13. Microsoft, Masking/Hiding Itself Behind Patent Trolls, is Still Engaging in Patent Extortion

    A review of Microsoft's ugly tactics, which involve coercion and extortion (for businesses to move to Azure and/or for OEMs to preload Microsoft software) while Microsoft-connected patent trolls help hide the "enforcement" element in this whole racket



  14. Patent Prosecution Highway: Low-Quality Patents for High-Frequency Patent Aggressors

    The EPO's race to the bottom of patent quality, combined with a "need for speed", is a recipe for disaster (except for litigation firms, patent bullies, and patent trolls)



  15. Press Coverage About the EPO Board Revoking Broad's CRISPR Patent

    Even though there's some decent coverage about yesterday's decision (e.g. from The Scientist), the patent microcosm googlebombs the news with stuff that serves to distract from or distort the outcome



  16. Links 17/1/2018: HHVM 3.24, WordPress 4.9.2

    Links for the day



  17. No Patents on Life (CRISPR), Said EPO Boards of Appeal Just a Few Hours Ago

    Broad spectacularly loses its key case, which may soon mean that any other patents on CRISPR too will be considered invalid



  18. Only Two Weeks on the Job, Judge Patrick Corcoran is Already Being Threatened by EPO Management

    The attack on a technical judge who is accused of relaying information many people had already relayed anyway (it was gossip at the whole Organisation for years) carries on as he is again being pushed around, just as many people predicted



  19. EPO Board of Appeal Has an Opportunity to Stop Controversial Patents on Life

    Patent maximalism at the EPO can be pushed aback slightly if the European appeal board decides to curtail CRISPR patents in a matter of days



  20. Links 16/1/2018: More on Barcelona, OSI at 20

    Links for the day



  21. 2018 Will be an Even Worse Year for Software Patents Because the US Supreme Court Shields Alice

    The latest picks (reviewed cases) of the Supreme Court of the United States signal another year with little or no hope for the software patents lobby; PTAB too is expected to endure after a record-breaking year, in which it invalidated a lot of software patents that had been erroneously granted



  22. Patent Trolls (Euphemised as “Public IP Companies”) Are Dying in the United States, But the Trouble Isn't Over

    The demise of various types of patent trolls, including publicly-traded trolls, is good news; but we take stock of the latest developments in order to better assess the remaining threat



  23. EPO Management and Team UPC Carry on Lying About Unified Patent Court, Sinking to New Lows in the Process

    At a loss for words over the loss of the Unitary Patent, Team UPC and Team Battistelli now blatantly lie and even get together with professional liars such as Watchtroll



  24. China Tightens Its Knot of Restrictive Rules and Patents

    Overzealous patent aggressors and patent trolls in China, in addition to an explosion in low-quality patents, may simply discourage companies from doing production/manufacturing there



  25. Microsoft's Patent Racket Has Just Been Broadened to Threaten GNU/Linux Users Who Don't Pay Microsoft 'Rents'

    Microsoft revisits its aggressive patent strategy which it failed to properly implement 12 years ago with Novell; it wants to 'collect' a patent tax on GNU/Linux and it uses patent trolls to make that easier



  26. EPO Scandals Played a Considerable Role in Sinking the Unified Patent Court (UPC)

    Today's press coverage about the UPC reinforces the idea that the EPO saga, culminating in despicable attacks on Patrick Corcoran (a judge), may doom the UPC once and for all (unless one believes Team UPC)



  27. J Nicholas Gross Thinks Professors Stop Being Professors If They're Not Patent Extremists Like Him

    The below-the-belt tactics of patent trolls and their allies show no signs of abatement and their tone reveals growing irritation and frustration (inability to sue and extort companies as easily as they used to)



  28. The US Supreme Court Has Just Denied Another Chance to Deal With a Case Similar to Alice (Potentially Impacting § 101)

    There is no sign that software patents will be rendered worthwhile any time in the near future, but proponents of software patents don't give up



  29. Litigation Roundup: Nintendo, TiVo, Apple, Samsung, Huawei, Philips, UMC

    The latest high-profile legal battles, spanning a growing number of nations and increasingly representing a political shift as well



  30. Roundup of Patent News From Canada, South America and Australia

    A few bits and pieces of news from around the world, serving to highlight patent trends in parts of the world where the patent offices haven't much international clout/impact


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