Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 3rd Apr 2007 17:13 UTC, submitted by davidiwharper
Novell and Ximian "The Free Software Foundation has published a third draft of the GPL3 license. The FSF had indicated leading up to this draft that it would be addressing some concerns it had with the Novell-Microsoft agreements in the draft. Here's Novell's position on the new draft."
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Member since:

The fact of it all is, if the GPL3 does destabilize Novell's ability to distribute Linux or Linux based products, it's going to hurt Linux in the enterprise. Now if you don't care about the enterprise, it's probably a win-win. However, if you do see the value of enterprise support of Linux, customers and third party vendors will be vary wary of Linux support. That only means one thing, continued or expanded Microsoft support and dropped or no possibility of Linux support.

You are forgetting that Redhat is a more major player than Novell in that market. If Novell is crippled, RedHat is there to fill the void and take on customers that would have been theirs anyway if Novell had never gotten into the business.

I would as soon see RedHat have some competition. But Novell's exit from the market would make room for another Linux pure play.

Novell is a middle aged balding company desperately trying to think young and talk hip. But their minds and attitudes are still those of middle aged businessmen who think in terms of patent agreements, exclusive contracts, and licensing proprietary software.

They tried. I'll give them that. But they failed. Best to sweep that failure off the table and make room for another company which really "gets it".

Edit: Yeah, I'm playing devil's advocate today! ;-)

Edited 2007-04-04 19:01

Reply Parent Score: 2

IanSVT Member since:

I'm pissed, I normally agree with you! Now what am I going to do? ;)

Seriously though, I agree RedHat will fill the gap, but certainly not all of it and the amount they can fill is very debatable. Novell has products which neither RedHat nor any other Linux distros have. GroupWise being the biggest example of a "killer app". IBM does have Notes, but there isn't much movement to Notes. The only other major player in that know who.

Moreover, a meltdown of a "Linux company" spurred by the license would cast a shadow of a doubt over the viability of Linux in the work place, regardless of its technical merits. If technical merits were what really counted in terms of sales, NetWare would have squashed NT a decade ago. That shadow of a doubt would likely push many organizations on the fence over to the MS side. I can tell you now, if Novell folded tomorrow, there's nothing I could do to keep MS from taking over my server in full. I suspect there are many similar situations.

Reply Parent Score: 3

sbergman27 Member since:

You're right, of course. I'll be very honest and say that for the last couple of days I've intentionally argued positions that I normally would not because:

1. I'm in an odd mood.

2. It's a good way to understand better how the people on the other side of the debate think.

I am a bit uncomfortable with the second most important Linux company in existence being involved with Linux largely as a matter of convenience.

I don't think that they have the same kind of deep commitment to the OSS philosophy that RedHat has. And by that, I do not mean idealism. I mean that RedHat believes, in its corporate soul, that if it stands true to its OSS philosophy, that it will flourish as a company.

Now they may be right, and they may be wrong. But the important thing is that they believe this with all their yuppie, executive, hearts. ;-)

Desperation drove Novell to OSS. I don't think that they have the same convictions. And I don't think that they are in this for the long term.

But yeah. I guess we need 'em.

Reply Parent Score: 4