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Final Judgment in SCO v. Novell: SCO Loses Again

  1. SCO's claims for Slander of Title (Count I) and Specific Performance (Count III) are dismissed [...]
  2. SCO's claims for Breach of Contract (Count II), Copyright Infringement (Count IV), and Unfair Competition (Count V) are dismissed [...]
  3. The remaining portions of SCO's claims [...] are voluntarily dismissed with prejudice, without the possibility of renewal following appeal.

Ah, what wonderful words to read. And about time too; It's been going on since January 2004. This should blast a giant hole in SCOs case against IBM since Novell is now authorised to indemnify IBM.

I suggest you hop over to Groklaw’s coverage of the final judgement. As usual it is an excellent read.

Judge Kimball Rules at Last!

Judge Kimball rules in SCO v. Novell! I haven't read it yet myself, just quickly skimmed it enough to see that SCO owes Novell some money ($2,547,817 plus interest probably -- SCO can oppose -- from the Sun agreement) and it had no right to enter into the Sun agreement, but it did have the right to enter into the Microsoft and other SCOsource agreements. Requests for attorneys fees are separate, and that part comes next. Then appeals.

[…] the big picture is this: Judge Kimball did not change anything in his August 10th order, which I was afraid might happen. So, SCO breached its fiduciary duty to Novell, converted funds, and so it has to pay. […] However, Judge Kimball accepted SCO's argument that UnixWare is the latest version of UNIX and that it was the foundation of all the other agreements, even though SYSV was also involved, or so SCO thought. He accepted SCO's argument that if SCO was wrong about owning the copyrights, and it was, then it's too bad for the licensees -- they just got less than they thought they were paying for, and that is a matter for them to work through with SCO. So if EV1, for example, wanted its money back, or part of it, it would have to sue SCO.

From: Groklaw.

Open letter to Novell: Release the patent numbers!

by Sander Marechal

The technology industry has been in a buzz since last Monday's Fortune article in which Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith claims that the GNU/Linux operating system infringes 235 of Microsoft's patents. If GNU/Linux indeed infringes so many patents then it's very curious that Microsoft refuses to tell the community which 235 patents those are.

Gutierrez refuses to identify specific patents or explain how they're being infringed, lest FOSS advocates start filing challenges to them.

Many journalists and editors concluded from this that Microsoft knows it's 235 patents are bogus. But apparently Microsoft is willing to tell someone what those 235 are. They are telling the companies that they sign cross license deals with. Companies such as yourself, Novell.

Horacio Gutierrez, Microsoft vice president of intellectual property and licensing, said that while Microsoft won't discuss specific patents publicly, it has discussed them in private with companies such as Novell Inc. that struck deals with the company to exchange patent royalties for indemnification against litigation.

Source: The Washington Post.

Today you, Novell, claim that GNU/Linux infringes none of the 235 patents that Microsoft is talking about. From your own Novell Open PR blog:

While providing numbers is new, the claims that violations exists are not new. In response to similar Microsoft claims back in November, we put out an open letter from our CEO, Ron Hovsepian, that states our position on this issue. That position hasnít changed.

From that open letter… “We disagree with the recent statements made by Microsoft on the topic of Linux and patents. Importantly, our agreement with Microsoft is in no way an acknowledgement that Linux infringes upon any Microsoft intellectual property.”

I call on you, Novell, to tell the community which patents Microsoft thinks are infringed by the GNU/Linux operating system. You know the patent numbers. Microsoft gave them to you. Now release them so we all can publicly prove what you claim: That GNU/Linux infringes no Microsoft patents. If you do, then you may gain back some of the credibility in the community that you lost when you signed the cross-license deal with Microsoft last year.

Sincerely,

Sander Marechal, GNU/Linux user and developer

The Microsoft-Novell patent deal and the GPL

by Sander Marechal

The news of the Microsoft-Novell deal is hard to miss in the Linux community. The reactions range from very negative to vaguely neutral. The most interesting bit of the agreement for me are the patent clauses. Did Novell sign away it's future by mistake or did it cleverly safeguard the future of Mono, Samba and OpenOffice.org?