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Novell-Microsoft deal targeted by software group

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SUSE

The non-profit group that owns rights to much of the Linux operating system says it will seek to undermine a controversial deal between Microsoft Corp. and Novell Inc. through a new software licensing agreement to be unveiled on Wednesday.

The two companies announced a business partnership in November that included a cross-patent protection agreement that some critics say implies Microsoft has legal rights to Linux, the cooperatively developed software that is gaining ground with corporate users.

"We need to make sure such deals don't make a mockery of the goals of free software," Peter Brown, executive director of the Free Software Foundation, said in an interview with Reuters late on Monday.

While open-source software is free, it also has become big business. An industry of consultants and other services supports it, and corporations contribute heavily to open-source development.

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Linux Group Not Very Bright

The licensing group that controls the Linux open-source operating system is intent on crushing a deal between Microsoft (MSFT) and Novell (NOVL). The partnership would allow the two companies to jointly market Windows and Linux to enterprise customers.

It Microsoft walks away from its deal with Novell, it could decide to sue all Linux distributors for intellectual property infringement. It legal resources are powerful enough to cripple the growth of Linux going forward.

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"It legal resources are

"It legal resources are powerful enough to cripple the growth of Linux going forward."

Right. Microsoft vs. the world. Microsoft would win? I doubt that. There are too many countries and too many users of Open Source and Linux. IF Microsoft decided to do this, they'd shoot themselves in the foot because everyone would want to know what Linux was if they outlawed it.

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Reuters gets it wrong, again

According to Reuters, the "Linux camp" is trying to "sabotage" the deal between Microsoft and Novell. One wonders if Reuters has a special interest in slinging misinformation about the Linux community, or just deeply misunderstands the Linux community and can't be bothered to get it right.

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