Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 2nd Nov 2006 22:05 UTC, submitted by anonymous
Novell and Ximian At a press conference in San Francisco, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is expected to announce a new partnership between Microsoft and Novell. The unprecedented deal will have Microsoft offering a degree of sales support for Novell's SUSE Linux while both companies work towards better interoperability between their respective operating systems. As part of the agreement, Microsoft also promises not to wield its patent portfolio against SUSE Linux. More here. You can follow the live webcast announcement, by Steve Ballmer, here. Update: Novell has put up a detailed FAQ about this deal.
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Patent quotes from the press conference
by nzjrs on Thu 2nd Nov 2006 23:18 UTC
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I cant remember the exact wording, but I heard this from the webcast live

"The patent agreement/protection agreement will only apply between SUSE linux and microsoft" - Balmer

Another speaker also said [about the patent agreement protection]

"Applied to all code currently in SUSE (emphasis added by the speaker) linux, and code developed in future" - Another guy

Im no lawyer so I cannot speculate how GPL projects upstream/downstream from Novell wil be affected by these clarifications on the patent agreement.

On the whole I am happy, this is a step forward at least. If nothing else Microsoft has admitted that despite the lobbying, the FUD, and the dirty tactics they cannot ignore linux. Time will tell if this agreement has been formed with good intentions on microsofts behalf or not....

Edited 2006-11-02 23:22

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