Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 29th Mar 2007 22:07 UTC, submitted by anonymous
Microsoft Software behemoth Microsoft could be one of the biggest losers from proposed license changes to the Linux operating system unveiled Wednesday. That's a possible outcome of updates to the license pushed by the FSF. The FSF wants to make mutually exclusive pacts such as the Novell-Microsoft open-source agreement a violation of the next iteration of the GNU GPL, the license that governs Linux use. "It is unfortunate that the FSF is attempting to use the GPLv3 to prevent future collaboration among industry leaders to benefit customers," said Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft's vice president of intellectual property and licensing.
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PlatformAgnostic
Member since:
2006-01-02

Office is deliberately tied into the Windows kernel at a very low level. This is deliberate, to make it very hard to port to other operating systems.


Have you ever heard the expression, "never assume malice before considering incompetence?"

People often treat Microsoft's actions as conspiratorial or evil. Sometimes I can see that this is the case, at least with things like the OEM deals and the whole OS/2 NT debacle.

But you really stretch my mind when you declare that Microsoft is conspiring to NOT do something. It'd be like my wanting a sandwich and claiming that my roommate is "deliberately" not making me one because he's sitting there doing his homework. Now tell me, should I expect him to make me a sandwich and is he morally obliged to do so? How about if I'm also simultaneously trying to steal his girlfriend?

By the way, Office is not in the kernel and that's a really ludicrous claim. Next thing you're going to tell me is that IE is part of the kernel too. Hint: to be in the Windows kernel, you have to be part of ntoskrnl.exe or hal.dll or have a filename that ends in .sys. Look in Office for any of these files.

One thing you could say is that Office has an advantage on Windows because they have access to the Windows team (the people, not the source code). They can request features in Windows and they can report bugs in Windows faster than external customers. But the Office team does do a lot of work to make their stuff faster and better than other Windows applications. For instance, they have their own widget toolkit and create windows as blank canvases onto which they paint everything themselves. They then recreate all the accessibility infrastructure and standard behaviors for their widgets. This is what you have to do to get a really high-performance app like office in Windows. Sure, it's a little easier if you're at Microsoft, but there's still a lot of work and Office is a gigantic team.

In fact, office relies on a couple of core windows technologies like OLE and GDI, but most of its drawing is handled internally and is thus sorta platform independent. Porting to Linux would take time, but it is not infeasable considering that Office already runs fine on the Mac. They just don't have any good reason to do it right now. It's not in their interest, and there is no real moral or economic principle that indicates they should be forced to help their competitors.

Reply Parent Score: 4

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

{ But you really stretch my mind when you declare that Microsoft is conspiring to NOT do something. It'd be like my wanting a sandwich and claiming that my roommate is "deliberately" not making me one because he's sitting there doing his homework. }

I don't want my roommate to make my sandwich, I just want him to stop bitching whenever I make my own sandwich. I'd also like him to tell me if he has any particular dietary requirements so that I can make sandwiches that we both can eat.

Apparently, he would like to ban me from our shared kitchen, just because he knows I am fully capable of making sandwiches.

Reply Parent Score: 5

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

{ But you really stretch my mind when you declare that Microsoft is conspiring to NOT do something. It'd be like my wanting a sandwich and claiming that my roommate is "deliberately" not making me one because he's sitting there doing his homework. }

I don't want my roommate to make my sandwich, I just want him to stop bitching whenever I make my own sandwich. I'd also like him to tell me if he has any particular dietary requirements so that I can make sandwiches that we both can eat.

Apparently, he would like to ban me from our shared kitchen, just because he knows I am fully capable of making sandwiches.


Oh, BTW, the grumpy so-and-so has NEVER made me a sandwich, even though I have made a good many for him, and even if I offer to pay. In fact, like a petulant two-year-old, he absolutely refuses to do so.

Edited 2007-03-30 06:19

Reply Parent Score: 2

melkor Member since:
2006-12-16

Office is deliberately tied into the kernel. Office DLL files will not communicate with the operating system unless the DLL files see/communicate what needs to be said.

Let's look at it another way - OpenOffice runs on BSD, Linux, OS X and Windows. It's code that's been written to be open and cross platform independant. Can you say the same about Microsoft Office? Nope. Can you imagine if Microsoft were made to port Office to Linux/BSD, we'd be getting "but we can't, there's parts of Windows that it needs to function properly [or function at all]. Microsoft made this very same argument when the DOJ questioned them about bundling IE in with Windows. They argued that Internet Explorer could not be removed from the system, not without breaking it. This point was proved totally bogus by 3rd party software engineers I might add.

Microsoft has no intentions of severing the interoperational ties between office/msn messenger/wmp etc. It wants them tied to the operating system, to retain its operating system monopoly. It knows that as soon as those applications/suites run on other platforms, it'll lose sales big time.

As to your last sentence, what a load of bullshit. More people use Linux on the desktop than macs world wide. If they can afford to port to OS X, then hell, they can afford to port to Linux. Typical pro Microsoft bullshit.

Dave

Reply Parent Score: 1

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

"Office is deliberately tied into the kernel. Office DLL files will not communicate with the operating system unless the DLL files see/communicate what needs to be said."

Awesome nonsense. Yes, it is so tied to the Windows kernel that it runs on OSX.

"Let's look at it another way - OpenOffice runs on BSD, Linux, OS X and Windows"

OO.o compiled for OSX does not run on Linux. Does that mean OO.o is tied to the OSX kernel? (No, it doesn't)

"It's code that's been written to be open and cross platform independant. Can you say the same about Microsoft Office? Nope."

So what? They have no obligation to make Office run on other platforms although it does run on OSX. It's their product and it's not for you (or anyone else) to say what platforms it should run on.

"Microsoft made this very same argument when the DOJ questioned them about bundling IE in with Windows."

This is a COMLETELY different issue. It's not like Windows comes with Office and you can't remove it.

"Microsoft has no intentions of severing the interoperational ties between office/msn messenger/wmp etc."

Interoperational ties? How does WMP tie to Office? or MSN Messenger?

"Typical pro Microsoft bullshit."
Oh the irony.

Reply Parent Score: 3

Gryzor Member since:
2005-07-03

More people use Linux on the desktop than macs world wide. If they can afford to port to OS X, then hell, they can afford to port to Linux. Typical pro Microsoft bullshit.


That's typical anti-Microsoft bullshit.
Office For Mac is not the same codebase. Office for Windows uses GDI plus some Windows extensions and it's a Windows Project.

Office For Mac was written in CodeWarrior for Mac, now being ported to XCode for the new version (Universal Binary), but apart from the parser and filters (which could be shared somehow), the applications has got nothing to do with each other. There could be some "common" components, but they didn't "port it". They just made office for mac, based upon an idea.

This comment is completely off topic
Seriously, read more.
And stop bashing MS for not being a Red Communist.

Reply Parent Score: -1