APLawrence.com -  Resources for Unix and Linux Systems, Bloggers and the self-employed
RSS Feeds RSS Feeds











(OLDER) <- More Stuff -> (NEWER) (NEWEST)
Printer Friendly Version
->
-> Microsoft, Linux and Patents


Microsoft, Linux and Patents




At http://www.no-lobbyists-as-such.com/ florian-mueller-blog/ballmer-linux/ (link dead, sorry) we're reminded that Microsoft wants Linux dead. Ballmer is once again making noise about patents.

Unfortunately, Microsoft likely does have patents it could use against Linux. IBM can probably be replied upon to fight back on the side of Linux with its own patents - supposedly they've called Microsoft patent bluffs in the past just by pointing out that they also have stacks of patents and idle lawyers ready to look for violations by Windows code. However, Microsoft might now be willing to risk the battle.

Microsoft is not in a happy place right now. Vista is delayed, and both Apple and Linux are gnawing at its toes. The increasing interest in virtualization and particularly in package/OS bundling like VMware Player is a bumpy road for Microsoft because of OS licensing. Microsoft doesn't want its OS sales pirated, but it doesn't want to miss out on that market either. Linux apps can be shipped with a free OS; Microsoft apps cannot.

If Microsoft could control the VM machine itself, they could much more easily deal with the OS licensing problem. However, their product hasn't competed well against VMware and a promised upgrade has been delayed yet again.

Microsoft's last patent skirmish over FAT filesystems didn't end well for them, at least for now. But money talks, as we all know, and Microsoft can talk a lot more loudly than most of us. The FAT patent actually illustrates why Microsoft may be able to do real damage to Linux: a lot of what makes Linux viable as an alternative OS is its ability to interoperate with Microsoft products and other devices that follow Micrsoft standards. When you seek compatability and familarity, you are bound to brush the line.

Some say this is all just empty threats, and they could be right. But people don't usually make threats unless they feel some need to do so. Microsoft is threatened by Linux, and could carry through with patent atacks. Just because its been all noise in the past doesn't mean they'll never play this hand. Or they might do something else entirely. A feint with patents could be a deliberate distraction to cover their real intent.

Whatever Ballmer means or doesn't mean, it's unlikely that Microsoft is going to stand idly and watch Linux siphon away important business. We of course hope that they remain impotent or distracted until it is too late.




If this page was useful to you, please help others find it:  





Comments?




More Articles by - Find me on Google+



Click here to add your comments
- no registration needed!


Don't miss responses! Subscribe to Comments by RSS or by Email

Click here to add your comments


If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a Gravatar

Kerio Samepage


Have you tried Searching this site?

Unix/Linux/Mac OS X support by phone, email or on-site: Support Rates

This is a Unix/Linux resource website. It contains technical articles about Unix, Linux and general computing related subjects, opinion, news, help files, how-to's, tutorials and more. We appreciate comments and article submissions.

Publishing your articles here

Jump to Comments



Many of the products and books I review are things I purchased for my own use. Some were given to me specifically for the purpose of reviewing them. I resell or can earn commissions from the sale of some of these items. Links within these pages may be affiliate links that pay me for referring you to them. That's mostly insignificant amounts of money; whenever it is not I have made my relationship plain. I also may own stock in companies mentioned here. If you have any question, please do feel free to contact me.

I am a Kerio reseller. Articles here related to Kerio products reflect my honest opinion, but I do have an obvious interest in selling those products also.

Specific links that take you to pages that allow you to purchase the item I reviewed are very likely to pay me a commission. Many of the books I review were given to me by the publishers specifically for the purpose of writing a review. These gifts and referral fees do not affect my opinions; I often give bad reviews anyway.

We use Google third-party advertising companies to serve ads when you visit our website. These companies may use information (not including your name, address, email address, or telephone number) about your visits to this and other websites in order to provide advertisements about goods and services of interest to you. If you would like more information about this practice and to know your choices about not having this information used by these companies, click here.

pavatar.jpg

This post tagged:

       - Linux
       - Microsoft
       - Unix















My Troubleshooting E-Book will show you how to solve tough problems on Linux and Unix systems!


book graphic unix and linux troubleshooting guide



Buy Kerio from a dealer
who knows tech:
I sell and support

Kerio Connect Mail server, Control, Workspace and Operator licenses and subscription renewals



Click and enter your name and phone number to call me about Kerio® products right now (Flash required)