Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 30th May 2007 09:43 UTC, submitted by mkools
Legal "Details of a controversial patent agreement between Microsoft and Novell have been revealed in Novell's SEC filings. The text of the agreement is now publicly available, but some parts - including one whole page - have been redacted. Although most of the details surrounding the agreement have already been disclosed, there are a few aspects of the deal that weren't previously known. Of particular interest is the language that describes exceptions to the patent indemnification agreement."
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AdministratorX
Member since:
2006-04-21

It's looks like Microsoft wants to keep all options open. I see this as a defensive plan by Microsoft to try to stifle the growth of Linux. Clearly they see Linux as a "Major" threat to their economic dominance on the OS playing field. Not to mention the fact that they have no major apps that run on Linux without Wine or Crossover Office.

Edited 2007-05-30 10:40

Reply Score: 1

Let me get this strait...
by Adurbe on Wed 30th May 2007 10:41 UTC
Adurbe
Member since:
2005-07-06

The apps mentioned are included in SUSE! this 'agreement' was worth the paper it was written on an now I feel safe.. I'm protected unless MS decide to sue....

Reply Score: 5

RE: Let me get this strait...
by butters on Thu 31st May 2007 01:03 UTC in reply to "Let me get this strait..."
butters Member since:
2005-07-08

Remember, this deal wasn't about patents, it was about interoperability... ;-)

Nobody is sure whether it's even possible to win a patent suit against an end-user of an infringing software product. Not even under U.S. law. You're more likely to be exposed to breach of contract on Novell's part. You're much more likely to be exposed to GPL violations on Novell's part. The risk of dealing with Novell is way higher than the risk of Microsoft or the boogyman coming after you.

Hovsepian is even worse at dealing with Microsoft than Messman was before him. That's Novell's problem. Always has been, always will be. If your goal is to minimize the risk of legal vulnerability, then I would recommend staying away from Novell.

Reply Score: 3

Clone products
by Adurbe on Wed 30th May 2007 10:43 UTC
Adurbe
Member since:
2005-07-06

Isn't Novell's own mail program and mono included in this?

Reply Score: 4

RE: Clone products
by IanSVT on Wed 30th May 2007 12:03 UTC in reply to "Clone products"
IanSVT Member since:
2005-07-06

I'm not sure about mono. Open Exchange is mentioned there I believe, but Novell has nothing to do with that project/company. And if anything, Exchange is a clone of Novell's own GroupWise from back in the 90s.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Clone products
by BluenoseJake on Wed 30th May 2007 12:44 UTC in reply to "RE: Clone products"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

"And if anything, Exchange is a clone of Novell's own GroupWise from back in the 90s."

Yeah, that's right, mail and directory services didn't exist before Groupwise. Come on, not every product MS puts out is ripped off from somebody else, sometimes there is only a couple of ways to skin a cat.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Clone products
by twenex on Wed 30th May 2007 14:16 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Clone products"
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

Yeah, that's right, mail and directory services didn't exist before Groupwise. Come on, not every product MS puts out is ripped off from somebody else,

If your argument is that Groupwise existed before Exchange, and Groupwise wasn't the first mail-and-directory-services program, then the implication of the above is that MS ripped off Exchange not from Groupwise but from somebody/ies else.

Not saying they did, just saying, that's the implication of what I've quoted.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Clone products
by BluenoseJake on Wed 30th May 2007 15:29 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Clone products"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

No, the implication is that to build a mail server, it can only be done in so many ways, therefore most mail servers are going to be designed in similar ways.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Clone products
by IanSVT on Wed 30th May 2007 14:24 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Clone products"
IanSVT Member since:
2005-07-06

Yeah, that's right, mail and directory services didn't exist before Groupwise. Come on, not every product MS puts out is ripped off from somebody else, sometimes there is only a couple of ways to skin a cat.


Hey, thanks for completely missing the point. The parent poster said something about a Novell mail system being excluded. I said it wasn't anything Novell is directly involved and that the only mail system they now develop(gw) was around before Exchange. Nowhere did I say it was ripped off. Most software is built on the direct code or general theme of its predecessors regardless of project/company. To say it was ripped off(which I didn't do) is ignoring that fact.

Next time try asking me to explain my point more thoroughly instead of acting like I just lit your MSCE study guide books on fire.

Edited 2007-05-30 14:26

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: Clone products
by BluenoseJake on Wed 30th May 2007 15:36 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Clone products"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

Original post:

"I'm not sure about mono. Open Exchange is mentioned there I believe, but Novell has nothing to do with that project/company. And if anything, Exchange is a clone of Novell's own GroupWise from back in the 90s."

I don't SEE your point in there, so maybe that's how I missed it? Perhaps if you explained your point properly in the first place, I couldn't have mistaken it for something else?

Also, seeing as you said it was a clone of Groupwise, perhaps that could be why I thought you were saying it was a ripoff. Maybe I could have been a little softer in my tone, but that is irrelevant to the fact that Exchange is NOT a clone of Groupwise.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Clone products
by IanSVT on Wed 30th May 2007 16:54 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Clone products"
IanSVT Member since:
2005-07-06

BluenoseJake, read the article again.

" In the agreement, a clone product is broadly defined as "a product (or major component thereof) of a Party that has the same or substantially the same features and functionality as a then-existing product (or major component thereof) of the other Party ... and that has the same or substantially the same user interface, or implements all or substantially all of the Application Programming Interfaces of the Prior Product."


Your gripe seems to be my use of the word clone. Within in the context of the article, which this topic is generated from, is the definition of clone or clone product that I'm using. The parent poster mentioned mail software which in the context of the article creates possible litigation issues. I merely pointed out that it had nothing to so with Novell's own software and that it came out first. Exchange could be a clone product from GroupWise due to the feature set and age of both products. It's a stretch, arguably, but I was pointing that out to discount Novell's mail app from having anything to do with the topic at hand.

My error then was omitting the word "product" which apparently caused you to mistake me for saying something along the lines that Microsoft roped into Novell head quarters one late night and cloned the code to GroupWise which lead to Exchange. I'm not saying that at all.

Fair enough?

Edited 2007-05-30 16:58

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Clone products
by BluenoseJake on Wed 30th May 2007 22:15 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Clone products"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

Read my post again, as I stated, Exchange cannot be a clone of GroupWise, as there are only so many ways to implement a mail server, so they are all going to be similar. Interface they are different, feature wise, they are similar, due to there similar tasks. That does not make them clones, Just like The Gimp and Photoshop are similar, because they both edit images, and need similar tools.

Evolution is a clone of Outlook because it tries to match both features and interface, the whole user experience.

Please don't tell me to read the article again, my original post was to point out that Exchange is not a clone of GroupWise. I still think that is correct, and I won't be changing my mind, I know how exchange works, and I know how groupwise works. I also no what a clone is, and some programs are clones of others, and some are not.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Clone products
by IanSVT on Wed 30th May 2007 23:54 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Clone products"
IanSVT Member since:
2005-07-06

Please don't tell me to read the article again, my original post was to point out that Exchange is not a clone of GroupWise. I still think that is correct, and I won't be changing my mind, I know how exchange works, and I know how groupwise works. I also no what a clone is, and some programs are clones of others, and some are not.


Holy sh....Why are you arguing with me when I agree with much of what you said?

The reason I asked you to read the article again was the mention of the phrase "clone product". Exchange is NOT a direct clone of GroupWise. It's arguably a "clone product" based on the criteria put forth by the article which is why I quoted it. That's a different discussion all together, and before you jump down my throat again, I don't even know I would argue that it is a "clone product". I'm not trying to change your mind no matter how desperately you think I'm trying.

I ommited the word "product". That's where the confusion came from. I already said that, and you continue to argue point I don't even disagree with!

By the way, I put an email account in my profile. Feel free to email me if you want to continue this discussion when this thread get buried and we move on to more internet yelling in different threads. ;)

Edited 2007-05-31 00:07

Reply Score: 2

by Ben Jao Ming on Wed 30th May 2007 12:42 UTC
Ben Jao Ming
Member since:
2005-07-26

Microsoft-Novell Agreement May Exclude Wine, OpenOffice

And *I* might exclude Novell, Microsoft...

Reply Score: 5

Oh, come on
by twenex on Wed 30th May 2007 14:20 UTC
twenex
Member since:
2006-04-21

It's not as if this is a surprise. I mean, people have been saying that Windows and Office are Microsoft's only profitable products. If Wine worked properly for 100% of applications and OpenOffice implemented 100% of MS Office features, MS' profit margins would disappear over night.

What's a more interesting question is whether the agreement covers Mono. I myself doubt that it does, but you never know, they might be hedging their bets to pull the rug out from under anyone using Mono once .Net becomes more established.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Oh, come on
by shykid on Wed 30th May 2007 14:38 UTC in reply to "Oh, come on"
shykid Member since:
2007-02-22

. If Wine worked properly for 100% of applications and OpenOffice implemented 100% of MS Office features, MS' profit margins would disappear over night.

You forgot to add something: Linux hardware compatibility.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Oh, come on
by twenex on Wed 30th May 2007 14:43 UTC in reply to "RE: Oh, come on"
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

How could Microsoft help Linux hardware compatibility?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Oh, come on
by dylansmrjones on Wed 30th May 2007 15:25 UTC in reply to "RE: Oh, come on"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

You forgot to add something: Linux hardware compatibility.


Yes. Linux has superior hardware support. Microsoft could definitely learn some from that ;)

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: Oh, come on
by tomcat on Wed 30th May 2007 17:54 UTC in reply to "RE: Oh, come on"
tomcat Member since:
2006-01-06

Yes. Linux has superior hardware support. Microsoft could definitely learn some from that ;)

Except wireless cards.

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Oh, come on
by dylansmrjones on Thu 31st May 2007 13:07 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Oh, come on"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Linux has superior support for wireless cards compared with Microsoft. However Windows has better third party support, but that has nothing to do with Microsoft. Windows out of the box supports virtually nothing. Windows is virtually without hardware support from Microsoft, whereas it has great third party support.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Oh, come on
by systyrant on Wed 30th May 2007 14:39 UTC in reply to "Oh, come on"
systyrant Member since:
2007-01-18

Then again Microsoft may have no problem with Mono. They allow someone else to do all the work creating a cross platform VM for .net and they take all the glory.

Now if the Mono project ever created a substantially good "clone" of Visual Studio then I would expect to see Microsoft throwing lawsuits (and FUD) at them.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Oh, come on
by dylansmrjones on Thu 31st May 2007 13:10 UTC in reply to "RE: Oh, come on"
dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

Well, VS is not a particularly good tool. It's the perfect example of development gone bad. And the best parts of VS has been "pilfered" from other projects, especially Borland products and BlueJ.

Reply Score: 2

Linux should sue Microsoft
by ido50 on Wed 30th May 2007 15:16 UTC
ido50
Member since:
2006-02-06

It seems pretty obvious what needs to be done. Linus and other Linux developers should sue Microsoft for libel. Microsoft will have to step up and either prove their claims or prove themselves wrong and destroy its reputation even further.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Linux should sue Microsoft
by jboss1995 on Wed 30th May 2007 16:11 UTC in reply to "Linux should sue Microsoft"
jboss1995 Member since:
2007-05-02

You are 100% right. This is propagation slander. Put up or shut-up MS. Quit trying to tarnish everyone else so you look better. Does anyone else find this ironic that the company most noted for stealling ideas is now crying about it happening to them. They know how to work the system. Please no replies form MS drones who shun morals for a paycheck.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Linux should sue Microsoft
by butters on Thu 31st May 2007 00:42 UTC in reply to "Linux should sue Microsoft"
butters Member since:
2005-07-08

Suing Microsoft would be very expensive. Letting Microsoft slowly twist in the wind while their marketshare erodes over the next 20 years will be much cheaper. When you have nothing to sell but fear, you're on your way out the door. The right move is to do nothing. After a while of Microsoft making threats and never following through, they'll be forced to put up or shut up. We don't need to force their hand. They've already painted themselves into a corner.

Reply Score: 2

Note sure
by snowflake on Wed 30th May 2007 15:38 UTC
snowflake
Member since:
2005-07-20

>Now if the Mono project ever created a substantially >good "clone" of Visual Studio then I would expect to see >Microsoft throwing lawsuits (and FUD) at them.

Quite apart from the difficulty in writing something as comprehensive as VS without substantial corporate backing (you're not going to get this sort of thing written in someones back bedroom, unlike eg open office or Eclipse), there is a free version called Visual Express so I'm not sure if MS make much money out of it anyway. VS is an enabling technology,cloning something like office on the other hand would understandably rise cause problems.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Note sure
by jayson.knight on Wed 30th May 2007 17:43 UTC in reply to "Note sure"
jayson.knight Member since:
2005-07-06

"So I'm not sure if MS make much money out of it [Visual Studio] anyway."

It's pretty well known that MS shoots for breaking even in its visual tools group. The amount of money they make on the backend from license sales due to apps written for the Windows platform more than makes up for it.

Reply Score: 2