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Symantec Sues Microsoft, May Delay Vista

CowboyNeal posted more than 8 years ago | from the delays-other-than-tom dept.

303

AuMatar writes "Symantec filed a lawsuit against Microsoft over patents on the volume management technology in Vista. They're seeking an injunction to stop Vista from being sold until the suit is completed. Given the recent Supreme Court ruling it should be interesting to see if the injunction is granted, since Symantec does produce software which uses the patent. If it is granted, expect MS to settle to prevent another Vista delay."

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What Delay? (-1, Troll)

Coplan (13643) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362769)

We already have Windows XP with skins.

Re:What Delay? (1)

Monkeys!!! (831558) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362778)

True, but we don't have crippling DRM in XP.

Re:What Delay? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363072)

No, just crippling Product Activation.

Fine, delay it (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15362774)

Suits me just fine. I don't care if it ships in 2012.

Re:Fine, delay it (4, Funny)

Mistshadow2k4 (748958) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363000)

Ah, that would explain those ancient Mayan predictions of something terrible happening to the human race in 2012.

Re:Fine, delay it (1)

pallmall1 (882819) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363156)

Ah, that would explain those ancient Mayan predictions of something terrible happening to the human race in 2012.

The POPEs, don't forget the POPEs [newsmax.com] !

No balls.... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15362784)

So now they pay someone else to help them delay Vista. LOL how pathetic.......

Interesting ploy (4, Interesting)

bblazer (757395) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362785)

What Symantec is doing is rather interesting. Either asking for an injunction is to truly stop MS from causing their business damage, or it is just a lever to get into MS's checkbook. Either way, it is going to be interesting to see how this one plays out. While Symantec is not the 600lb gorilla the MS is, it is certainly in the 300lb range.

Re:Interesting ploy (-1, Troll)

needacoolnickname (716083) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362807)

Symantec does a really good job all on their own causing their business damage and business and homes.

Re:Interesting ploy (4, Insightful)

ltwally (313043) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362953)

Sounds an aweful lot like extortion to me. If they'd initiated this lawsuit a year ago, that'd have been one thing... but instead, they chose to take Microsoft to court as launch-day comes close.

"Pay us some money, or we'll drag out this court thing and screw over your launch date, and cost you a bunch of money anyways."

Re:Interesting ploy (5, Interesting)

sdnoob (917382) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363051)

a. symantec's bottom line needs the influx of settlement cash

b. they've got no chance in hell of finishing vista-compatible products in time, so they need another delay

c. they actually have a case.

Re:Interesting ploy (4, Interesting)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363135)

d. Symantec has been in talks with microsoft for a while now and microsoft thought they could steam roll over them like they have been accused of doing to so many other companies in the past.

E. all of the above.

Re:Interesting ploy (1)

sdnoob (917382) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363157)

that seems to be happening a lot more these days. companies flexing muscles as a negotiation tool. the riaa against xm radio, dell using amd against intel, and countless others.

Re:Interesting ploy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363149)

And hopefully we get a bit of a share increase - we need it for christ sake!

On top of that, something inside me would just love for Vista to slip again.

Sick of Lawsuits? (5, Interesting)

JoshuaJarman (974909) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363227)

While I don't doubt that Symantec has a valid point and that MS is using some of their IP without licensing it I have to ask...

Am I the only person sick to death of all the lawsuits and patents?

It seems like the world is getting more and more "locked down".
There is less and less anyone can do without knowingly or unknowlingly trampling someone else's IP.
To make matters worse there are Patent Trolls, locking up broad patents with the hopes of suing people to make money.
Those who can't sue.

All this has lead me to question the presumptions behind both copyrights and patents.
They were originally designed to spur innovation by protecting the people who invest their time and resources to research and develop new products or create original content.
It *SEEMS* to me that both are now acheiving the oppsite goal and limiting and hurting innovation.

While I don't think we can just get rid of either overnight, I think some careful consideration needs to go into reforming the laws to make sure that they serve their original purposes.

Just some thoughts that this discussion brought up for me...Cheers.

By the time Vista comes out... (3, Funny)

Hairball6494 (975716) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362786)

... I'm sure it will be time for MS to announce their next generation of OS. or maybe server. who likes using 3 year old server software???

Re:By the time Vista comes out... (5, Funny)

not already in use (972294) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362867)

3 years is about how long it takes for a windows release to become stable.

Re:By the time Vista comes out... (1)

Firehed (942385) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363025)

Actually, we already know about Vienna. News of it was quite a while back, too (not long after Longhorn became Vista, if memory serves). At least they're thinking about the future... though thinking about the present might help sales a bit.

Re:By the time Vista comes out... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363082)

Actually, Vienna was announced bfore Vista, and Vista was introduced as a stepping stone between XP and Vienna

Delayed?? (5, Funny)

Ritalin16 (867772) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362800)

What? Vista might be delayed? I'm shocked.... SHOCKED!!

Re:Delayed?? What an OMINOUS name... (1)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363214)

Maybe Vista won't see the light of day...

Re:Delayed?? (1)

jkrise (535370) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363216)

Actually, this could be a ruse... Symantec probly needs a few more years for their anti-virus products on Vista. And the built-in anti-spyware anti-malware stuff in Vista might break competing products with every Windows update...

Volume management technology? (1)

neuro.slug (628600) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362801)

Wait a second. What code are they using? Is there some sort of automated backup in Windows? I didn't think any work was being done on the FS, so it seems that the code they allegedly stole isn't deeply coupled with the OS, right?

-- n

Re:Volume management technology? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15362891)

It's not necessary code that MS have stolen, but used a concept that have been patented by Symantec. Welcome to the 21st century IP battlefield.

Re:Volume management technology? (1)

not already in use (972294) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362893)

Well it's not necessarily code, but an process that symantec patented. My guess is its something to do with partitioning.

Re:Volume management technology? (5, Informative)

siraim (473110) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362981)

Symantec purchased Veritas. Veritas wrote the volume manager (Disk Management in the mmc) that is used by Windows 2000 and later. If you check the registry, you'll find reference to the veritas volume manager.

Re:Volume management technology? (5, Informative)

Random Data (538955) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362987)

Dynamic disks, shadow copy, etc. are all Veritas (now Symantec) products that MS licensed. Presumably MS are pushing something along these lines that'll interfere with Symantec's storage management market, so Symantec are getting nervous.

TFA is light on details as to exactly what bits are violating an agreement, but given this stuff has been around since Windows 2000 it's fairly safe to say it's reasonably well embedded into the OS - lots of stuff depends on those hooks now.

Irony! (5, Insightful)

crhylove (205956) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362805)

How many people think this is hillarious since windows is the only OS symantec can make a profit on, since it is the only one that performs poorly enough to NEED something like symantec?

Think about it, how many of us linux users are regularly downloading a virus cleaning program?

Symantec suing MS is like Karl Rove suing the republican party. It may be valid, but one would not exist without the other. That's just funny to me.

rhY

Re:Irony! (3, Informative)

WedgeTalon (823522) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362828)

I would completely disagree with that needing symantec bit. In fact, I find that XP systems run BETTER without their crap. Just slap on one of the free antivirus out there and remove any pre-installed crapware and you're good to go.

Re:Irony! (4, Funny)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363152)

It makes you wonder if the reason Vista needs so much proccessor and memory was because they have symantec code in there.

Re:Irony! (0)

not already in use (972294) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362918)

OS X is a growing market... Symantec may be looking elsewhere.

Re:Irony! (-1, Troll)

PaulBu (473180) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362952)

Well, I feel that you are thinking like a (hopefully non- ;-) ) consumer of Windows and whatever antivirus program Symantec sells. If you think about this move from Symantec's business perspective, it is quite sound: Was not Vista supposed to come with the whole bunch of anntiviral tools from that otehr anti-virus company MS bought, pre-installed?
If yes, than the most lucrative segment of Symantec's
business is gone, they would have to re-cast themselves as,
say "Linux security audit providers" (using their well-
known brand!), and for that they need time which this move
is buying...

Just my $0.02,

Paul B.

Re:Irony! (2, Informative)

Columcille (88542) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363200)

IIRC, MS isn't planning to bundle anti-virus software with Vista. Their own package, Windows Live Onecare [windowsonecare.com] , is a yearly subscription service which itself bundles spyware and virus protection, as well as general system maintenance tools. A challenge to Symantec, but not the bundled threat other MS products have been. Windows Defender [microsoft.com] , their anti-spyware product, is available as a free download (and I think it will be bundled with Vista), and all of the maintenance tools with Onecare are pretty much already possible with tools built into Windows, but MS's anti-virus software is not freely available, and the Onecare bundle is an attempt to make all of the tools a bit simpler and more straightforward.

Myself, I've been using Onecare for a few months now after having used Norton products for several years. I'm pleased with Onecare and will likely continue to use it under my Windows install. I can't say just how good its protection is, being a Smart Internet User, I very very rarely come across anything that requires protection. But from what I can see Onecare is nice, and I do like handling a number system maintenance issues in one place.

Re:Irony! (1)

222 (551054) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362978)

Unless an out of court settlement prohibits Microsoft from bundling its upcoming antispyware / antivirus software?

Re:Irony! (1)

ad0gg (594412) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363006)

Thats funny because symantec started off with a virus detection program called SAM on the macintosh platform back in 91, it wasn't till they aquired Central point and Norton in 1994 did they started producing a virus program for the PC. Then apple's marketshare dwindled and sam was pulled in mid 90's. Those were the days. Though with the intel chips maybe we'll see apple hitting the 12% marketshare again.

Re:Irony! (3, Informative)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363178)

My understanding is that the first virus ever in the wild was for apple computers.

This is an interesting timeline [infoplease.com] It lacks some details but gives an idea of importance virus played in history.

Re:Irony! (5, Insightful)

Crazyscottie (947072) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363014)

Of course Symantec horse is biting the hand of the man that feeds it, but only because the horse knows that very soon (after a few more delays, I should say) the man won't need that horse anymore! This could be a lawsuit intended to delay the shipping of Vista.

More delays = Longer time until Microsoft's bundled security = More Symantec products sold

You get the picture.

Re:Irony! (2, Informative)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363205)

Nah, it isn't about selling more symantec products. It is about making sure they get money from microsoft products being sold because they contain symantec ideas.

Microsoft is the one that realy bit the hand. They attained an antivirus company and talked about giving it away with Vista. I'm not sure if thats still the idea but it would signal symantec that netscape syndrome could be happening there. Now if symantec can make Vista expensive enough because of licensing fees, they will generate the same amount of profit for each vista sale as they would for nortan antivirus sales. It is a win win situation for symantec because even if they lose the delay, they will still be able to profit from the code in Vista as well as drive the price up wich could make it almost too expensive for people to adopt willingly.

Now this poses big problems for microsoft who has big plans on thier DRM sales tied directly into Vista as well as other programs. I guess alot of thier Vista or windows XPsp2 only software might start getting a port back if it goes this way.

Re:Irony! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363079)

"how many of us linux users..."

Hey, what makes you think I'm using linux??

If I had to bet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363236)

..I would wager that the bulk of slashdotters fall into the "all or most of the above" camp when it comes to using various operating systems. The demographics here probably (directly) use at least two if not more than two operating systems on a daily basis. It's really a SWAG but I bet I am right, a possible example, guy running linux or solaris or a BSD server(s) at work, palm OS maybe on a PDA, a mac OSX laptop, a dual boot desktop at home with linux and XP or 2000, a media server running linux, etc.

Re:Irony! (0, Troll)

glitch23 (557124) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363141)

Think about it, how many of us linux users are regularly downloading a virus cleaning program?

WHen there is a Linux version finally available I'll download it but they seem to only be available for Windows, as usual.

Re:Irony! (2, Informative)

saleenS281 (859657) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363285)

Funny, Symantec/Veritas Foundation Suite is deployed on at least one server in just about every major corporation in the world, and it's mainly aimed at *nix servers that are running FC. Turns out they are in fact making money off more than just MS, who'd a thunk?

If I had a dollar for every RHEL/Oracle/Veritas DMP setup I had to troubleshoot I could've retired already and I've only been doing it for a year...

quite a case they got.. (2, Insightful)

xWastedMindx (636296) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362810)

"Symantec alleges that "Microsoft has deliberately and surreptitiously misappropriated Symantec's valuable data-storage technologies, misled and thereby convinced the United States government to issue patents to Microsoft based on technologies invented by Symantec, attempted unsuccessfully to persuade Symantec to forgive Microsoft' s misdeeds under the guise of expanding a business relationship, and ultimately built portions of its next generation operating system on this house of cards."

2 words. holy shit.

When are they gonna learn?

Re:quite a case they got.. (1)

eonlabs (921625) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363034)

Who? Symantec, that Microsoft has the full intent of taking over the world through any means necessary? Or Microsoft, That the world doesn't usually tolerate this crap for long... I don't know. Would be interesting to see how this pans out.

In other news... (4, Funny)

creepynut (933825) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362813)

Microsoft announces another edition of Windows Vista; Windows Vista Forever.

In celebration of it's release, ID Software and Microsoft are teaming up to release Duke Nukem Forever on the same day!

Re:In other news... (5, Interesting)

SpectreHiro (961765) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362878)

In celebration of it's release, ID Software and Microsoft are teaming up to release Duke Nukem Forever on the same day!

3DRealms, not id. Way to botch a lame joke.

Re:In other news... (3, Funny)

datafr0g (831498) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362906)

Microsoft announces another edition of Windows Vista; Windows Vista Forever. In celebration of it's release, ID Software and Microsoft are teaming up to release Duke Nukem Forever on the same day!

Funny that DNF has taken so long, people have forgotten who the developer is!
I wonder if in five years, we'll forget who owned the Vista project and start blaming Linus!

heh, on second thought, maybe we will!

;-)

Re:In other news... (1)

svip (678490) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362909)

At least you got the Windows developer right...

ID software??? (1)

Wooky_linuxer (685371) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362948)

Unless you have some weird way of thinking that id would somehow buy Duke Nukem Forever and finish it, I guess you were talking about 3DRealms. Ok, it has been so long since they last published a game you no longer know their name.

Re:ID software??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363238)

OT,

Dude, I love that sig.

Translation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15362815)

Attention Symantec customers: Find other suppliers now.

Attention Symantec employees: Start looking for a new job.

I'm sure this has nothing to do with... (-1, Troll)

tkrotchko (124118) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362822)

I'm sure Symantec isn't trying to raise cash to cover this (http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/04/18/15322 56&from=rss) little problem...

Re:I'm sure this has nothing to do with... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363010)

learn2link n00b

Well... (2, Funny)

liangzai (837960) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362832)

This is clearly an instance of "democracy with American characteristics", involving lawyers to get somewhere.

Anyway, M$ can't afford to stall the launch any further, which means the users will have to pay for Symantec's share.

Hell, M$ might even start thinking more about security just to piss off Symantec. Or maybe put them out of business entirely, because they live like a parasite on M$.

Re:M$ .... start thinking more about security (2, Interesting)

symbolset (646467) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363056)

You are missing the point that if they could do security, they would. They're not making horrid software on purpose -- this really is the best they can do. It's sad, really. There are ten new viruses a day. Millions of zombie bots wreak havoc on the internet. Botmaster spamkings brazenly demand ransom and shut down opponents with traffic storms. Absolutely no other OS from any source provides a fertile ground for this menace to grow. The only possible cure for this absurdity would be to ban Microsoft products entirely.

If Microsoft products were not so easily exploited (or were banned from the 'net), the Internet would be a much more pleasant place for the common person.

So no, they're not able to make secure software for the purpose of putting Symantec out of business. If I had points today I would have modded you funny.

Whenever they ship XP SP3 (Vista) it will have inadequate security. The first security hole in IE is going to be a raging vector for spyware because the default firewall config doesn't block outbound connections. Naturally if spyware doesn't have to overcome a firewall to deliver its reports that's helpful to whom?

I'm in the trade, so dealing with this stuff is my bread and butter -- I've installed more of their product than anybody I know, but really this is truly pathetic. It saddens me to know that my fellow humans reason so poorly as to keep this vendor a monopoly.

Re:Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363069)

You're not very bright, are you?

Re:Well... So, humm Symantec, how much u want? (1)

davidsyes (765062) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363240)

(Twiddling fingers like Dr. EVIL)... FIFTY-FIVE ***BEELYUN*** DOLLARS!

(Picking themselves up from floor, ms lies again and chortles) THAT KIND OF MONEY DOESN'T EVEN EXIST!

Meh (-1, Troll)

7of7 (956694) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362840)

I think Symantec is afraid that their entire security business is possibly going to go away because even morons will no longer have an excuse to have viruses or spyware. It's either that or Symantec is just in the business of filing frivolous lawsuits now instead of trying to invent new things.

Re:Meh (0, Flamebait)

samkass (174571) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362905)

frivolous lawsuits

Ahhh, yes, I almost forgot that in Slashdotland all patent lawsuits are, by definition, frivolous.

Re:Meh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363163)

You need to read TFA. Has nothing to do with security software. Think Volume Management.

I hope it's granted. (-1, Flamebait)

rice_burners_suck (243660) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362851)

I hope the injunction is granted.

And please understand that my desire is not out of love for Symantec. I hate Symantec. It is a defective company. It's just that I hate Microsoft a million billion trillion times more, and I would like to see Vista delayed for as long as possible, to allow the following to take place:

  • Free software will have yet more time available to catch up in areas that Microsoft controls, and to exceed the quality of Microsoft software, both in features and stability
  • Apple will have more time to improve Mac OS X, so that all the Microsoft, even with all its "me too" features that were copied from Apple, will be even farther behind Apple by the time the suit is over.
Microsloth. Where do you want to crash and have data loss and blue screens of death and viruses and spam and spyware and malware and bloat and bugs and other headaches that you won't have with Linux or Mac OS X today?

Re:I hope it's granted. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15362869)

Interesting. So you hate Microsoft because it is unreliable and has bad quality and dont want MSFT to ship Vista...so that Linux can catch up in terms of reliability and quality.

Very interesting indeed

Re:Hypocrisy (2, Insightful)

Herby Sagues (925683) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363063)

Even more: You hate microsoft because you think they develop shitty software, but you want them to keep it that way and not to improve their products.

DRM + Anti-piracy = improving? (1)

MarkByers (770551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363239)

You hate microsoft because you think they develop shitty software, but you want them to keep it that way and not to improve their products.

If you call adding DRM and further anti-piracy measures "improving", then I hope that they will be "improving" their products, even if it does mean a few more delays.

Re:I hope it's granted. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363119)

Are you literate?

Hmmm... (4, Funny)

rushmeat (972949) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362852)

*Microsoft Board Room Exec's Shit guys, the date is coming closer and closer, and we have NOTHING. What the HELL are we going to do? *Board members think for a while* Hey, I have an idea! Let's get Symantec to sue us for something stupid, and create an injunction that stops our product from coming out, so that we don't have to delay it again, and can use someone as a scapegoat! ... Excelent idea! Give this man a promotion, a Ferrari, and hell, tell the programmers to take the week off!

Re:Hmmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363148)

I think this is the most likely scenario. Symantec look like the aggrieved party, and get a wadge of cash as a 'settlement' and Microsoft get to delay a product that from all accounts still needs a few rough edges knocked off. If they were English they'd buy the guy a knighthood. Maybe they will anyway...

if I were a technology company (4, Insightful)

yagu (721525) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362854)

Semantec and its technology is annoying. Microsoft and its technology is annoying. Both have insidious business tactics (lifetime subscription, or die?).

I have a hard time picking which of these two companies is telling the truth here. Okay, it's slashdot, I'll align (reluctantly) with Semantec. A paragraph from an article:

"These claims are unfounded because Microsoft actually purchased intellectual property rights for all elevant technologies from Veritas in 2004," the company said.

The courts will have to arbitrate, but I wonder that Microsoft went into that contract under a huge smoke screen, all smarmy and friendly -- Semantec probably thought they were getting a backstage pass, a partnership to be the virus, etc., technology provider with Microsoft for the long anticipated Vista.

Vista: (from definition 2., Merriam Webster): an extensive mental view (as over a stretch of time or a series of events)

Semantec probably saw themselves in some kind of mindshare with Microsoft. Not much of a "vista" now? Frankly, when you look at the scattered remains of former companies at the hands of Microsoft it seems a wonder any company would enter into partnerships with them (Citrix, Stacker (is that what it was called?, etc.).

If I were a technology company, I'd only take one of two paths: I'd either formulate a strategy such that when my products are mature and interesting enough to Microsoft, I'd sell the technology and company outright (hello Visio), or I'd absolutely refuse to work with them at all. Anything in between seems to be a kiss of betrayal.

Of course a company always has to consider the heavy price that might be paid by not cooperating at all with Microsoft. Remember Netscape? And Microsoft has demonstrated the price to pay for that kind of bullying ("Janet Reno can go to Hell.") is one they're willing to absorb.

Well, a rambling post, but no solution to the Microsoft juggernaut. Hang in there Google!

Re:if I were a technology company (1, Redundant)

Fulcrum of Evil (560260) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362933)

Semantec probably saw themselves in some kind of mindshare with Microsoft. Not much of a "vista" now? Frankly, when you look at the scattered remains of former companies at the hands of Microsoft it seems a wonder any company would enter into partnerships with them (Citrix, Stacker (is that what it was called?, etc.).

What astounds me is that anyone still partners with MS. They eat everybody that gets in bed with them.

selling the company often won't work (1)

r00t (33219) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363128)

Microsoft just steals all the employees.

Example: compiler vendors

Re:if I were a technology company (1)

rumcho (921428) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363204)

what does Google have to do with all that?

Summary is wrong (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15362856)

The lawsuit has nothing to do with patent infringement.

Instead, Symantec is alleging that Microsoft stole trade secrets from them (this is the contractual violation part) incorporated them into Vista (hence the petition for injunction).

Patents come into the picture because Symantec is also alleging the Microsoft filed for patents on this technology, claiming to have invented it itself.

Re:Summary is wrong (5, Informative)

chef_raekwon (411401) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363147)

nicely put. I have read all the comments to this point, and no one seems to get the picture (except ofcourse, for this AC).

Symantec is putting forth this lawsuit because it now owns Veritas. Veritas is the best volume management software available. It is light years ahead of any competition -- and if Microsoft steals these 'trade secrets', they have every right to go after them in court. I don't think we are seeing another SCO trying to slow the inevitable death...or a company trying to pimp its virus protection.

Re:Summary is wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363319)

Oh no, Microsoft would never ... Uh, never mind...

Re:Summary is wrong (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363331)

The lawsuit has nothing to do with patent infringement.

Instead,Symantec is alleging that Microsoft stole trade secrets from them (this is the contractual violation part) incorporated them into Vista (hence the petition for injunction).

Given the sparse information in the article, it appears that you are correct in that it is not a patent issue, It is, apparently, also not a trade secret issue.

It is a contract (licensing) issue, and revolves around the terms of what is and what is not allowed under the terms of the contract.

Injunctive relief to stop the incorporation of the technology can only be sought at this time because Vista is not "released." Once Vista is publicly released, look for an amended Complaint seeking monetary damages also.

stepping on toes (1)

networkzombie (921324) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362864)

Symantec knows Microsoft will soon release an antivirus package. The XP firewall has already cut into the Symantec bottom line. Symantec needs to start grabing for cash while they can. This is a golden moment to get cash so their shitty R&D can come up with some Norton snake oil.

Not so fast on that injunction... (3, Interesting)

xkr (786629) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362896)

Symantec (plantiff) can only get an injunction, in the best of circumstances, AFTER MS has been determined by a trial court to be infringing. An average patent case now costs $13 million in legal expenses and takes 7 years. Then, assume about two more years for the injunction.

The recent Supreme Court decision has (almost) put an end to injunctions. Since the damages in patent cases are restricted to "actual" (meaning lost business profit) damages, it is hardly worth the bother.

Expect to see patent holders pretty much ignored by all large companies, from now on.

Re:Not so fast on that injunction... (2, Interesting)

pallmall1 (882819) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363294)

Since the damages in patent cases are restricted to "actual" (meaning lost business profit) damages, it is hardly worth the bother.

Damages could be based on a projected loss of existing market share suffered by Symantec as a result of a competing, infringing product. The Supreme Court did NOT rule against injunctions (which can be imposed prior to the outcome of a trial). The Supreme Court ruled only that damages must be considered in the decision to grant an injunction. The decision makes it harder for intellectual property holding companies (i.e. "patent trolls") that produce nothing and generate no revenue from anything other than litigation settlements to be granted injunctions against existing companies.

I can see it now. (5, Funny)

Aj (608) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362998)

23 May 2006.

Microsoft released its latest patch set today for all versions of it's Windows Operating systems.

24 May 2006.

Symantec Products Failing en-mass.

Reports are coming in from all over the world today that Symantecs software is failing on all versions of windows, Symantec cannot explain it, and microsoft are not commenting.

sigh...

Re:I can see it now. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363106)

This is not news, symantec products have been failing on all known systems for years. Symantec is about as reliable and bug free as your average piece of spyware crap.

Mod Parent Up (1)

insane_machine (952012) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363137)

Haven't had a good laugh in a while. Funny thing is, I can actually see that happening

Submarines (1)

Spiked_Three (626260) | more than 8 years ago | (#15362999)

This is a perfect example of where submarines are used and why companies have to have them to do business.

It will take Microsoft all of 5 seconds to identify patents that Symantec is violating and force them to cross license. It's a waste of tax payer money (use of the courts) and a stupid desperate move on symantecs part.

Re:Submarines (1)

rumcho (921428) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363218)

Hmmm, companies pay court expenses - not tax payers.

Britney Spears Plans Second Baby (4, Funny)

oskard (715652) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363011)

, May Delay Vista

Not sure if it was mentioned yet (1)

TEEPS (733966) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363021)

Symantec did not PRODUCE/CREATE the software patent in question - it was aquired by Veritas! Not trying to split hairs, but that is the whole truth. Bill

Re:Not sure if it was mentioned yet (1)

TEEPS (733966) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363095)

oops - sorry - it was AQUIRED from VERITAS... not by VERITAS... my bad

I disagree.... (2, Interesting)

ShyGuy91284 (701108) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363040)

"If it is granted, expect MS to settle to prevent another Vista delay." Or, if they find yet another reason they should work more on Vista, expect them not to settle to cover their butts much like a certain company once did due to source code theft (A company and game I happen to have the greatest respect for).

Come on, guys! It has NOTHING to do with viruses! (5, Informative)

WidescreenFreak (830043) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363041)

Holy sh*t! All of the comments in this thread about Symantec being worried about Microsoft's anti-virus product!

You apparently have forgotten that Symantec now owns Veritas -- you know, the company that had probably the most-used volume management software out there? Need I remind you that Veritas Volume Manager has been a part of Windows for many years? Windows 2000 even had VxVM incorporated into it. When you have a 2000 or XP disk that is configured as "dynamic" instead of "basic", you're looking at a Veritas Volume Manager disk, not a straight NTFS/FAT32 disk.

Even the article itself (emphases mine) says:

Microsoft said in a statement that the suit "stems from a very narrow disagreement" over terms of a contract with Veritas to license volume management technology, which allows operating systems to handle large amounts of data.

Apparently, Symantec either thinks that Microsoft has misappropriated the technology that they use in Veritas Volume Manager and incorporated it into Vista without giving Symantec that they want or they're using this as an excuse for a money grab. Either way, this has nothing to do with Microsoft's anti-virus product.

Volume Management??? (3, Funny)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363053)

Does this mean that Windows will finally have a real volume manager? Oh the humanity! Are we finally done with primary and extended partitions, and dynamic volumes, and all that crap? Can we just do something as elegant as "vgextend vg00 /dev/sda2" or similar ARC path crap?

Holy cow, maybe Vista WONT suck.

Ignore that man behind the curtain! (1)

craXORjack (726120) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363064)

If it is granted, expect MS to settle to prevent another Vista delay.

But only after the delay because it would be all Symantec's fault, every bit of it, nothing whatever to do with slipping schedules.

So says Oz the great and terrible.

Yay! Volume manager! (5, Funny)

TheDormouse (614641) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363075)

So all my MP3's will play around the same volume with me having to fiddle with the speaker controls! Yessss!




Oh, wait. Nevermind.

Just in the nick of time... (1)

Warlock7 (531656) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363076)

Whew!!! Thanks for small favors. Now that Symantec is suing Microsoft, they're able to use the lawsuit as an excuse for delaying the launch of VISTA for a few more months.

How much cash is Billy going to "settle" for so that they can hold back the launch of the biggest piece of vapor in history?

A terrible sound I hear (0)

The Bungi (221687) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363101)

As if a million heads had cried out in utter confusion and then exploded.

Re:A terrible sound I hear (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363159)

Yes, what you heard was the result of Dr. Ruth explaining sex to a crowd of 40 year olds at a Star Trek convention.

No, not really. (3, Informative)

Telastyn (206146) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363180)

Microsoft is in a position to place antivirus/spyware apps into their OS. Symantec makes ~50% of all revenue from NAV. This lawsuit isn't much more than corporate blackmail. Microsoft agrees to not bundle their AV, or otherwise completely screw NAV, and Symantec agrees not to tie up Vista in court.

The Meeting... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15363207)

MS: "Ok, how much will it take to make you go away?"

SYM: (in DR EVIL vioce) "ONE BILLION DOLLARS!"

MS: "a billion?!"

SYM: "Well, ya see, we gotta pay out taxes..."

it's not (0, Offtopic)

TheDreadSlashdotterD (966361) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363252)

It's not a delay. It's a feature.

So, what's next? (1, Funny)

epp_b (944299) | more than 8 years ago | (#15363325)

"Car careens off road to miss roadkill and causes Vista delay" "Vista release postponed due to high rainfall in the Amazon" "Tazmanian fruitbat goes extinct - could cause late release of Vista." ...
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