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Microsoft Paid Novell $356 Million in '07 147

Posted by timothy
from the mere-pocket-change dept.
Anonymous writes "At the end of this piece at Channelweb.com, it's reported that Microsoft paid Novell $355.6 million last year as part of their 'interoperability' deal. It's no small wonder, then, that Novell executives are saying the deal has been a huge success so far."
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Microsoft Paid Novell $356 Million in '07

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  • by FudRucker (866063) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @08:49AM (#21873582)
    their soul?
    • by jacquesm (154384)
      not sure if a corporation can have a soul, but you really have to wonder. Novell didn't have any single instance of *anything* on the books that they could get that kind of money for if it wasn't associated with unix/linux somehow. It certainly wasn't netware licenses :)
    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @09:44AM (#21873814)
      Details on how to make a stable OS!
    • by jafoc (1151405) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @11:05AM (#21874192) Homepage
      I can't help but think of the claims by Novell's Miguel de Icaza [kdedevelopers.org] that "OOXML is a superb standard" and Novell's further support for OOXML. (For example, they joined the national standardization committee in Switzerland and probably also other countries and voted in favor of OOXML without having previously participated in the technical discussion of the specification's serious shortcomings.)
      • by FudRucker (866063)
        sounds like novell gave their soul to microsoft to me...
      • by Anonymous Coward
        Miguel has been a Microsoft fanboy for a long time before this deal. And I'm not one to use the term "fanboy" lightly: he seems like a dizzy schoolgirl when it comes to them.
    • by mjasay (1141697)
      There is no positive way to see this for the industry. Long term, it's even bad for Novell. Novell has become a vassal to Microsoft [cnet.com] - it can claim to be independent, but when 1/3 of Novell's revenue comes from its top competitor, there is no way it can make independent decisions. It depends on Microsoft for all of its profits, I'd be willing to bet. Sadly, the minute that Microsoft views Novell as a threat, it will simply turn off the spigot and Novell will die. Novell needs to find independent means
    • by VON-MAN (621853)
      Soul?
      What's that then?
      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        I think it's the underside of their foot, and judging by the look of it, they've stepped in something rather unpleasant....
    • Right...and of course, those complaining about Novell dealing with Microsoft wouldn't agree to accept Microsoft's licensing of unspecified and unvalued patents in exchange for also accepting $356 million? I wonder how much would people would let 'appearances' bother them in such a position?
  • Customers? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Weaselmancer (533834) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @08:53AM (#21873600)

    It'd be interesting to see if the money they got from their customers in '07 equals or exceeds that number.

    If it doesn't, I'd think they have a somewhat skewed and short-sighted definition of success. Me, I'd call it getting paid off.

    • by wombatmobile (623057) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @09:27AM (#21873720)

      It'd be interesting to see if the money they got from their customers in '07 equals or exceeds that number.

      Novell, Inc. ( NASDAQ:NOVL ) reported total revenue of $932.5 million dollars for the year to October 2007.

      http://finance.google.com/finance?fstype=ii&q=NOVL/ [google.com]

      • by SpinyNorman (33776) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @11:22AM (#21874270)
        That $932M is revenue (gross receipts). Their gross profit was $672M, and overall they reported a LOSS of $44M for the year.
  • Don't trust them (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nighty5 (615965) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @08:55AM (#21873610)
    It illustrates that Novell can no longer be trusted to push Linux technologies beyond that which is offered by Microsoft.

    • by Idiot with a gun (1081749) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @08:58AM (#21873620)
      Personally, I didn't trust them the moment they made the deal with Microsoft. It showed more of an interest towards their own pocket books than the software or their users. Unlike Red Hat, which promised to protect their customers, and change any infringing code, and Canonical, which I believe offered the same for *buntu users.
      • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward
        Uh... Novell also promised to protect their customers and change any infringing code.

        But guess what? "Changing infringing code" only works for copyrighted code, not code infringing a patent.

        Lern2clue.
        • by Dan Ost (415913)
          If a patent can be worked around, then changing the infringing code would be exactly the way to do it.
      • Thinking with your pocketbook is reasonable. The difficulty is that they badly underestimated Microsoft's willingness to lie, cheat, steal, and poison the well for other travelers who can't afford such large caravans with water, carried in from somewhere else. It's like dealing with Wal-mart: dealing with such a large and profitable company can be a salvation of a small business in tight times, and in theory can be leveraged into making you a larger business. But like Wal-mart, Microsoft squeezes its partne
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by einhverfr (238914)
        My first response on hearing about the deal is "no good can come of this." The fact is-- these companies directly compete in most areas and one is *far* stronger than the other.

        Apple was an unusual case because Microsoft was investing in them during the hight of the DoJ investigations of their anticompetitive behavior. My own thinking is that Microsoft was terribly afraid that Apple exiting the market would mean that they would be broken up or crippled behind very onerous consent decrees. Apple thus was
    • by DMoylan (65079) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @09:34AM (#21873752)
      > Don't trust them

      i actually pity them. been partners of any sort with ms just seems to be the kiss of death.
    • by slyn (1111419) <ozzietheowl@gmail.com> on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @09:39AM (#21873774)
      They've done a lot of the work towards the FOSS drivers for the ATI cards, including recently releasing V1.10 of the RadeonHD adding support for the 3850 and 3870, as well as release 10.3 of OpenSuse, and (AFAIK) have continued business as usual since the MSFT agreement.

      Novell at the moment may not be the most faithful to the GNU ideals at the moment, but I wouldn't go as far as to say that Novell "can no longer be trusted".
      • Re: (Score:1, Interesting)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Novell at the moment may not be the most faithful to the GNU ideals at the moment, but I wouldn't go as far as to say that Novell "can no longer be trusted".

        Well, while I could agree on the substance (after all they haven't done anything against Linux and the FOSS community yet), still their deal with MS stinks: usually when a big corporation like MS sees something interesting in a much smaller one, they buy it with all assets, embrace some products and/or kill the competing ones.
        Not this time, though: MS m

        • Re:Don't trust them (Score:4, Informative)

          by jafoc (1151405) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @11:12AM (#21874220) Homepage
          after all they haven't done anything against Linux and the FOSS community yet

          That is not true.

          For example, their active support for Microsoft's attack on the ODF standard can IMO only be seen as an aggression against the FOSS community.

          • by Anpheus (908711)
            Such internet drama! Should we, the members of the FOSS batten the hatches and man the torpedoes? Clearly if they've made an act of agression toward us we should respond! Postemptively!
          • by einhverfr (238914)
            I dunno. OfficeOpenXML vs ODF is a fairly complex and technical debate which I have generally been loath to jump into. In general, there are things I like about both standards. Programatically OOXML is a better standard in terms of transformation while ODF is a better standard in terms of automatic generation. In general, I think that OOXML is a better standard for office suites' internal formats, while ODF is a more open standard for connecting to non-XML formats. Also the patent issue of OOXML is a m
            • by jafoc (1151405)
              Personally I would like nothing better than for both sides to be willing to push for universal open source adoption of both formats without fear of patent infringement suits.

              The patents issue aside, where's the benefit of having two standards? If one standard is chosen, and it happens to be for fundamental design reasons (which cannot be fixed by extensions) less ideally suited for the task that you want to implement, it's still much less work (and much less bug-prone!) to implement it using the less-ide

              • by einhverfr (238914)
                There is always benefit to having multiple paths available. Separate tools generally excel at separate tasks.

                Just because H.323 was available, does this mean that the IETF should have adopted it instead of RTP/SIP? Obviously when one is largely dealing with TCP/IP networks only, the latter standard is *far* better, but H.323 can be used there too (as well as many other environments-- I would expect it should be reasonably simple to run H.323 over a cell-switched or circuit-switched network for example, wi
      • by LWATCDR (28044)
        You left out driving the stake into SCOs heart.
        The GNU ideals are GNUs. Frankly I find a lot of the GNU rantings to be annoying. I love Linux and use lots of FOSS and contribute to FOSS but I don't like the FSF religion.
        The entire deal with Microsoft is just odd. I have no idea what Novell is getting money for.
        Trust Novell? I don't trust Novell, IBM, Microsoft, or Google. If you trust any company you are going to eventually be disappointed.
    • by wikinerd (809585)
      Upon hearing of the Novell-M$ "interoperability" deal I promptly switched all my SUSE machines to Debian [debian.org] GNU/Linux, and it works great.
  • I used to know some really rabid SUSE fans a few years ago. They would go on and on about how it was the best distro and great YaST was. I haven't heard anything from them in a while. I can only imagine what their opinion on the last year is.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by j_sp_r (656354)
      As long it's a great distro (OpenSuse) I don't see any problem using it. Novel made Yast open source btw, something SUSE never did.
    • by malkavian (9512) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @10:31AM (#21874020) Homepage
      Actually, I think it's a whole non-issue at the moment, until the waters are less muddy, and only time will tell that.
      For interoperability, Novell SLES is pretty pleasant. I work for the NHS in the UK, and moving hospitals away from being almost pure Windows is not an easy thing. SLES fills a lot of niches that Windows currently fills (file server, database platform et.), for a fraction of the cost. One of the things I'm working on is to make greater use of SLES. And if you point to Red Hat, and say "Well, they do the same product, except they're more idealistic", Red Hat don't have a current deal with the NHS (where Novell do, and provide fantastic pricing).
      Couple that with eDirectory, Identity Manager etc. and you've got a lovely heterogenous infrastructure to play with.
      I like Novell. Yes, they took money from the Beast. However, the Beast is currently being watched very carefully, and has a lot of other (probably unexpected) battles to fight.
      I tend to run Ubuntu and Debian for home use (and quick build servers/firewalls). But in business, you need to bring a lot of other factors in. And for something the size of the NHS, alas, you can't always choose the idealistic route. Pragmatism and practicality are large factors.
      As long as SLES keeps on being a great product, performing well, and being a really low cost product (for a commercially supported enterprise grade OS), I'll keep on using it.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        I expect some Marketing Drone in Microsoft is at this moment cooking up their next FUD Campaign around the theme that SUSE is 'sort of ok' if you really, really have to use something other than our fantastic Windows products.
        As far as at least one Microsoft Account manager I know, if they absolutely have to lose a sale to Linux, then it had better be to Novell/SUSE than the devil incarnate called RedHat.

        IMHO, SLES/SLED is just different enough from RHEL/Fedora that I get frustrated when I have to make chang
        • by richlv (778496)
          actually, i've had some experience with both sles and rhel.
          i started with sles, so i might be slightly biased here, but there are several areas where i feel sles is better than rhel.

          from usability viewpoint, yast, with all its problems, seems to be much better than rhel offerings.
          first, yast is a pretty centralised system for configuring things, which feel much better than system-config-something modules that can't even be launched from a single location, as far as i know.
          second, yast offers more modules.
          th
          • I agree that kickstart stinks. But I find that centralized YaST tool to be deadly. If you look carefully, much of it is a simple front-end wrapper to distinct configuration tools. That's a fine approach, but those sub-tools are simply *awful*. The DNS, grub, network and package management tools each have major, major flaws that require hand-manipulation of configuration files to get sensible behavior, then overwrite those edits when you run the YaST toolkit. Frankly, I've preferred to throw out the YaST too
        • C# and the IL specs for .Net code are ECMA and ISO standards at this point.. the heavy patents are around Winforms and ASP.Net ... which are not part of the released spec... however the Gnome apps that are written in mono are neither winforms, or asp.net based, they are GTK based (using GTK#)... which are as safe as any other non-mono gnome app...

          Disclaimer: I like C# and .Net a lot, but am emphatically not a fan of MS's politics... so you may take my opinion as skewed, but the fact is, mono's existance
    • by azenpunk (1080949)
      in the late 9.x versions Suse had the best game in my opinion. their repositories were much larger than mandrakes, ubuntu wasn't around (or hadn't matured yet), it was an easier install than fedora, and it just ran really well. the package management in mandrake wasn't laid out as well either. but with the 10.x versions they've lost some ground. they've changed the backend to the package management and broke it in one version, it was advised to switch to Smart, which i could not stand, and i've had some
    • by oliderid (710055)
      I can only imagine what their opinion on the last year is....I can only imagine what their opinion on the last year is.

      It used to be SuSE and YaST not SUSE or YAST .Why did NoVELL change that?

      The rest is meaningless.

      RaBID SuSE FaN
      (openSUSE still kicks ass)
    • ...but I switched to Linux Mint [linuxmint.com].
    • I advocated and used SuSE on server and desktop and laptop, but three days after the Microsoft-Novell thing hit I dumped the SuSE. Now I'm Debian for server and (K)Ubuntu for desktop. (Ubuntu is Debian with lipstick, by the way)
  • there are two ways to control corporations:

    1. government regulations
    2. free market competition

    in a Free Society the government is supposed to be for The People. and it should act as an arbiter of fairness in respect to the above, insuring that access to the market is available to entrepreneurs, and that monopolies do not form, either in fact or by collusion

    the above sounds like a Pretty Tall Order. But We the People do have all the legal authority necessary to insure that we do have a proper Free Society.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mangu (126918)

      in a Free Society the government is supposed to be for The People. and it should act as an arbiter of fairness in respect to the above, insuring that access to the market is available to entrepreneurs, and that monopolies do not form, either in fact or by collusion

      Unfortunately, it's the government itself, through patents and copyrights, which is acting to perpetuate the existing monopolies.

      A fair society shouldn't have the current intellectual property laws. Patents shouldn't be given to processes and meth

      • Unfortunately, it's the government itself, through patents and copyrights, which is acting to perpetuate the existing monopolies.

        A fair society shouldn't have the current intellectual property laws.

        patents and copyrights are what entice entrepreneurs to make improvements in our circumstances. the protection of intellectual property is literally "the lamp by the golden door" .

        our protection of intellectual property is one of the elements that has made us the prosperous society that we are

        • by Znork (31774) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @11:29AM (#21874320)
          "patents and copyrights are what entice entrepreneurs to make improvements"

          So, let me tell you about this opensource thing...

          "our protection of intellectual property is one of the elements that has made us the prosperous society that we are"

          Our 'protection' of intellectual 'property' has kept us as far less prosperous society than we could have been.

          Competition is what drives innovation and the evolution of technology. Handing out intellectual monopolies slows that innovation and evolution. Protecting someone from competition makes them slow and inefficient; to realize exactly how inefficient you just need to look at the former Soviet state-run businesses, or other state-protected monopolies in the west.

          Just imagine the world we'd be living in today, had technology been allowed to develop competetively. Imagine the medicines we'd have if 'protected' pharmacorps couldnt spend 80% of their revenue on administration and marketing. Imagine the operating systems we'd have if most of the resources spent on them didnt get tied up in a single company that cant even produce a product better than their last one after six years (nevermind being outevolved by a rag-tag bunch of companies and individuals working in a _competetive segment_ with _unprotected_ software).

          Patents and copyrights are a blight upon the economy and upon innovation.
          • open source projects are predicated on an agreement to share work

            and that is OK, -- anyone can agree to place their work in the public domain -- or to reserve a copyright. that is up to the original authors

            but that has no bearing on the fact that the availability of patent and copyright protections have served to help provide financial incentives for the development of many good works

            the absence of such protection is a dis-incentive to spending capital on research and development

            and no, you and John Lennon
          • Please separate patents from copyright.
            Copyright is "I did this, do something different yourself", sounds fair enough.
            Patents is "I do or don't do this, but nobody else does it".

            Even patents aren't evil by themselves but seeing the current state of affairs I prefer them to be unenforceable. Less people being pushed to innovate by patents is better than not being able to use the double linked list.
          • Patents and copyrights are a blight upon the economy and upon innovation.

            You're partially right, but mostly wrong. I don't like how copyright and patents have been applied in this country, but there's absolutely no doubt in my mind that the parent is mostly correct, and you're mostly incorrect. You're right that an open, IP-free society increases competition, which also increases innovation. However, at the same time, it drastically reduces the actual payoff for any innovation. America's economy has thrived almost exclusively for one reason, and one reason only: it has been

            • The purpose of patents is to provide protection to someone who creates something truly unique such that they have the ability to develop that innovation in peace. The example that you provide ("orders of magnitude faster than [current methods]) is an example of the kind of thing that patents were originally intended, and designed, to protect -- something truly new and unique that would probably never have been developed and brought to market if it hadn't been for the protection of patents.

              But, the ultimat

              • I think you missed a key point in my comment: "I don't like how copyright and patents have been applied in this country, but[. . .]".

                I wrote patents professionally for a while (it's a good living, and easy). I agree that patents are completely mishandled and misregulated in this country -- patent examiners can't possibly be expert enough in every field to see what is truly novel and what is just written to make them THINK it's novel.

                And the intersection between granted patents and prosecution of those
        • by Daengbo (523424)
          I would've agreed with you when computer programs didn't have the triple threat of copyright (on the binary and source), trade secret (for the source code), and patents (for the algorithms). The fact that copyright has been extended to ... basically forever doesn't help my opinion of it. Bring back limits, and I'm right there with you.
    • by tomhath (637240)
      The "People" don't need to control the government. The people are the government, that's what democracy (or representational democracy) is all about. Get involved with the political process, work on campaigns, talk to your representatives, vote. Don't just complain about it in Us versus Them terms.
      • hardly

        the government is a huge, out of control bureaucracy

        the people by fiat have representatives who do have the authority to alter the government in any desired manner. but this mechanism is de facto controlled by ?

        = ? = what do you need to get yourself elected? what does anyone need to get elected?

        ==> name recognition

        = ? = how do you get name recognition ?

        answering these questions to yourself *honestly* will help

    • 3. Unfair competition
      4. Moral/ethical pressure
      5. Union actions
      6. Fraud
      7. Monpoly manipulation
  • by themoneyish (971138) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @09:15AM (#21873682)
    Did Novell provide Full Service? Greek? Microsoft, were you happy the encounter? If yes, I have my wallet ready.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Many of us suspect that Microsoft is behind SCO. Could it be that Novell somehow has Microsoft over a barrel?

    It may be that Novell hasn't sold its soul at all. It is really hard to see that Microsoft got any value for its money.
    • by Locutus (9039)
      businesses and the press are discussing and worried about MSFT IP in Linux. Microsoft is getting what they paid for. The fact that it cost them a few hundred million is insigificant. Look, Microsoft has already been willing to spend/lose 10's of billions to just make sure the market in handheld OS's is not dominated by another( namely Palm ). They've been willing to do the same with the game console market.

      Like I said, spending a few hundred million on getting businesses and the press to think Linux and OSS
  • GPL (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Novell can be trusted as long as they use the GPL, since it is mostly incorruptible by its nature. If you start seeing them stray from the GPL, then you can start worrying.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      Which GPL? GPLv3 includes changes aimed very specifically at preventing another of these patent protection deals, and putting a spike in Microsoft attempts to encumber open source projects with patent agreements. The GPL needed to evolve to prevent this and some of the DRM craziness being attempted, and has. But will Novell follow suit by publishing its own software or changes under GPLv3?

      I think not.
  • So it is perhaps MS that is paying for our open source radeonhd driver? See http://wiki.x.org/wiki/radeonhd [x.org]...
  • by 1mck (861167) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @09:42AM (#21873800)
    Years ago Corel was developing WordPerfect for Linux, and the along come Microsoft, and gave them a huge sum of cash to cease all development of WP for Linux, and now look at where they are now...Novell is going to suddenly realize years down the road that they really did sell out, and there's no going back, and it's obvious that the owners of the company don't give 2 shits, so now Microsoft will find some way to weasel Linux from the world. Yay for interoperability...whatever the hell that means, and what is involved!
    • Microsoft will find some way to weasel Linux from the world.

      I certainly hope not

      I think Ms is going to have to hurry unless they are ready to join Old Blue, in the Out to Pasture department

      and the reason I say this is simply that the under-tow of sentiment that I'm sensing now against Ms. is essentially the same as what there was against Old Blue, Back in the Day.

      Dissent started as a whisper, down the Halls of Academia. And grew louder, as voices picked it up in the Computer Room. And the End Results are

    • by Locutus (9039)
      you forgot that Corel was also paid off to dump their Corel Linux OS. That was sold to and/or became Xandros. Microsoft has a history of using its wealth to eliminate competitors and no government anti-trust cases have done anything to stop that. one would have thought that how Microsoft was found to be stuffing the ISO boards to get its proprietary MS OOXML file format passed as a standard, would have sparked some big anti-trust uproar. Nada, just a bunch of bloggers got noticed and a few articles were wr
  • I thought that, in the IT world, progress was supposed to lower costs - witness many technology items that have gotten cheaper over the years. However, when it comes to anti-Linux FUD, it seems the price keeps going *up*.

    Why is that?
  • "Future Periods"? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by erroneus (253617) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @09:47AM (#21873830) Homepage

    Major Customers

    No single customer accounted for more than 10% of our revenue in fiscal 2007, 2006, or 2005. During fiscal 2007, we received $355.6 million from Microsoft related to the Microsoft agreements discussed above, which is being recognized over future periods.
    They received it but aren't recognizing it until later?! What does that mean exactly? Will it be passed on as bonuses to top execs and board members? It sounds like some sort of trick in reporting requirements. "We received a bunch of money, but we don't want to show that we're giving it to the people who made the deal... until later when no one is looking."
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by slashchuck (617840)
      Since it does not represent current year income, the income will be allocated over the number of years represented. Expenditures such as bonuses and other compensation, which may or may not be monetary, are never tied to specific income items. They could be recorded or buried as ordinary expenditures at any time.
    • by Zerth (26112)
      It may be so that their stock doesn't do a rollercoaster as the show a 50% increase this year and then a ~50% decrease next year. If they spread it out over 10 years, then it just pads their bottom line a few percent.
  • 640k (Score:4, Funny)

    by rgravina (520410) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @09:55AM (#21873860)

    Microsoft paid Novell $355.6 million last year

    I would have thought 640k would be enough for anyone.
  • game over? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    What do we even know anymore? How deep does MS go in the USA?

    Does Microsoft's Monopoly Power Extend to Government and Media? [anonymouse.org]

  • Patents? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Fri13 (963421)
    Okay, so Microsoft tells that GNU/Linux (or is it just Linux?) has 253 (?) Microsoft patents and companies should pay for Microsoft for using that technology. BUT, Microsoft pays for Novell big amount of cash and it looks so silly, like Microsoft would be the one who is using 253 ideas of technology and is paying for those companies for using it ;-)
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Locutus (9039)
      but they made sure that Novell also paid them some for each Suse Linux coupon Microsoft sells. But you got the just of it, Microsoft pays Novell because Microsoft says Linux has Microsofts IP. It's because it is all a plan to scare away business from Linux and just a step in the process.

      In the 90's, Microsoft paid a UNIX company to do a port of MS Internet Explorer to HP and/or Solaris and they paid them well. Nobody wanted IE on UNIX but the reason for this was that this one company was a licensee of Micro
  • This is hush-money to make sure Novell doesn't drag MS to court to find out what went on behind the curtains of the SCO show.
  • OK, I am willing enter into a non compete agreement with MSFT. Bill, where do I collect my money?
  • I've got a list of all the reasons Novell sucks now. I'm making a note here: "Huge success".
  • by Jerry (6400) on Tuesday January 01, 2008 @12:23PM (#21874692)
    A "confession" by Ron Hovsepian that "Linux" contains Microsoft IP, even though Microsoft has yet to prove any infringements exist.

    How? By paying Microsoft a ROYALTY for each copy of SLES that it sells Novell is making an implied statement that its distro contains MS IP.

    Ballmer called the payments "an IP bridge". He could have said the payments were an admission of guilt.

    Microsoft has a problem though. They've been claiming that Linux violates their IPs for several years now. The law requires that they inform infringers of the exact infringements so that damages can be mitigated. Microsoft has not done that.

     
  • I am not an expert when it comes to the Novell-MS deal, and I am not an expert on the SCO case either, but what if they are connected? What I mean is this: maybe Microsoft aren't interested in Linux all that much, but they might have some IP that they licensed from SCO, and to avoid any problems with that they contacted Novell with the IP protection idea, seeing as they knew Novell was gonna win. Then the agreement could have evolved to also include other things, such as the whole Linux part that gets all
  • Press Release

    Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has stated that he believes the Microsoft-Novell relationship has been a success for both parties but is just part one of a grand strategy to further cement Microsoft's dominance. Building on that success, Microsoft will now take that strategy to a whole new level: instead of just paying software vendors to not develop for Linux, Microsoft will now pay consumers to use Windows Vista. "It's a win-win for all of us." said CEO Ballmer.

    Gardener analyst Robert Thompson
  • Since this is the new year and everyone is making predections, let me make this one. In a few years Micsosoft will be the driving force for widespread Linux adoption. They will package their own distro. In the end the masses will believe MS created Linux or at least made it usable for the masses.

    I don't know how this will happen, but you have to admit it is so crazy that it could become a reality!

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