tealeaf

Have We Just Witnessed The Death Of Linux?

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I have just read that Microsoft has purchased the rights to UNIX source code.

Based on track record, this is what Bill Gates will do. Having secured the source code and the rights, he will take out a "look and feel" patent on UNIX.

This is basically what he did with Digital Research's "GEM" and other successfully threatening pieces of software. Once this patent is secured, Linux (because it has the same "look and feel") will be required to cease production, even though it is freeware. Also, because Linux is freeware, it (we) do not have the economical clout to beat Bill Gates. Still, he needs the money, doesn't he? The irony of this is further compounded by the fact that Microsoft will probably incorporate all the tasty bits of code from Linux before they secure their patent.

From my own point of view, this will not put my money into Microsoft's pocket. Quite the opposite. Having kept a careful eye on the ever rising costs of OS and software, I am more inclined to turn off my PC and let it rot in the corner. I'm sure that many within the Internet community will share my sentiments.

The Internet has ceased to be an international resource for scholars and others and has, quite simply, been reduced to dollars and cents. Still, it was great while it lasted.

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I suggest you read whatever you have read a bit more carefully ;) I guess it's some variation of the "SCO sues IBM for IP patent violations".

Microsoft can't buy "Unix" from SCO. I think they have bought the right to use some portions of the code. To put it in simple term "No, we have not witnessed the 'death of Linux'"

SCO is more or less dead though, or should be <_<

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Tom's Hardware had the "MS buys Linux" April Fool....

AFAIK MS is planning to make Unix/Linux versions of some of it's software (e.g. Media Player).

Jan

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Don't worry too much. IBM, Sun, HP and Fujitsu have way more money (in the case of IBM and HP) and way more clout (in the case of all of the above) and will buy out SCO right out from underneath any MS aquisition if necessary.

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Microsoft cant licence a property right, then turn around and sue others who make products that "look & feel" like the licenced protpery. thats upto the property owner.

This move will, if anything save linux. As SCO started going down the drain, they started sueing poeple to get licence fees from the linux crowd. This would have pushed linux prices up, limited the utility and availablity of downloaded versions, and been generally bad for linux users and publishers. Now that SCO has a good income base, perhaps they'll not demand so much from the linux publishers.

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MS simply licensed some unix patents. They didn't buy the rights to those patents.

The reason they did this is probably to avoid any potential lawsuit, but also to fund the company that can make life difficult for Redhat.

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as I've said before (maybe not on here, but to some of my computing friends)...the weirdest thing that could possibly happen is if Microsoft was to make a version of Linux or UNIX. Since they've already publicly "attacked" the Linux platform, therefore; it would stand to reason that the only option left would be the UNIXes aimed for corporate systems.

IF that was the case, I would honestly really like to see what would happen considering that just about everybody knows that UNIXes for mainframes have that industrial strength robustness that Windows simply cannot provide.

I dunno.....I think that it would be as much interesting, as it would be weird. And IF, they make it better than current mainframe UNIXes (especially in hardware support - i.e. along the lines of *BSD/Linux) or make it similar to their Windows environment, where you don't need to have a M.Sc. in Computer Science to run it, (but it would be nice to have.)

It'd be something for the MIT guys who made "the Dawn for ATI" another little project and something for them to think about.

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What I think Microsoft upto, is perhaps called operation borg...not so much as release a version of unix, but rather use unix technology to improve the robustness (is that a word?) and reliability of the OS.

Ive heard that the next version of Windows ("Longhorn"), will not be marketed as a windows product at all, it will have a new name, (perhaps "doors" ;) This will be done to avoid the DOJ anti trust settlements which only restricts Microsoft's behavour on "Windows" products. (new products, new names, new lawsuits, make the government spend a couple of billion, and 10 years to make you stop doing what they want, and by the time they get microsoft to stop doing it, it'll be a moot point because the plaintiff has been wipped out, "netscaped")

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Microsoft cant licence a property right, then turn around and sue others who make products that "look & feel" like the licenced protpery. thats upto the property owner.

This move will, if anything save linux. As SCO started going down the drain, they started sueing poeple to get licence fees from the linux crowd. This would have pushed linux prices up, limited the utility and availablity of downloaded versions, and been generally bad for linux users and publishers. Now that SCO has a good income base, perhaps they'll not demand so much from the linux publishers.

That's exactly what they successfully did with Digital Research. Don't say they can't do it, that's how they make their money.

Microsoft is a lot like Satan - incapable of creating anything themselves but expert at stealing or aquiring by other means, copying and then making a huge profit out of it.

I've seen it happen before, many times, and we'll no doubt see it happen right up until the Second Coming.

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tealeaf, you're starting to sound like a troll.

You start off with a subject title that spells immanent destruction because of some isolated

news item. (note, I am referring to the inflammatory nature of the line itself, not the

relationships between the news and associated companies)

You claim to have experience with the history of the computer industry, but can't tell the

difference between a company purchasing a software license, and the outright purchase of

an operating system that is (quite literally) impossible to purchase outright.

Plus, there are a lot of posters here who have an admitted bias against Microsoft, but none

seem to carry it to a degree of religous fervor that you seem to apply in your last comments.

I'm just wondering what you're really trying to get at, if it is not just to try and start a flamewar

of some sort?

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Thanks Occupant. Nice settling.

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tealeaf, you're starting to sound like a troll.

You start off with a subject title that spells immanent destruction because of some isolated

news item.    (note, I am referring to the inflammatory nature of the line itself, not the

relationships between the news and associated companies)

  You claim to have experience with the history of the computer industry, but can't tell the

difference between a company purchasing a software license, and the outright purchase of

an operating system that is (quite literally) impossible to purchase outright.

Plus, there are a lot of posters here who have an admitted bias against Microsoft, but none

seem to carry it to a degree of religous fervor that you seem to apply in your last comments.

I'm just wondering what you're really trying to get at,  if it is not just to try and start a flamewar

of some sort?

It doesn't bother me whether I'm sounding like a troll or not. What I'm trying to do is to get the Internet community to close ranks and draw the line as far as Linux and freeware are concerned.

The "imminent destruction" is based on experience with PCs and Microsoft since 1985. Believe me, this company doesn't even fart unless there's an ulterior motive behind it. I figured out that one of the reasons for their success was the general complacency abounding within groups of PC users.

With regard to Linux, has anyone experienced any anomolies with the 2.4 kernel? I received a newsletter about it this morning but it was a little vague saying only that there were some problems interfacing with DoS.

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Please make note of these articles:

http://www.eetimes.com/sys/news/OEG20030527S0020

http://www.linuxtag.org/2003/en/press/rele...leases.xsp?id=3

Linux wont be disappearing any time soon.

Not sure I undestand this part of the second article:

Until a few weeks ago, SCO itself distributed the Linux kernel GNU General Public License (GPL) as a member of the UnitedLinux alliance. Thus even if SCO owns parts of the Linux kernel, it has made them into Free Software by distributing them under the GPL.

So this is saying that if you release a version of Linux that -- unbeknownst to you -- contains your own proprietary software, you have just released that software to the public?

I don't think so. I'm not sure if that has an appropriate analogy, but it is basically underhanded. If Linux violates patents on other software, once this is discovered, those parts should be removed OR Linux distributors can in fact be held accountable.

Of course, this is all muddied up by the fact that SCO isn't telling anyone what the infringements are yet...but assuming they do (and assuming the patents/IP are in fact infringed), how with the Linux community respond?

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The linux kernel can only be released under GPL. The theory is, once SCO released a linux distro they put their stamp of approval on the contents.

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At one stage, in the development of the modern PC, most of the hardware manufacturers got their heads together and decided to develope a standard for PC slots. They came up with EISA (you might recall.)

Big Blue was sticking to it's guns with PCI.

The outcome of that tussle is well known, although we all accept PCI and PCI hotslots these days.

The fact of the matter is that Big Blue sets the standards. Over the years, we have become accostomed to IBM's business ideas and we all accept them. Their business philosophy is not "Take It All" but rather "Take A Little Bit Of It All." If you have a PC or a server which counts up to 640kB before counting extended memory, you've made a small contribution to Big Blue.

Microsoft has enjoyed close cooperation with Big Blue over the years. All that appears to be changing.

The reason for all of this panicking by Microsoft and SCO was sparked off by this statement back in January. If you can't be bothered to read the whole article, just scroll down to the subtitle about Microsoft and read that paragraph.

The Empire Strikes Back

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Last I checked, Intel designed the Peripheral Components Interconnect, not IBM. Also, last time I checked, IBM and MS haven't gotten along all that well together since their joing GUI project fell through (became Windows, then IBM developed OS/2 to compete).

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The linux kernel can only be released under GPL. The theory is, once SCO released a linux distro they put their stamp of approval on the contents.

So it's somewhat akin to getting your home burgled, then signing a contract with someone to purchase new stuff that indemnifies them of any wrongdoing, and later finding out that some of the stuff you bought is yours? Something like that....

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The linux kernel can only be released under GPL. The theory is, once SCO released a linux distro they put their stamp of approval on the contents.

So it's somewhat akin to getting your home burgled, then signing a contract with someone to purchase new stuff that indemnifies them of any wrongdoing, and later finding out that some of the stuff you bought is yours? Something like that....

No one forced SCO to jump onto the Linux train. They would have had the source available to them. They should have checked the source of any program in the distro they wanted to include. SCO wanted a free ride on the Linux train and has now discovered they may have paid for all the tickets.

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To be more specific on the PCI issue, IBM actually developed the MCA bus because they didn't feel PCs could compete in the server market, and PCI of course changed all of that, and it was developed by (gasp!) Intel in an effort to move their chips into the higher end markets, and they used EISA as a kind of bridge between the two camps. The original use for PCI busses was to create SMP i486 machines to run Novel Netware on, but that has obviously since changed significantly. As an aside, PCI was actually designed on Sun workstations using the bus that PCI would eventually replace - SBus.

And on the 640k of memory thing, that again wasn't IBM, that was actually Intel and Microsoft. While 32 bit processors can address 4,294,967,269 bytes of memory (4 GibiB), the 80286 that DOS made the most headway on used 16 bit addressing, limiting it to 65,536 bytes of memory (64 KibiB), but using some nifty tricks it was alocated in ten byte segments, giving rise to the 640 KibiB memory limitation (as opposed to the 64 KibiB on the older 8086 parts). When MS moved DOS into the 386 with its 32 bits of virtual address space, they left the first 640 KibiB as a kind of legacy section for 16 bit processes and then used Extended and Expanded memory to fill the gap upwards (Expaned used larger pages and 16 bit addressing of those pages and Extended actually used 32 bit addressing) as well as the high memory area and created the need for the 15-16 MB memory hole. All of this was Intel/Microsoft, IBM didn't have anything to do with it, it was simply a design limitation of the processors that got built into DOS and has been with us ever since, even though all of the way back to the 386 Intel's chips could put 16 bit address space anywhere it wanted in the 32 bit address space, Microsoft left it down in the first 16 bits of conventional memory.

Now you might be asking, what has IBM thought up of? Well, if you own a laptop made within the past ten years, pay homage to IBM. With their ThinkPad, they changed the face of laptop making by creating a form factor that everybody uses today. Like your keyboard? Again, IBM. Also, the keyboards that today are considered the most rugged and have the most tactile feel and best layouts are IBMs, as they have been since the days of the IBM Selectric. That little pointing stick in the middle of your keyboard on most laptops and some desktop keyboards? Thank IBM again, it actually increases productivity by up to 20% (you don't move your hands from the keyboard), and since the patent ran out some years back everybody's been using it. RS232? Partially IBM, if not completely. ATA? IBM again for the most part did alot of work in the begening, hence its name being drived from the PC/AT. VGA interface?... did you think it was nVidia? Parallel ports? The floppy drive interface? The size of your motherboard (ATX is simply AT rotated 90 degrees)? APICs for dual processing (IBM had alot of invluence in this one)? Warm-swap devices (ThinkPad 760CD) and PCMCIA (IBM ThinkPads)? The shape of your power cables? Size of the expansion slots? Size of the expansion bays? Need I say more. IBM has had its had quite mucking around in the PC industry since they invented it, and the laptop industry as we know it as well.

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The linux kernel can only be released under GPL. The theory is, once SCO released a linux distro they put their stamp of approval on the contents.

So it's somewhat akin to getting your home burgled, then signing a contract with someone to purchase new stuff that indemnifies them of any wrongdoing, and later finding out that some of the stuff you bought is yours? Something like that....

No one forced SCO to jump onto the Linux train. They would have had the source available to them. They should have checked the source of any program in the distro they wanted to include. SCO wanted a free ride on the Linux train and has now discovered they may have paid for all the tickets.

Ah, I see. The onus was always on them to examine all the source code.

Now they want to sue others because they couldn't be bothered? Screw 'em.

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It's true what you're saying, jec252, but it's a truth with modification.

IBM didn't actually make many of the components in their first PCs. I think the original configuration was something like 8088 from Intel, BIOS from Phoenix, HD from Seagate, controller from Western Digital and so on. The thing is that they established a standard at a time when the industry were all pulling in different directions. They have remained a stabilising factor since the introduction of the PC. I know all about working with 64kB of memory lol (ever get into overlay swapping?)

Bearing that in mind, it has always been other manufacturers who have laid the ground work and research on PC components but, it's only been the one's that IBM approved that have lasted. (Apple is the exception to the rule.) Sun have (last I heard) gone more and more for the dedicated workstation approach rather than the universal PC.

I've worked a lot with Novell over the years and am familiar with their developement. This is another solid company which has been prominent in the developement of PC networking. They too have accepted Linux and have developed their latest version of Netware to accomodate this (6.5 beta.)

IBM has made it's share of "blunders" (OS2, Token Rings etc.) and has learned by them. We have all benfited by it.

Let's face it, isn't it better to have a few million hackers working on a new version of an OS, just because it's fun rather than a couple of thousand who do it for a living? Stupid little things like :blink: smileys were derived that way. They're not essential for the function of the PC but they do make life a bit brighter (imo.)

I have found the global PC-community invaluable in my time and I hope that I, too, have been able to make some contributions of my own.

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