Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 8th Nov 2006 11:24 UTC
Novell and Ximian Microsoft will pay Novell USD 348 million up front, but Novell will return USD 200 million of that amount over five years. The specific numbers came in an a filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission made by Novell late Tuesday. "The financial commitments Microsoft is making as part of this agreement are significant," company CEO Ron Hovsepian said in a statement. In related news, Microsoft has denied that its patent deal with Novell is in breach of the GPL or will automatically spread Microsoft's patent protection to other Linux distributions.
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RE: Why so hard on Novell?
by manmist on Wed 8th Nov 2006 12:58 UTC in reply to "Why so hard on Novell?"
manmist
Member since:
2005-12-18

I think it was probably MS that went to Novell and not the other way around.

Except that Novell clearly admitted that it went to MS first.


This would only violate GPL if Novell included proprietary software, I don't think there is any clause against "lets agree not to take each other to court over IP patents".


Except for GPL clause 7 that prevents patent cross licensing which is what a promise not to sue actually is.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Why so hard on Novell?
by Marcellus on Wed 8th Nov 2006 13:38 in reply to "RE: Why so hard on Novell?"
Marcellus Member since:
2005-08-26

Except for GPL clause 7 that prevents patent cross licensing which is what a promise not to sue actually is.

The promise not to sue does not cover Novell itself from being sued by MS, or MS from being sued by Novell.
Only Novell customers from being sued by MS, and MS customers from being sued by Novell.
No cross-licensing of patents there.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Why so hard on Novell?
by Jody on Wed 8th Nov 2006 13:50 in reply to "RE: Why so hard on Novell?"
Jody Member since:
2005-06-30

"Except that Novell clearly admitted that it went to MS first."

Please provide a source.

"Except for GPL clause 7 that prevents patent cross licensing which is what a promise not to sue actually is."

I found this here:
http://www.novell.com/linux/microsoft/faq_opensource.html


Q1. How is this agreement compatible with Novell's obligations under Section 7 of the GPL?

Our agreement with Microsoft is focused on our customers, and does not include a patent license or covenant not to sue from Microsoft to Novell (or, for that matter, from Novell to Microsoft). Novell's customers receive a covenant not to sue directly from Microsoft. We have not agreed with Microsoft to any condition that would contradict the conditions of the GPL and we are in full compliance.


PS GPLv2 can be located here if you are interested in reading that section: http://www.fsf.org/licensing/licenses/info/GPLv2.html

Edited 2006-11-08 14:03

Reply Parent Score: 3

stestagg Member since:
2006-06-03

Doesn't this mean that Novell customers will break the GPL? If Novell are being sub-contracted by Microsoft to sell patent licenses, then Novell customers will break section 7?

Reply Parent Score: 0

RE[3]: Why so hard on Novell?
by manmist on Wed 8th Nov 2006 15:25 in reply to "RE[2]: Why so hard on Novell?"
manmist Member since:
2005-12-18

"Except that Novell clearly admitted that it went to MS first."

Please provide a source.

http://www.novell.com/linux/microsoft/press-conference_transcript.h...

" QUESTION: How long have these talks been going on about this agreement, and who initiated it, essentially? Did Novell go to Microsoft, or Microsoft go to Novell, or did you just sort of get together spontaneously? How did that work?

RON HOVSEPIAN: How it happened was I reached out to Kevin Turner in the April timeframe, the COO of Microsoft"

The argument that since the customers are getting the patent benefits, the GPL is not being violated is weasel wording. GPL mandates that everybody gets the same benefits.

http://lwn.net/Articles/208186/

Edited 2006-11-08 15:29

Reply Parent Score: 2