Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

Summary: Microsoft has been doing well against Linux through bluff. What the Elliott move does is threaten to make Microsoft show its hand.

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In all the talk about New York financier Paul Singer's plan to go all Gordon Gecko on Novell, one word has not been mentioned nearly enough.

Microsoft.

Microsoft needs a viable Novell, and Novell's Linux business was on the verge of becoming viable when Singer's Elliott Associates swooped in with an offer to break up the company, seize its cash, split off the old NetWare business, and auction off Suse Linux.

I doubt Microsoft wants to actually buy that business. Owning a Linux would be a real complication. Suddenly all those patent cross-licenses that claim Microsoft has patent rights to the software take on a different odor, and Microsoft is forced to go down the SCO road to prove its claims.

Microsoft has been doing well against Linux through bluff. What the Elliott move does is threaten to make Microsoft show its hand.

Even the due diligence process could threaten Microsoft. Singer is going to get a look inside that 2006 agreement.

It's a prime company asset and, even though it's protected by a non-disclosure agreement, things get out. Stuff leaks. Knowing exactly what Microsoft claims to own in legal documents would tell open source advocates what must be changed to eliminate the threat.

In the Wall Street ocean Novell has become a minnow and Microsoft remains a whale. (Singer's a shark, and isn't it gratifying this big GOP contributor now thinks there are greater opportunities here than the Congo.)

Feel free to advise Microsoft in the comments. For now I'll leave you with Gecko's greatest hit, from the IMDB database:

The point is, ladies and gentleman, that greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right, greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit. Greed, in all of its forms; greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge has marked the upward surge of mankind. And greed, you mark my words, will not only save Teldar Paper, but that other malfunctioning corporation called the USA.

Just change Teldar Paper, the fictional firm at the heart of the 1987 movie Wall Street, to Novell. (And here's a trailer for the sequel.)

Topics: Linux, Microsoft, Open Source, Operating Systems, Software

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  • Eliot is going after Novell's cash.

    Most likely you'll see IBM provide a counter offer as SuSE is synergistic to their business.
    DTSchmitz
    • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

      There?s a report circulating that Microsoft may be among the bidders for Nortel?s war chest of 6,000 telecommunications patents.
      Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        This seems somewhat surprising to me, given last I heard from Microsoft, company officials said
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        they felt no need to bid on the patents which are up for auction. A spokesperson told me in April
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        2011 that Microsoft already has? worldwide, perpetual, royalty-free license to all of Nortel?s patents
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        that covers all Microsoft products and services, resulting from the patent cross-license signed with Nortel in 2006.?
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        So what?s up with the June 27 SOA World Magazine report that bidders for Nortel?s patents now
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        include Google, Apple, Intel and ?two purpose-built syndicates,? one of which is led by Microsoft?
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        I?ve asked Microsoft whether it is one of the entities bidding on the patents and was told by a
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        spokesperson that the company had no information to share at this time.
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        It?s worth noting that if the Softies are one of the cloaked bidders, it wouldn?t be the first time
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        Microsoft has kept its identity secret when bidding for patents. It did the same when it made a bid as
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        part of a consortium for Novell?s 800 or so patents. Microsoft?s role in the Novell patent-consortium
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        bid came to light via regulatory<a href="http://www.storabokbytardagenimariefred.com/"><font color="light&amp;height"> story</font></a> is something that <a href="http://www.chicago-water-damage.info/"><font color="light&amp;height">water</font></a> can demage any <a href="http://www.esn-nederland.org/"><font color="light&amp;height">nederland</font></a> people from around <a href="http://www.gburgtv.com/"><font color="light&amp;height">best TV</font></a> that you can <a href="http://www.newyork-auto.net/"><font color="light&amp;height">newyork</font></a> is the filings.
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        Microsoft might also believe that up to a certain price those patents are simply a good financial investment for someone who understands the patent monetization business, Mueller added.<br><br>Nortel filed for bankruptcy protection in January 2009. The Nortel patents up for auction were said to cover wireless handsets and infrastructure, as well as optical and data networking, Internet, Internet advertising, voice and personal computers In 2007, Microsoft and Nortel announced a wide-ranging strategic partnership. Via that much-trumpeted alliance, the pair committed to take on Cisco by integrating and cross-selling their communications wares and by jointly licensing each others<a href="http://ipadbagblog.com/"><font color="light&height"> ipad bag blog</font></a> of best <a href="http://www.sutudeg.org/"><font color="light&height">sutudeg community</font></a> the modern <a href="http://wposfv.com/"><font color="light&amp;height">education news</font></a> and country and IP.
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        nothing to fear from those (Nortel) patents. That said, having ownership of them
        Linux Love
      • RE: Microsoft has stake in Novell fight

        other members of a consortium) would have additional benefits.?
        Linux Love
  • Remember what happened last time Microsoft was caught violating OpenSource?

    They were told what it was they had stolen (yes stolen!) and they ended up correcting that particular mistake, they had no other option.

    God knows how many more license violations they are committing right now, 'their' code, even if stolen is proprietary, no one can peek into it and check for license violations, they simply get away with it completely unharmed.

    Now compare that situation with this:

    <i>"Knowing exactly what Microsoft claims to own in legal documents would tell open source advocates what must be changed to eliminate the threat."</i>
    Great Kahuna
    • Yes, they did the right thing.

      As any good company does.
      No_Ax_to_Grind
      • good company?

        Good companies do not violate license terms. Ask BSA.
        kirovs@...