Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

Microsoft’s Got Nothin’ – The Patent “War” Against Linux

Filed under
Linux
Microsoft
Legal

In the last three years, Microsoft claims to have entered into over 600 licensing agreements with companies small and large over alleged patent violations in "Linux". One consistent feature of all these agreements is that their contents are unknown. No one, other than Microsoft and the relevant "licensee", knows which parts of "Linux" violate which patents. Another consistent feature is that most of the "licensees" are small companies without the resources to take on Microsoft in a patent claim. However, there are a number of larger or more high profile companies that have also entered into such agreements, including Amazon, Novell, Xandros, Turbolinux, TomTom and most recently HTC. The whole situation is clouded in mystery under a veil of PR speak and mumbo jumbo. So what the hell is going on? What can we deduce from what we know so far?

The Who

The identity of the companies that have entered into these arrangements is an important factor to consider. Most of the companies involved are small, and presumably have small, or non-existent patent portfolios; basically companies vulnerable to attack by a company with the financial power, and massive patent portfolio, of Microsoft. These are companies that, when faced with a patent claim by Microsoft, will happily enter into a "friendly" licensing agreement, rather than risk death by a thousand patent wielding lawyers.

rest here




More in Tux Machines

How To Make Good Use Of 'grep' Command

​Linux and UNIX systems come with a shell command known as ‘grep’. This simply looks for a specified text, or pattern, in a file or an entire directory. The most common usage is for quickly searching a file for occurrences of a pattern, which can be in plain text, or in the form of a regular expression. Here, the patterns used will be simple text rather than regular expressions. Read
more

Android Leftovers

An Early Look At Linux 4.16 Performance On Five Systems

Here are some preliminary benchmarks of the Linux 4.16 development kernel compared to Linux 4.15 stable on five different systems. Last week I began testing out the Linux 4.16 kernel on a few different boxes and it's been going rather well (sans the ongoing AMD Raven Ridge Linux issues...). For some initial Linux 4.16 kernel benchmarks I have results today to share for a Core i5 6600K, Core i7 6800K, Xeon E3-1280 v5, Core i9 7980XE, and Ryzen 7 1800X as a few of the available boxes for testing. Tests on other hardware and a greater variety of tests will be coming in the days and weeks ahead as Linux 4.16 continues to stabilize. Read more

Oracle open-sources DTrace under the GPL

Oracle appears to have open-sourced DTrace, the system instrumentation tool that Sun Microsystems created in the early 2000s and which has been beloved of many-a-sysadmin ever since. As noted by developer Mark J. Wielaard, this commit by an Oracle developer shows that something is afoot. Read more