Microsoft vs Foss

In: Computers and Technology

Submitted By lordvoo
Words 587
Pages 3
In 2006, when Microsoft Corp. stated that the Linux kernel and other software’s violated their patents, deal has been struck between the FOSS community and Microsoft. Some customers actually entered into direct patent licenses with Microsoft and including some "major brand-name companies" in financial services, health care, insurance and information technology. (He says they don't want to be identified, presumably because they fear angering the FOSS community.) Others wanted Microsoft to work out the patent issues directly with the commercial distributors like Red Hat and Novell. (Red Hat has about 65 percent of the paid Linux server market, according to IDC, while Novell has 26 percent.) Microsoft and Novell agreed not to sue each other's customers for patent infringement. That would be okay, because it's something that the GPL does not address. On those terms, Novell agreed to give Microsoft a percentage of all its Linux revenue through 2011 (or a minimum of $40 million). The pact also included a marketing collaboration. Microsoft agreed to pay Novell $240 million for "coupons" that it could then resell to customers (theoretically for a profit), who would, in turn, trade them in for subscriptions to Novell's Linux server software. In addition, Microsoft gave Novell another $108 million as a "balancing payment" in connection with the patent part of the deal. It might seem counterintuitive that Microsoft would end up paying millions to Novell when Microsoft is the one trying to get royalties for its patents. Microsoft's explanation is that this balancing payment was calculated as it would be in any cross-licensing deal: Novell has valuable network-computing patents that Microsoft products may infringe, and since Microsoft's products bring in so much more revenue than Novell's, Microsoft owed a balance. Microsoft and Novell unveiled their…...

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