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


Increased Investment in Microsoft SUSE

Posted in GNU/Linux, Interoperability, Microsoft, Novell, Scalix, Servers, SLES/SLED, Windows, Xandros at 6:09 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


“Our partnership with Microsoft continues to expand.”

Ron Hovsepian, Novell CEO

Along with Novell, Microsoft continues hijacking GNU/Linux. A press release titled “Microsoft and Novell Expand Successful Interoperability Relationship” has just gone public. The Boston Globe seems to have known about it in advance, so it quickly issued an article which glorifies this disgusting betrayal of the Free software movement and the many thousands of developers involved.

Microsoft Corp.’s unlikely alliance with Linux software vendor Novell Inc. of Waltham is getting stronger.


Microsoft will resell the licenses to corporate users of Microsoft’s Windows operating system to help customers who want to run both Linux and Windows inside their data centers.


Microsoft executives alleged that Linux contained stolen Microsoft intellectual property. Linux supporters said the charge was intended to scare people away from switching from Microsoft Windows to Linux.

What the article does not state is that “interoperability” is just a cryptic code word for “software patents coupons”. Here is what Microsoft calls it:

“I’ve heard from Novell sales representatives that Microsoft sales executives have started calling the Suse Linux Enterprise Server coupons “royalty payments””

Matt Asay, April 21st, 2008

Darryl Taft at eWeek has covered this also, but he offers no criticism of this now-advanced anti-GNU/Linux collusion.

The collaboration is nothing but another attempt to stop Red Hat, Ubuntu and the rest of them, ensuring all of GNU/Linux is taxed and policed by Microsoft. Just watch what they do in China where software patents are not even legitimate [1, 2, 3, 4]. Here is a new and interesting comment from Linux Today:

The #1 Linux myth is: Microsoft is not trying to suppress Linux (especially desktop Linux)

That’s it. Eliminate the Microsoft influence and Linux takes off like a rocket.

Linux is already much better technology and it is getting stronger.

According to eWeek, FUD monger Susan Hauser added some further clues. Is says that “[a]lthough the companies announced the incremental investment on August 20, Hauser said the investments will not take effect until Nov. 1, 2008, and between now and then Microsoft and Novell will solicit customer input on various aspects of the effort.” Of course, PR purposes are part of this whole announcement. We’ll come to this in a moment.

Why don’t the reporters delve deeper into the issues? It’s just a shallow re-delivery of the message from this press release. It’s not an isolated example of poor reporting that either ignores or does not understand the issues. Here is an example from Linux.com, which covered the Microsoft-occupied Scalix last night.

Unless Scalix changes its pricing plan, I recommend reserving Scalix for small businesses with few users who wanted to try email and groupware solutions for Exchange capabilities.

Well, if a company has to compete not only by developing a rival to Microsoft but by also while paying per-unit royalties to Microsoft [1, 2], how can it compete? It’s part of a strategic pattern.

Had the article mentioned these problems, it would be clear why Scalix is pricey and one product to steer away from. Its agreement with Microsoft was its death knell. Scalix is owned by Xandros now and it’ also engaged in protocols licensing, i.e. software patents. It’s not free software.

The purpose of the latest step from Microsoft (and Novell) was probably to tie more companies to mythical software patents in GNU/Linux, but there’s more to it. It”s also about the illusion that Microsoft is not anti-competitive. The Redmond press does not help here. This Kool-Aid for example:

Microsoft and Open Source: The Real Deal?

Sure looks like it, based on the company’s partnership with Novell.

The brainwash machine is hard at work.

The Boston Globe article also quotes Microsoft’s pay-to-say Al Gillen [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10]. Of course, just like the Microsoft-owned press (such as NBC), he praises and plays up this patent deal. It’s just like SCO in the ‘mainstream’ press (back in 2003).

“The Boston Globe article also quotes Microsoft’s pay-to-say Al Gillen.”Prepare for journalists and pundits to pretend that Microsoft plays nice with GNU/Linux. They will try to use that against the European Commission and other active regulators. They might actually buy it. But instead, regulators should be furious to see how Microsoft divides developers and forces them to pay (involuntarily, via Novell) after waves of extortion lacking any evidence whatsoever.

It is very serious trouble when the press does not give a voice to known opposition, despite knowing that it exists. Generally speaking about this subject, the press is largely just a marketing funnel for Microsoft (and Novell). Media inquiries for Boycott Novell do exist, but they are rare. There is no balance. Reporting is gravitated towards money and power, not justice or truth, which may explain the little exposure the Free Software Foundation (and GNU) receives compared to Linux (Foundation).

More details to will arrive shortly.

Gates on SUSE

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


  1. vincent said,

    August 20, 2008 at 10:44 am


    I bet that Microsoft will give money to Novell so it buy Red Hat !

    I don’t like Scalix ! I prefer OBM Groupware !

  2. Don said,

    August 20, 2008 at 8:55 pm


    Big media = MPAA and there is why you don’t have Linux coverage without Microsoft being painted in a good light. The MPAA does not want Linux to succeed because they would lose there control over the desktop. With Microsoft they say hey you want to be able to play HD content you have to do this and this and Microsoft complies. As far as Microsoft intentions I think it is purely a matter of a flash bang to blind the EU. They do not want another EU ruling against them it has hurt them financially and image wise. they are grasping for a hold to stay afloat.

  3. DOUGman said,

    August 20, 2008 at 9:57 pm


    That is what it is all about…. what they want is ‘control’.

  4. ThirdLifer said,

    August 20, 2008 at 10:37 pm


    Just read http://blog.secondlife.com/2008/08/20/mono-launch/. I guess no more SecondLife for me. Oh well. Hopefully someone will make a ThirdLife written in C or C++.

  5. Roy Schestowitz said,

    August 21, 2008 at 3:46 am


    I’ve asked Sutor about SL and Mono.

  6. Roy Schestowitz said,

    August 21, 2008 at 4:19 pm


    Update: There are some replies in his blog now.


    Chris Ward is from IBM Research. I don’t know about the rest.

What Else is New

  1. The Enemies of the Patent System Are Patent Maximalists, Not Those Pursuing Saner Patent Policy

    Taking stock of some recent news and remarking (yet again) on the danger the patent system faces if it allows patent lawyers rather than inventors to steer/influence policy (as seen in Europe with the failed UPC bid)

  2. The European Patent Office’s (EPO) Declining Patent Quality 'Tackled' by Making Appeals/Oppositions Harder and More Expensive

    The so-called 'System Battistelli' is proving to be a disaster which makes both examiners and patents obsolete; Making applications cheaper while making appeals/oppositions harder and more expensive is a recipe for disaster, assuring nothing but more litigation and more workloads for courts, where fees rise to extraordinary levels (in effect externalising the costs/toll of EPO to the public, primarily for gains of patent law firms)

  3. Ericsson, Acting Directly Rather Than Via the Patent Trolls It Habitually Uses, in a Patent War Against Linux/Android

    LG is the latest company to be sued by Ericsson, which doesn't just harass the competition (which actually sells something) through patent trolls but also directly, having won a case in the notorious Eastern District of Texas (EDTX/TXED)

  4. The Federation of International Civil Servants' Association: Frenchman “Campinos is Known for Having Close Ties to Mr. Battistelli Who Strongly Supported His Candidacy.”

    Readers find little or no room for optimism as Battistelli's final day at the Office approaches; FICSA is not optimistic either and the general consensus is that Battistelli's so-called 'reforms' will soon yield layoffs

  5. Links 22/3/2018: Mesa 17.3.7, Mesa 18.0.0 RC5, RawTherapee 5.4, Krita 4

    Links for the day

  6. Japan is Becoming Firmer on Patents, Whereas China Goes in the Opposite Direction

    Japan has become less tolerant of patent aggressors and more conscious/concerned about patent quality, which is why the patent microcosm would rather hail China as a role model (even when China's overall share of patents in Europe, for example, is about the same as tiny South Korea and a lot smaller than Japan's)

  7. Aggressive New Activities of Microsoft-Connected Patent Trolls: Finjan, Intellectual Ventures, and Dominion Harbor

    The extensive group of Microsoft-connected patent trolls is still very much active; Microsoft funds them, arms them, and gives them instructions while offering people 'protection' from them (if and only if they choose Azure)

  8. Battistelli's Ongoing Attacks on the Boards Are Helping Unitary Patent (UPC), Which in Turn Helps French Patent Trolls

    Battistelli will likely be remembered not only as the man who attacked justice (and judges) but also rendered staff redundant, issued a lot of highly controversial patents, and by doing so helped the insurgence of patent trolls in Europe

  9. Links 21/3/2018: Cutelyst 2, More on webOS

    Links for the day

  10. SUEPO: “Today May Be Your Last Chance to Demonstrate Against the Seriously Flawed Reforms That Mr Battistelli Has Imposed” on EPO Staff

    Benoît Battistelli will likely remain involved in EPO affairs for a long time to come (even through a fellow Frenchman, Campinos, whom he swaps two chairs with at the Office and CEIPI), but today is the last opportunity for EPO staff to march in protest against the Battistelli regime, which for the first time ever will result in major staff cuts and growing irrelevance for the Office

  11. Links 20/3/2018: GStreamer 1.14.0, Freespire 3.0, Endless OS 3.3.13

    Links for the day

  12. BIO, MDMA and PhRMA Are Pushing the PTAB-Hostile STRONGER Patents Act While IAM and Patently-O Continue to Bash PTAB

    The patent microcosm, which compares the Board to the above (crude analogy from Judge Rader and other patent extremists), is still trying to kill inter partes reviews (IPRs), in effect overlooking its own hypocrisy on the matter (they don’t want patent justice, they just want to metaphorically ‘shoot down’ the judges)

  13. 35 U.S.C. § 101 is Still Effectively Tackling Software Patents in the US, But Patent Law Firms Lie/Distort to 'Sell' These Anyway

    The assertion that software patents are still worth pursuing in 2018 is based on carefully-constructed spin which mis-frames several court decisions and underplays/downplays/ignores pretty much everything that does not suit the narrative

  14. Battistelli's EPO Became Extremely Reliant on China for Distraction and on Endless Supply of Applications (Supply Which Doesn't Exist)

    Discussion about the EPO granting machine (or patent-printing machine) and figures the way EPO management would rather the public won't ever see them; the concept that China means redemption for this patent system is as laughable as always

  15. The US International Trade Commission (USITC) Against Comcast, Courtesy of the Intellectual Ventures-Connected Rovi

    The USITC/ITC, which mostly serves to impose embargoes (sometimes in shocking defiance of PTAB decisions), is being invoked by a firm connected to the world’s largest patent troll, Intellectual Ventures

  16. Tinder/Match Group Uses Software Patents to Sue a Rival, Obviously Choosing to Sue in Texas

    Software patents are being used for leverage, but only those which were likely granted before Alice and only in courts at districts somewhere around Texas

  17. Links 19/3/2018: Linux 4.16 RC6, Atom 1.25, antiX 17.1, GNU Mcron 1.1

    Links for the day

  18. From PTAB Bashing to Federal Circuit (CAFC) Bashing: How the Patent 'Industry' Sells Software Patents

    The latest tactics of the patent microcosm are just about as distasteful as last month's (or last year's), with focus shifting to the courts and few broadly-misinterpreted patent cases (mainly Finjan, Berkheimer, and Aatrix)

  19. Patent Maximalists Keep Coming Up With New Terms and Buzzwords to Bypass the Practical Ban on Software Patents

    The fightback against Section 101 and the US Supreme Court (notably Alice) seems to concentrate on old and new buzzwords, such as "Software as a Medical Device" ("SaMD") or "Fourth Industrial Revolution" ("4IR"), which the EPO recently paid European media to spread and promote

  20. News About Patents is Often Just Advertisements Composed Directly or Indirectly by Companies That Sell Patents and Patent Services

    Infomercials are still dominant among news about patents, in effect drowning out the signal (real journalism) and instead pushing agenda that is detached from reality, pertinent facts, objective assessment, public interest and so on

  21. Blocks and Paywalls Won't Protect the Patent Trolls' Lobby From Scrutiny/Fact-Checking

    Joff Wild and Benoît Battistelli have much in common, including patent maximalism and chronic resistance to facts (or fact-checking)

  22. China Has Become Very Aggressive With Patents

    China now targets other Asian countries/firms -- more so than Western firms -- with patent lawsuits; we expect this to get worse in years to come

  23. UPC/Battistelli Booster IAM Blames Brexit Rather Than EPO Abuses

    While the EPO is collapsing due to mismanagement the boosters of Team Battistelli would rather deflect and speak about Brexit, which is itself partly motivated by such mismanagement

  24. European Commission Again Urged to Tackle Abuses at the European Patent Office (EPO)

    Rina Ronja Kari is the latest MEP attempting to compel the Commission to actually do something about the EPO other than turning a blind eye

  25. Links 18/3/2018: Wine 3.4, Wine-Staging 3.4, KDE Connect 1.8 for Android

    Links for the day

  26. TXED Courts Are Causing Businesses to Leave the District, Notably For Fear That Having Any Operations Based There is a Legal Liability

    A discussion about the infamous abundance of patent cases in the Eastern District of Texas (TXED/EDTX) and what this will mean for businesses that have branches or any form of operations there (making them subjected to lawsuits in that district even after TC Heartland)

  27. PTAB Hatred is So Intense Among the Patent 'Industry' That Even Scammers Are Hailed as Champions If They Target PTAB

    The patent microcosm is so eager to stop the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) that it's supporting sham deals (or "scams") and exploits/distorts the voice of the new USPTO Director to come up with PTAB-hostile catchphrases

  28. The Patent 'Industry' is Increasingly Mocking CAFC and Its Judges Because It Doesn't Like the Decisions

    Judgmental patent maximalists are still respecting high courts only when it suits them; whenever the outcome is not desirable they're willing to attack the legitimacy of the courts and the competence of judges, even resorting to racist ad hominem attacks if necessary

  29. The Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) Carries on Enforcing § 101, Invalidating Software Patents and Upsetting the Patent 'Industry' in the Process

    A quick report on where PTAB stands at the moment, some time ahead of the Oil States decision (soon to come from the US Supreme Court)

  30. Luxembourg Can Become a Hub of Patent Trolls If the EPO Carries on With Its 'Reforms', Even Without the UPC

    With or without the Unified Patent Court (UPC), which is the wet dream of patent trolls and their legal representatives, the EPO's terrible policies have landed a lot of low-quality patents on the hands of patent trolls (many of which operate through city-states that exist for tax evasion -- a fiscal environment ripe for shells)


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


Recent Posts