Novell responds to Microsoft

Andrew Jorgensen andrew.jorgensen at
Tue Nov 21 11:50:09 MST 2006

On 11/21/06, Grant Shipley <gshipley at> wrote:
> On 11/21/06, Hill, Greg <grhill at> wrote:
> > I've been saying that for years (because Netware basically died off),
> > but they've managed to survive this long.  I think it'll be unlikely
> > that this is the thing that kills them off.
> I don't think this will kill them as they have a lot of great products
> (IDM, Zen, iPrint, etc).  This might be the thing that kills their
> Linux OS division though.

I still think it will be good for Novell.  Once the smoke clears
customers will see that they're safer with SLES than with something
else and if anyone ever actually puts their software under GPL3 (many
will I'm sure) then that will only mean that Microsoft's promise not
to sue must be extended to everyone.

According to Eben Moglen:

"Suppose GPL3 says something like, 'if you distribute (or procure the
distribution), of a program (or parts of a program) - and if you make
patent promises partially to some subset of the distributees of the
program - then under this license you have given the same promise or
license at no cost in royalties or other obligations to all persons to
whom the program is distributed'."

"If GPL 3 goes into effect with these terms in it, Novell will
suddenly becomes a patent laundry; the minute Microsoft realizes the
laundry is under construction it will withdraw."

This is not bad for Novell (maybe not as good as it could have been,
but not bad).  It might be bad for MS though.

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