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

10.14.08

Novell Incorporated: Convergence of Windows and GNU/Linux Since 2006

Posted in GNU/Linux, Law, Microsoft, Mono, Novell, Patents, Windows at 8:28 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Patents incorporated also

Novell and Microsoft piss on GNU/Linux codebase

SEVERAL DAYS ago, in an essay from Novell’s management in Canada, the relationship between Microsoft and Novell was reaffirmed in the sense that it was shown once again that Novell competes not against Microsoft and Windows; it competes against UNIX, Apple, Sun, Red Hat, Ubuntu (Canonical) and so forth.

To quote Ross Chevalier, “It’s not about replacing Windows with Linux, it’s about making it dead simple for the two to work together.” He also adds: “No other software company our size is as about interoperability as we are.”

Clearly enough, Novell has not heard of open standards as a bridging element. Or maybe Novell is just indifferent, almost uninterested, so it facilitates and reinforces Microsoft lock-in instead. Had Novell behaved properly, it would be capable of saying: “No other software company our size is as about open standards as we are.” But Novell supports ActiveX, Windows Vista, Internet Explorer, .NET, and even XAML.

NindowsNovell seems as obsessed as Microsoft with this sound bite: inter-oper-ability. Big word, empty promise, no substance. What would make better ‘interoperability’ than an almost-complete unification (imitation rather) of APIs, based on Microsoft’s own terms, of course? Software patents (equals cost) as well as control are only two among a variety of broad issues. Whereas reverse engineering like Wine encourages no developers to actively build the Free desktop using Microsoft APIs (including DirectX), Novell’s MonoDevelop is a sign that Novell has sincere yet risky intentions to do so.

Well, as the road to Mono clears up and even Microsoft people join the cause (yes, not only Novell staff is on board anymore), lots of media hype is generated to usher what Novell wishes to label “inevitable”. It’s true, Novell gave up fighting and it wants us too to become defeatists. Novell insists that Windows and .NET are not going away and therefore they must be embraced, even through internal assimilation of GNU/Linux to Windows’ 'superb' security model and intellectual monopolies (.NET).

Sam Varghese has a new article about the unexplained hype surrounding the release of Mono 2.0. We are not the only ones to have noticed an abnormality.

As Novell vice-president Miguel de Icaza, the head of this project, has been blathering on about Mono for years and years, one did not expect that this announcement would have any more traction than the grandiose announcements of previous releases.

Mono, after all, is a project that tailgates APIs from Microsoft, and its development and adoption increasingly makes those who use it open to patent infringement claims by Microsoft.

Surprise, surprise! Many sections of the tech press went bonkers about this announcement. To use a phrase from a former Australian politician, a whole conga line of suckholes lined up to write about it and even interview de Icaza.

[....]

In June 2001, Ximian set up the Mono project. Today the project defines itself as “an open development initiative sponsored by Novell to develop an open source, UNIX version of the Microsoft .NET development platform.” The Novell bits were introduced in 2003 after the purchase of Ximian.

When Microsoft can proudly claim that Free software developers use .NET (Mono) it can then invite them to do it with ‘real thing’ (Visual Studio) for the ‘real’ platform (Windows Vista). Novell and Microsoft help promote a notion, not just among users but also among developers, that GNU/Linux is a second-class choice, a clone, a compromise [1, 2]. They prevent those developers from taking the lead with already-leading and highly-proven technologies like Java.

Mono, ECMA, Microsoft

Another reasons to avoid Mono may be backward compatibility, as pointed out by one of our readers.

I really do not understand why Net is not backwards compatible but I suppose at least I should be happy that the libraries can co-exist instead of the old DLL hell. Microsofts attempt to replace Java could have been implemented in a better way.

Novell’s attitude remains both tactless and dangerous. It puts itself (and moreso others) in unnecessary danger of reliance and dependency, both from a technical and a legal perspective. Moreover, it does almost nothing to compete with Windows.

Novell’s attitude is something like: Why compete with Windows? Just try to work together with Windows (and really hope that Microsoft won’t bite the heads off). Other people knew better, but they learned this lesson the hard way. It was already too late, but they can still teach us something many years later.

“I once preached peaceful coexistence with Windows. You may laugh at my expense — I deserve it.”

Be’s CEO Jean-Louis Gassée

“Pearly Gates and Em-Ballmer
One promises you heaven and the other prepares you for the grave.”

Ray Noorda, Novell

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

9 Comments

  1. satish said,

    October 14, 2008 at 2:59 pm

    Gravatar

    Well i have been hearing a lot of Criticism for Miguel , even i agree that what he is upto is not truly in the spirit of open source . We would expect more passion for the Open Source community form someone who created one among the most famous Open Source projects ….. though i am truly not eligible to comment considering the miniscule contributions i have made to OSS ( and continue to make ) …. but i can’t hold back my dislike !!

  2. Fred Arnold said,

    October 14, 2008 at 7:23 pm

    Gravatar

    Why do you hold it against Novell for not competing with Microsoft? They are partners, after all. As for why is Mono getting so much attention now, I’d say it’s because of the recent 2.0 release, and then all the foamy fact-challenged columnists like Sam V. trying to stir something up. Can we have more facts and fewer vague rants, please? In a nutshell, after wading through the insults and handwaving, its two things: everyone hates Miguel, and there is a very vague patent threat. Mono has been around for seven years now- what is microsoft waiting for?

    I agree that Novell is doing too little to implement actual open standards, and I can even cite their awful kludgy iPrint as one example of a useless proprietary blob of a supposedly cross-platform server. It relies on ActiveX for god’s sake, so there are some truly awful mac and linux clients. which are pointless when CUPS works fine, as do Novell’s older printer servers.

    So there is one specific- where are yours?

  3. TK said,

    October 15, 2008 at 10:38 am

    Gravatar

    “Mono has been around for seven years now- what is microsoft waiting for?”

    MS is waiting for the guards to fall asleep before they begin wreaking havoc from that trojan horse. Has MS retracted the whole “Linux violates over 200 MS patents” meme? Hmm? No, right?

    “Why do you hold it against Novell for not competing with Microsoft? They are partners, after all.”

    This argument tries to bypass the meat of the matter – that a company with a Linux product has a partner agreement with MS IS the outcry. Many folks feel like Novell may be holding the gates open for MS to run right in. Unless you understand that FOSS and proprietary software, especially their intended goals, are oil and water, you won’t understand why so many folks won’t touch it with a 10-foot pole.

    Many folks are leery of these agreements. They see this as a possible attempt to plant code that hopefully no one will notice; later, when the code is in wider use, MS will begin jumping up and down shouting, “Ah hah! We have the smoking gun! See? Linux violates our patents and here’s the proof!” Folks are none the wiser.

    Yes, I know this sounds like a Dale Gribble rant. :)

  4. Roy Schestowitz said,

    October 15, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    Gravatar

    Mono has been around for seven years now- what is microsoft waiting for?

    Ask the people of Troy.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Troy

    Also ask Rambus. It’s called patent ambush.

  5. seller_liar said,

    October 15, 2008 at 2:48 pm

    Gravatar

    API domination is a bad way for free software.

  6. bob said,

    October 15, 2008 at 6:04 pm

    Gravatar

    So what about WINE and ReactOS? Are they not a larger target? Do they not implement a larger number of Windows APIs compared to Novell’s work?

  7. Roy Schestowitz said,

    October 15, 2008 at 6:44 pm

    Gravatar

    bob,

    That is a common question. Since WINE enables you to run Windows executables ‘as-is’ (are), there is no actual construction of the desktop using Wine libraries. This means that if reverse-engineering of DirectX and COM ever became an issue, that would not have impact on native GNU/Linux applications but more of an appendage that’s foreign in the sense that it’s binary and replaceable anyway. The damage is being constrained and isolated.

    Remember that Novell distributes MonoDevelop and actively encourages volunteers to build the Free desktop with Mono. It even sponsors that, e.g. in Banshee. Novell is the only company that’s permitted to do such things.

    Glyn Moody explained this point last week; we are far from a sole voice. He also explained why the “they are evil too” defence does not work for Samba.

  8. Fred A said,

    October 15, 2008 at 8:08 pm

    Gravatar

    “Many folks are leery of these agreements. They see this as a possible attempt to plant code that hopefully no one will notice; later, when the code is in wider use, MS will begin jumping up and down shouting, “Ah hah! We have the smoking gun! See? Linux violates our patents and here’s the proof!” Folks are none the wiser.

    Yes, I know this sounds like a Dale Gribble rant. :)

    Well yes it does :). Seriously, it’s still vague. All software violates some patent somewhere. True, MS’ business plan starts, ends and in-betweens nasty dirty tricks. So let’s say that secret patent-violating code is successfuly on-purpose sneaked into Mono and MS sues. Who will they sue? Novell and Red Hat are the only Linux vendors of any size, and even they aren’t that attractive in terms of recovering money damages. If they both get sued out of business Linux will go on. It’s really hard to see this as anything other than ‘evil by association’, and Miguel doesn’t badmouth MS enough.

  9. Roy Schestowitz said,

    October 15, 2008 at 8:28 pm

    Gravatar

    They don’t need to sue; they can go to users directly (extortions). They already do this very quietly:
    http://boycottnovell.com/2007/05/15/linux-money-for-ms/

    It’s also important to understand why Mono is very different:
    http://boycottnovell.com/2008/09/20/mono-java-dotnet-analysis/

What Else is New


  1. Links 4/5/2016: Wine Staging 1.9.9, ImageMagick Bug Fixes

    Links for the day



  2. Links 3/5/2016: Mozilla Firefox 46.0.1, More Jolla Funding

    Links for the day



  3. New Paper About the UPC Explains Why It is Bad for Small- and Medium-sized European Businesses

    A detailed academic analysis of the Unitary (or Unified) Patent Court reveals/concludes/asserts that it is being marketed or promoted using a misleading premise and promise



  4. [ES] Gobiernos en Europa Todavía Activos en Contra de la Gerencia de la EPO

    Todavía hay trabajo político que está siendo hecho — aunque discretamente — contra Battistelli y sus chácales en la alta gerencia de la Oficina Europea de Patentes



  5. Links 3/5/2016: International Day Against DRM, 25th Anniversary of Linux (Kernel) Near

    Links for the day



  6. Interesting Supreme Court Cases About Patents in the United States

    A quick review of some of the latest developments regarding SCOTUS (the US Supreme Court) as far as patents go



  7. Governments in Europe Still Active Against EPO Management

    There is still political work being done -- albeit rather discreetly -- against Battistelli and his goons at the European Patent Office's top-level management



  8. The European Spam Office (EPO)

    EPO budget at 'work', days after doing copy-paste jobs and also working overtime in the weekend for an extravagant and needless/purposeless event (except for Battistelli's own pride)



  9. Not Just Benoît Battistelli and Willy Minnoye (EPO): Željko Topić Too Thinks He is Above the Law, Avoids the Judges and Courts

    The latest developments regarding some of the criminal complaints and civil lawsuits against Topić, who is now a Vice-President at the European Patent Office (EPO)



  10. Nefarious Forces for Patent Abuse and Software Patents in the United States, Australia, India, Korea, and Europe

    A roundup of news from the weekend and today, with emphasis on the elements inside the system (or the media) which push for regressive policies that benefit them financially at the expense of everybody else



  11. [ES] El Sistema de Patentes de los EE.UU: Donde Uno Desperdicia Años en Corte y Gasta $8,000,000 en Honorarios de Abogados Peleándo una Patente Falsa

    un sumario de noticias acerca de las patentes de software en los EE.UU. Y ha lo que han llevado, debido en gran manera al decline en calidad de las patentes por parte de la USPTO (dejando que otros se las arreglen limpiando el desórden)



  12. [ES] La Oficina Europea de Patentes Todavía Sigilósamente Abusiva, Pagará $15,000 en Compensasió a Trabajadora Tras un Tardío Fallo de la ILO

    La Organización Internacional del Trabajo (ILO) emite un fallo en un caso de abuso de la EPO y nota “la excesiva duración de los procedimienteos internos de apelación.”



  13. Links 2/5/2016: Linux 4.6 RC6, DragonBox Pyra

    Links for the day



  14. Links 1/5/2016: Wine 1.9.9, Devuan Jessie 1.0 Beta

    Links for the day



  15. The US Patent System: Where One Wastes Years in Court and Spends $8,000,000 in Lawyers' Fees Fighting a Bogus Patent

    A roundup of news about software patents in the US and what they have led to, owing in part to the USPTO's declining patent quality (leaving others to clean up its mess)



  16. The European Patent Office Still Silently Abusive, Will Pay $15,000 in Compensation to Female Worker After Belated ILO Judgment

    The International Labour Organisation (ILO) issues a judgment on a case of abuse by the EPO and notes "excessive length of the internal appeal proceedings."



  17. [ES] Alice Continúa Quebrando Patentes de Software Asi Que los Abogados de Patentes, Cabilderos de los Monopolistas, Etc. Ahora Atacan a la Corte Suprema por Hacer Esto

    los cabilderos Corpórativos y abogados de patentes están tratándo de poner a Alicia en la tumba, por su impacto en las patentes de software que es muy profundo y así hasta ahora casi indetenible



  18. [ES] ¿Cómo Salvar la Reputación de la EPO?: Crear Más Jurados de Apelaciónes en Europa y Abolir la Malgíada/Malintencionada Fantasía de la UPC

    Una crítica evaluación de lo que ocurre en la Oficina Europea de Patentes (EPO), la que rápidamente se está yendo para abajo (y degradando sobre todo) a el nivel de los sistemas Chinos, en conjuntamente con corrupción, los abusos, y la bajísima calidad de las patentes



  19. [ES] La Corte de Apelaciónes del Circuito Federal (CAFC) Acaba de Ponerse a Favor de los Trolles de Patentes

    la tristémente célebre CAFC, que manifestó las patentes de software en los EE.UU, acaba de dar un regalo a los trolles de patentes quienes típicamente usan las patentes de software para extorsión enc complicidad con los jueces del Este de Texas



  20. [ES] Análisis de los Últimos Datos de Lex Machina Acerca de la Litigación de Patentes Muestra Como está Declinándo

    el Professor Mark Lemley de Lex Machina resalta las tendencias en litigation al colectar y analizar datos relacionados con patente y concerniéntes a monopolios intelectuales en general; actualmente muestra una sequía de litigaciones (muestran que ha disminuído)



  21. [ES] La India Está Teniendo Otra Prueba de los Peligros de las Patentes Occidentales, Debe Aprender a Rechazar Completamente las Patentes de Software en Medio de Gran Presión

    El gigante de software que es la India continua enfrentándos ea la cruel y agresivo cabildeo de Occidente, haciéndo que este controle a la India por patentes que no deberían de existir en primer lugar



  22. [ES] Microsoft Dice que Continuará Extorsiónando a Compañías Que Distribuyan Linux, Usando Patentes de Software Usuallmente

    La guerra de Microsoft contra Linux, una guerra que es peleada usando patentes de software patents (por ganancias y/o por chantáje con arreglos empaquetados), todavía continúa a pesar de todas las tácticas de relaciónes públicas de Microsoft y sus sócios



  23. Alice Continues to Smash Software Patents So Patent Lawyers, Monopolists' Lobbyists Etc. Now Attack the Supreme Court for Doing This

    Corporate lobbyists and patent lawyers are trying to put Alice in the grave, for its impact on software patents is very profound and thus far almost unstoppable



  24. How to Salvage the EPO's Reputation: Create More Boards of Appeal in Europe and Abolish the Misguided UPC Fantasy

    A critical evaluation of what goes on at the European Patent Office (EPO), which is quickly descending down (and overall degrading) to the level of Chinese systems, along with the corruption, the abuses, and the low quality of patents



  25. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC) Has Just Sided With Patent Trolls

    The notorious CAFC, which manifested software patents in the United States, has just given a gift to patent trolls that typically use software patents for extortion down in Texas



  26. Analyses of the Latest Data From Lex Machina About Patent Litigation Show Some Litigation Declines

    Professor Mark Lemley's Lex Machina highlights litigation trends by collecting and analysing data related to patents and pertaining to intellectual monopolies in general; now it shows litigation droughts



  27. India is Having Another Taste of the Dangers of Western Patents, Must Learn to Reject Software Patents in the Face of Great Pressure

    The growing software giant which is India continues to face cruel and aggressive lobbying from the West, enabling the West to control India by patents that should not exist in the first place



  28. Links 29/4/2016: GNOME 3.21.1, Fairphone

    Links for the day



  29. Microsoft Says It Will Continue to Extort Companies That Distribute Linux, Using Software Patents As Usual

    Microsoft's war on Linux, a war which is waged using software patents (for revenue and/or for coercion in bundling deals), is still going on in spite of all the PR tactics from Microsoft and its paid partners



  30. Australia Might be Next to Block Software Patents If Commission's Advice is Followed

    Australian advice against software patents, which can hopefully influence Australian politicians and put an end, once and for all, to all software patents in Australia


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