Microsoft Sues Linux Start Up “Lindows” Over Name

“Microsoft asked a court on Thursday to stop a Linux start-up from using a name the software giant contends infringes on the Windows trademark. The Redmond, Wash.-based software giant filed a motion with the U.S. Court for the Western District of Washington against Lindows, which is developing a version of the Linux operating system that will run popular applications written for Microsoft’s Windows OS. Microsoft contends the company, which plans to formally release its product next year, purposely is trying to confuse Lindows with Windows.” The story is at CNet|News. In related news, the Editor-in-Chief of NewsForge and wrote yesterday that he decided his web sites will not report on Lindows because he believes that the Lindows product is pure… vaporware. OSNews have recently contacted the Lindows CEO for an interview with some important questions on the Lindows product, its development & licencing, but we have not heard back. Update: The Lindows CEO, Michael Robertson, replied to our request for an interview, read on.Mr Robertson replied:

“We’re not really prepared to talk about the technical side of our product. That will come with version 1.0.”

For your interest, these are the questions we sent for the interview:

1. Will Lindows be completely open source as the GPL dictates or you will keep ‘closed’ some of your work?

2. What are the main differences between Lindows and another user friendly Linux distros, like Mandrake or SuSE?
3. WindowsXP was released recently and it seems that it solves a lot of the issues found in the Windows9x codebase. How Lindows will be able to compete with this, reportedly best ever, version of Windows?
4. If a user wants to upgrade to a brand new hardware device, and a kernel compilation is required, how a Lindows (and non-Linux experienced) user is going to handle this? Is Lindows going to handle drop-in upgrades from time to time, the way Microsoft and Apple do for their products, or a more technical approach will be required by the user?
5. Does Lindows uses the RPM or apt-get standards to install new software, or it uses its own format and way to do so?
6. Will there be a version of Lindows that installs as a bootable image file within a Windows partition, or will it require its own partition?
7. You were the founder of, so I can’t help thinking that your product may be somewhat “multimedia-oriented” than server-oriented. If so, the standard kernel that is used on Lindows will be patched against low latency and preemptiveness?
8. How was the feedback so far? Were enough users and press interested in your product?
9. What is exactly your main target market? Home users, businesses, developers or something else?
10. When the users should await a public version (beta or final) of Lindows?


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