Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 9th Oct 2007 16:14 UTC, submitted by Rahul
Microsoft Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer has warned users of Red Hat Linux that they will have to pay Microsoft for its intellectual property. "People who use Red Hat, at least with respect to our intellectual property, in a sense have an obligation to compensate us," Ballmer said last week at a company event in London discussing online services in the UK.
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The *BSDs had their "legal stoush" (fight) in the early '90s iirc. Everything was sorted out for them then. No loose ends for MS to pull on.

That was basically copyright and ownership issues, much as the SCO fight with linux was. Has no bearing on patent infringement, in fact, if MS truly believes that the linux kernel violates their patent portfolio, it would be hard to believe that the BSDs don't violate some of these mythical patents as well.

If enterprises started loading their datacenters with BSD backed by an enterprise-oriented company similar to Red Hat (and please, nobody suggest Apple), you can bet that the FUD stick would be turned on the BSDs fairly quickly. MS doesn't care about linux or BSD in particular, they're only concerned about the enterprises that dare choose them over Windows.

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