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Trademarking Linux: Some Pay License Fee, Some Don't

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Linux

Red Hat, the number one Linux distributor, said it does not. Novell, the number two Linux distro, said it does.

Five years after Linus Torvalds and his supporters began to take steps to protect the Linux trademark, the issue has arisen again.

"You may or may not be aware that it is your legal responsibility to obtain a license from the Linux Mark Institute before you are allowed to use the word 'Linux' as part of your product or service name or brand," the letter states.

Red Hat, the leading enterprise Linux company, currently does not have the Linux license from the LMI. Mark Webbink, Red Hat's Deputy General Counsel, in a statement sent to internetnews.com, said: "We have not taken a license nor do we intend to. Beyond that, we do not wish to comment further at this time on the actions of LMI."

Novell, however, is singing a different tune on the issue. Novell spokesperson Bruce Lowry told internetnews.com: "We do have a license for use of the Linux trademark, but we haven't made public its terms."

Gael Duval, founder of Mandriva Linux, told internetnetnews.com that as far as he knows, Mandriva does not pay to use the Linux trademark.

Alex Banh, CEO of Sun Wah Linux, told internetnews.com that the company is in the process of paying for the sublicense and expects to have it completed by the end of the month.

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