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CmdrTaco posted more than 11 years ago | from the battle-has-yet-to-begin dept.

The Courts 655

the jackol writes "As expected, the OSI's just given the SCO vs IBM case a bite with this position paper. "SCO has never owned the UNIX trademark. IBM neither requested nor required SCO's permission to call their AIX offering a Unix. That decision lies not with the accidental owner of the historical Bell Labs source code, but with the Open Group.""

cancel ×


Wow (5, Funny)

gazbo (517111) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997695)

OSI is ISO backwards. Conspiracy.

Re:Wow (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997768)

When I first read the headline, I thought of the ISO OSI network model. Then I clicked on the link to find out it's about Open Source Initiative, not Open Systems Interconnect.

Re:Wow (5, Funny) (562495) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997849)

no it is just backward compliance :)

If this is not the first post... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997696)

...I will gouge out my eyes and feed them to crabs.

As always, links to pictures will be posted.

Re:If this is not the first post... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997758)

OK, let's see those links to naked eyeballs then.

RAVA YUUUUUUUUU (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997701)

rong time!

Wait a minute... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997706)

Someone actually used AIX?!

Re:Wait a minute... (-1, Flamebait)

FutureShoks (571976) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997717)

Once again postings like this prove that Slashdot is full of CS graduates and home "experts" who wouldn't know true corporate computing environments if they slapped them in the face. Of course people use AIX.

No (-1, Offtopic)

emo boy (586277) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997721)

it said know to kill with.

Re:Wait a minute... (1, Funny)

anarxia (651289) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997723)

No, IBM always bundled Windows with their mainframes.

Re:Wait a minute... (0)

lucifuge31337 (529072) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997733)

Another idiot. Mainframes don't run AIX.

Re:Wait a minute... (1, Flamebait)

BJH (11355) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997737)

I know you're being sarcastic, and I think your parent is an ignorant fool too, but as it happens, IBM doesn't bundle AIX with its mainframes either.

Re:Wait a minute... (1)

FutureShoks (571976) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997752)

I rest my case ;)

Re:Wait a minute... (1)

Rick.C (626083) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997871)

That was a +n Funny. Please mod accordingly.

Actually, IBM mainframes ship with an HMC (Hardware Maintenance Console) which is an IBM 300PL PC with a DVD-RAM drive. It runs OS/2.

Go figure.

Re:Wait a minute... (1)

t-wata (601574) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997773)

Yes,number of AIX users are much more than UnixWare user(s).

Re:Wait a minute... (1)

mr_z_beeblebrox (591077) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997902)

Someone actually used AIX?!

Doesn't everyone?!?
I have a 33 MhZ RS6000 (with 16MB of memory) running DNS on my home network. Ok, I know it's not mainstream but it's just so cool!

Rocketman, as interpreted by William Shatner (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997709)

Good morning. In 1972, when Elton John and I wrote Rocketman, it became very popular among the listeners. Due to the interest and the meaning of the song, now, in 2003, I am truly proud, once again, to present my Rocketman, as interpreted by William Shatner. Thank you.

Truly an American icon []

Re:Rocketman, as interpreted by William Shatner (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997730)

Could you please troll in an open format such as Ogg?

Real for Linux sucks balls.

Ogg Vorbis .... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997832)

Ogg is vorbising for you bitch!

As an attorney... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997724)

As an attorney, I am of the opinion that IBM should either just settle with SCO or buy them.

I'm done some pretty extensive legal research on this case, and SCO has a damn strong case.

If IBM fails to settle, then I fear for Linux. I predict that if IBM fails to settle, then every single corporation using Linux will be making payments to SCO.

In my opinion, this is a pretty compelling reason to stick with Microsoft for both the server and desktop. It'll cost less in the long run.

Just my legal opinion, though.

Re:As an attorney... (2, Insightful)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997757)

Can we get some legal certified toilet paper? Cause now days, you need an attorney just to wipe your own ass. To bad the slashdot crowd can't just pool togeather some money to kick SCO out of existance. I can dream can't I?

Re:As an attorney... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997797)

Uhm, hate to break this to you Linux fanboys, but I am also an attorney, and I have also researched this case pretty extensively.

The parent is absolutely correct. IBM needs to either (1) buy SCO or (2) settle out of court.

IBM doesn't have a legal leg to stand on...

Re:As an attorney... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997824)

linux fanboys are too busy sucking each other's gay cocks to be bothered by anything else.

Re:As an attorney... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997808)

I agree with your brilliant post.

Re:As an attorney... (1)

gunne (14408) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997864)

Good troll there, mr. anonymous...
Now go play somewhere else.

Re:As an attorney... (2, Funny)

KingRamsis (595828) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997934)

I beg to differ as a corporate lawyer specialized in IP laws I think you mom sucks real hard.

now mr.trollboy go play somewhere else.

GPL the best bet (4, Interesting)

deanj (519759) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997727)

The best bet for this whole thing is that SCO did their own Linux and released it. Since they did it under GPL, the cat's out of the bag. ...At least from this point on...or rather, the point they released it on. They've pulled their Linux since then.

Question is, can they sue for release of software BEFORE they released the now GPL-ed SCO code in their Linux distro?

Re:GPL the best bet (3, Interesting)

sparkes (125299) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997790)

couple of points.

1). Did Caldera own the code in question when they where in the distro market?

2). I don't think the licence on a linux distro is a boilerplate thing. I am not sure that a SCO distribution with a GPL kernel containing the code would sanction the use of said code unless their copyright was on the kernel code in question.

The kernel is released under a boiler plate licence with a Linus copyright and contains code with other copyright messages also covered by the GPL.

Unless SCO modified the kernel and added their licence to the code above the Linus one (making the kernel in thier release a fork of the linux code) would just bundling the code with other software in a distribution authorise the re-licensing of their code?


Re:GPL the best bet (4, Informative)

brlewis (214632) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997799)

I like the GPL, but please note that BSD or any other free-software license would have the same result in this case. Any license they grant to the public precludes trade secret violation, and copyright violation is limited to breach of the license.

Re:GPL the best bet (1)

dirk (87083) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997847)

Yes, they can sue for anything before they released their GPLed version of Linux (and possibly afterward if the court finds that they did not have knowledge they were distributing their IP in the kernel, which would invalidate the GPL release). Just because they later released it under another license does not validate the unauthorized use of their IP in earlier instances (if their IP was actually used). Also, it would not authorize the use of their IP unless it is a direct descendent from their distro. The only way to leagally use the code (again, if the courts don't invalidate their GPL release of it) is to take it directly from their distro. Technically speaking, you couldn't take the same code from an earlier distro by someone else, because they did not have the rights to release it under the GPL at that time. Of course proving you got it from a distro that was not theirs will be hard if not impossible (unless your release predates their release). And, of course, IANAL.

There can be only one OSI. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997728)

OSI Made Ultima, not Unix.

all your unices are mine! (4, Funny)

sparkes (125299) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997731)

"Thus, the community of Unix hackers that had grown up around the pre-commercial releases never lost the conviction that, ethically, the Unix code belonged to them -- the people who had the ideas and wrote the code -- regardless of what the legal paperwork said."

As the torch bearers of these hackers I claim ethical ownership of Unix for the Linux and BSD communities ;-)


Please don't take SCO seriously! (4, Interesting)

rseuhs (322520) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997740)

Let's review what SCO is claiming.

OK, we start in 1998 or so before IBM even touched Linux. Linux already was shown to run on 24 CPUs, something SCO still can't do in 2003. In other areas (journalizing FS, NUMA, LVM) SCO Unix is completely lacking.

So SCO thinks that IBM is taking some code out of their SCO Unix - which can do absolutely nothing Linux cannot do even at that time - and submits it to the kernel mailing list. Of course IBM engineers are not allowed to do that, but SCO thinks they did it anyway because - well who knows why. Even though that codes does not introduce a feature or improvement, it mysteriously gets accepted and becomes part of the kernel.

Even though SCO Unix is hopelessly outdated and lacking enterprize features, SCO believes that without that mysteric code above being in Linux, they would have had 1 billion more in sales.

Nevertheless SCO somehow doesn't realize their drop in sales. They continue to distribute Linux. Despite being a Linux distributor, they don't realize how their precious code was included in the kernel. Everything is going on normally - for years. They even provide Linux developers with hardware to do SMP development.

Then, all of the sudden, in May 2003, SCO realizes 1 billion dollars lost in sales and some mysterical code outside the kernel in some mysterical part of the OS. SCO also has so far not realized that Linux was ready for the enterprize, so they accuse IBM that without their code, Linux would be unusuable in a business. - All of the sudden they seem to have forgotten that they themselves have pushed Linux as a business OS for years. Then, also suddently, they realize that that mysterical code is in the kernel, not outside like they stated before.

Then, after they have made numerous threats against IBM, SuSE, RedHat and also against all Linux users, but before they have to pay any legal fees, they are lucky that Microsoft buys a license from them. What a coincidence! Without that cash they certainly wouldn't survive the legal battle with IBM (They lost 1 billion in sales, remember?)

A bit surprised, IBM, SuSE, RedHat, the whole Linux community, numerous newspapers and their own users ask SCO for clarification, but they decline because - well just because.


I can guarantee you one thing for sure: This case is so ridiculous and flawed in so many respects, that absolutely nobody should be afraid or uncertain about Linux' legality.

Re:Please don't take SCO seriously! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997750)

Well, I agree with you and everything, but I feel compelled to point out that 'mysterical' is not a word in English.

Re:Please don't take SCO seriously! (2, Funny)

bwalling (195998) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997756)


Root words are mystery and hysterical?

Re:Please don't take SCO seriously! (1)

lowmagnet (646428) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997806)

You missed mysteric earlier.

Re:Please don't take SCO seriously! (1)

bwalling (195998) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997966)

No, I caught it, but mysterical better fit my comment.

Re:Please don't take SCO seriously! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997789)

I believe the word you're searching for is mysterious

Re:Please don't take SCO seriously! (5, Insightful)

Carewolf (581105) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997796)

Unfortunately you have to take people who sue you seriously, otherwise you lose.

Although I think they should be held in contemp of court for frivolous lawsuit.

Re:Please don't take SCO seriously! (5, Funny)

Daniel Boisvert (143499) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997817)

Well, maybe the lost sales occurred because the IBM engineers used cut and paste instead of copy and paste. That would also explain why UnixWare seems to be missing all of these enterprise-grade features everybody's talking about... =P

Re:Please don't take SCO seriously! (2, Funny)

91degrees (207121) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997825)

That is a fantastic summary.

To think, I wasted 10 minutes reading OSI's full document.

Actually (1)

3.5 stripes (578410) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997874)

They claim they own the IP of any Unix licensed ( which IBM is supposed to have done), when I read their info in the site, it specifically said any development done on commercial unixes (AIX in this case) belong to them (cuz the license says so..).

They're saying IBM gave this IP (maybe even code) to the linux developers, which IBM can't do under the license.

This is what the claim is, not that anyone stole something out of their shitty Unix.

Re:Please don't take SCO seriously! (1)

walterbyrd (182728) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997915)

Excellent summary. But, I think you missed the point of the law suit. This suit isn't supposed to be won. It is a nuisence suit. It is supposed to spread FUD for MS's benefit, and maybe it's supposed prompt IBM into buying SCO.

Re:Please don't take SCO seriously! (5, Insightful)

jkrise (535370) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997943)

"I can guarantee you one thing for sure: This case is so ridiculous and flawed in so many respects, that absolutely nobody should be afraid or uncertain about Linux' legality."

I enjoyed your well-constructed post up and until this last bit. This sounds as re-assuring as, well, Mr. Mohammed Saeed al Sahaf, the IIM.

Also, I think /. should ban all SCO articles and posts for about a month, or until SCO shows up the 'poisoned code' whichever is earleir. I think a SCO article or two a day is just too much. The Open Source community in general, and Slashdot community in particular, need to demonstrate their confidence that this case is bogus, and sponsored by Microsoft.

Talking of MS, I wonder why they should begin licensing SCO IP now. I mean, are they planning to use Unix code in Longhorn or something? If they've already used SCO IP without a license, we need to expose these thieves. And what does Services for Unix have to with SCO IP? I u'stand SFU is about NFS, Automount etc. and I believe Sun, and not SCO, holds the IP for these products.

The mandatory dupe troll (0, Offtopic)

boer (653809) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997745)

Look's like this was mentioned in an earlier story: 3&mode=thread&tid=109&tid=190&tid=185&tid=130&tid= 187

reminds me of a story (-1, Troll)

Jerk City Troll (661616) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997747)

We had this developer that used to piss off everyone at the office. So one night I went to his workstation, removed Linux and installed Windows. Then I pissed all over his chair. After that I wanked off into his coffee mug just for good measure.

Still, I felt like the job wasn't done, so I pulled down my britches and dropped a load right on his keyboard. Then I grabbed his sweater off the back of his chair and used it to wipe my arse.

You should've seen his face the next day when he came into work and saw the whole mess. He was like, "Ugh, gross! Someone installed Windows on my workstation!"

Needless to say, he didn't fuck with anyone at the office after that.

Re:reminds me of a story (1)

emo boy (586277) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997759)

Reminds me of this guy who keeps posting the same story over and over aga... oh did that say mandatory troll? Sorry go ahead.

This is whats known asa confirming instance (4, Interesting)

Crashmarik (635988) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997748)

This is one more confirming piece of data of the following Hypothesis.

1. SCO is a company that doesn't even understand its own products

2. SCO's Lawsuit is the desperate last gasp of a company going down the tubes.

3. The SCO management team appears to be desperate enough and with such a complete lack of morals that they will lay claim to anything around them, without regard to morality or ethics.

If the SCO people are the best that Microsoft can get to help in their war on Open Source then this will likely backfire due to the disgust with the nature of the people involved.

So? (0, Troll)

ezberry (411384) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997749)

If I recall correctly, this case is not about AIX using the Unix trademark or asking to be called Unix. Rather, it's about IBM taking proprietary source code, the rights to which SCO owns, and illegally using them in Linux. This has nothing to do with whoever IBM initially used to get the code or anything. If I steal a piece of code from some company and they're sold to another company, that new company is fully allowed to sue me. In short, I don't really get the point of the summary. Also, no, I didn't read the article.

Re:So? (1)

Fembot (442827) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997811)

Yes but SCO bascialy said to IBM "Choose linux or AIX", but now it appears they dont need SCO's permission to call AIX UNIX so it doesnt matter

Re:So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997856)

read sco's complaint.

Re:So? (5, Funny)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997947)

Also, no, I didn't read the article.

This explains alot... are you in management?

Re:So? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997956)

Well, you should read the article. In short:

1. SCO says, that IBM used SCO's proprietaty code to improve Linux and without SCO's expertise Linux wouldn't have such features.

2. SCO offering don't have such features.

3. So, how it is possible, that "stolen code" used in Linux has features, that Unixware and SCO OpenServer don't have?

Saw this on Google News a while back (4, Insightful)

lingqi (577227) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997755)

and I really like the title of this one: OSI Tears Apart SCO's Claims []

Anyway - on a related note: this is why IBM will not buy SCO. As much as people daydream that IBM is "on our side" and all that, there seem to be all too many who conveniently forgets that IBM is in it for the money, not because they have some kind of conviction that OSI is morally good, or something - it's only good because it's making them money.

Buying SCO, even if it temporarily puts this behind them, makes OSI completely unworkable by IBM - beacuse this would set a precedence of sketchy IP companies suddenly realizing that IBM will actually pay CASH for bullshit patents and stuff. As much cash as IBM have, they can't be buying every bullshit patent touting company out there - at least not doing so while making a buck.

so, if SCO fucks linux over, IBM will just find another route to makey money, and if linux stands, IBM will continue to stand my its side. Regardless, though - don't expect IBM to chump out the change for SCO, though i do think they will push a few lawyers for the good cause, because getting a few lawyers and bust SCO's bs out of the water and keep linux standing will, in the end, mean the best bottom line for its business.

look at the world with an economic eye, guys.

Re:Saw this on Google News a while back (1)

crumley (12964) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997899)

Yeah, this was on slashdot [] a while ago too.

More likely IBM fucks SCO over (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997913)

If, as you say, IBM is making money off OSS (and they probably are), IBM should rip SCO open and fuck 'em with a telephone pole - an old telephone pole with lots of splinters. Just to set an example.

Thus, no company will attack OSS IP in the future, and the M$ proxy server SCO has an all-too-appropriate permanent BSOD.

We can only hope.

OSI Papers notwithstanding... (5, Funny)

BJZQ8 (644168) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997762)

OSI Papers notwithstanding, all it takes is a tipply judge to cause a lot of headaches for everyone from RedHat to Yellow Dog. In any case, Microsoft wins. Their line...go with the smart, non-litigated choice...Windows XP. Now with Software Assurance!

So... (5, Insightful)

Noryungi (70322) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997764)

Frankly, I am getting sick and tired of this whole SCO hoopla. The facts of the case can be summed up as follows:

  • SCO is dying (and no, this is not a joke).
  • Even if Linux was to suffer from this ridiculous law suit, there is always [Free|Net|Open]BSD, systems that certainly do not include any code from SCO (otherwise, they would be named).

So, not matter what happens, open source will survive. GNU/Linux may suffer, but not other systems.

The SCO law suit will probably go down in history in the same category as the stupid congressmen that bad-mouth the GPL. Namely, the trashcan.

Re:So... (2, Funny)

femto (459605) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997917)

> Even if Linux was to suffer from this ridiculous law suit, there is always [Free|Net|Open]BSD

And if all else fails, there is always the HURD [] ... :-) (seriously!)

Re:So... (5, Insightful)

Greger47 (516305) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997930)

Even if Linux was to suffer from this ridiculous law suit, there is always [Free|Net|Open]BSD, systems that certainly do not include any code from SCO (otherwise, they would be named).

I'm picking your comment at random from all the theres-no-problem-we-still-have-*BSD touters out there.

There is NOTHING, I repeat NOTHING that prevents this mess from happening to the *BSDs aswell. Some oh-so-secret IP from random-ligitator-company may just as easily end up in any project with an open development model.

Yes, the *BSDs where clensed in the beginning of the 90ies from the old AT&T sorucecode license ghost, but this deal is about supposedly *new* IP developed by SCO.

Re:So... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997973)

Um... the majority of the code in a "Linux" distribution is the GNU portion of GNU/Linux. And Linux, the kernel, is GPL-d.

I believe, judging from SCO posting some inflammatory comments, from their perspective, by Stallman and Perens on their web site, that this is another orchestrated attack on the GPL. When MS tried that before, it didn't work for them. So now, SCO is doing it for them, from all the evidence we can see. They are trying to make people believe that GPL equals piracy and lack of respect for copyright. (Of course, GPL is based on copyright, being a license on top of copyright, from which it derives its power, but they don't realize that).

In short, saying who cares because BSD is available is missing the big picture. Of course they want only BSD. They can steal it and it won't make them play nice and give anything back, the way the GPL does. Instead, they can use the free work of others and them make it proprietary, which is their craving.

Dupe. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997769)

I thought we already talked about this. []

a good explanation from.... (5, Interesting)

smd4985 (203677) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997772)

open-source advocate Bruce Perens: =f d_nc_1

He doesn't outright say it be he is almost implying that certain monied interests (M$?) could be indirectly funding the whole SCO effort to spread FUD about Linux.

Re:a good explanation from.... (1)

SerpentMage (13390) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997929)

I really do wonder about this. Why all of the sudden this interest? Remember that a certain company does own some of SCO.

Also is it not interesting that somebody decides to buy a license just now? Yes it could be to save their hide later down the road. Oddly also lately the Open Source topic by them happened to not exist. They just talked about their new product launches, etc. It seemed odd to me...

Maybe this is just conspiracy thinking, but I do think there is more to this than meets the eye. The question though is who is involved....

greed/fear based evile vs. hobbyist dogooders (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997774)

who'da thought. work for 10 years on something, then some fauxking felonious stock markup FraUDPeddler/bullshippers whaaaNT US to PAY them for yet other people's work. yuk.

we'll pay, for exactly what we want to pay for (fair value) & will strive dilligently to avoid passing even won thin dime onto the Godless evile wons, who use yOUR monIE, to .contain/MiSlead you/US, buy use of deceptive scriptdead ?pr? execrable. bad plan. tell 'em robbIE.

or, just consult with yOUR creator, cause if robbIE wasn't in hiding, he would in all probability, be forced to indicate support his/va lairIE's phonIE payper scam, &/or the SourceForgerIE's(tm) illicit designs(tm) on the saycrud kode of the dogooder hobbyists et AL, as well as having to acknowledge being a paid FUDgeSucker(tm)/dupe.

we're just now warming up the much maligned eyecon0meter(gpl), so there'll be more good gnus later, we hope.

The numbers prove it.. (1)

Aliencow (653119) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997784)

BS...err SCO is dying !

Re:The numbers prove it.. (1)

Destoo (530123) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997941)

SCO is already dead and was reanimated by MS to spread FUD, according to Bruce Perens at news. [] . So it's necromancy.

As you can see in the graphic of Historical and technical background, you'll notice there is no death date for BSD!

Take that, you BSD trolls!

(counterpoint: when something is not dead, it's in the process of dying, which is what the trolls have been saying.)

Position Paper still needs work... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997791)

I've been reviewing this document since ESR first published it on the web several weeks ago. I'm glad to see he's updating it, and the chart is a great improvement.

There are still some rough edges, though. For instance, directly below the AIX label on the chart the text says "AIX and Solaris are not included..."

It's a wonderful overview of the UNIX world, but it also underscores complacency among UNIX hackers for AT&T's license. I'm not sure the judge in the SCO v/s IBM case will look kindly on the "everybody did it so it was okay" attitude toward sharing code. Isn't that just the thing SCO is talking about?

My favorite quote... (5, Insightful)

HotNeedleOfInquiry (598897) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997814)

SCO's complaint is factually defective in that it implies claims about SCO's business and technical capabilities that are untrue. It is, indeed, very cleverly crafted to deceive a reader without intimate knowledge of the technology and history of Unix; it gives false impressions by both the suppression of relevant facts, the ambiguous suggestion of falsehoods, and in a few instances by outright lying.

Confused (3, Interesting)

Sheetrock (152993) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997818)

I'm reading in the paper where ESR uses a graphic to illustrate [] the relationship between the various Unixes/workalikes, and I'm a bit confused -- why is Linux way off to the side disconnected from everything else when a largish part is composed of BSD tools and another largish part is derived from Unix?

Re:Confused (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997869)

In short, the answer can be found in the acronym:


GNU is Not Unix :)

In full, read up on the Free Software Foundation site as to when and why Richard Stallman developed the GNU utilities and how Linus Torvalds was around at the right time to supply the missing piece to the system. i.e. the Linux kernel.

Re:Confused (2, Informative)

pix (139973) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997878)

Ah...but this is the point. Nothing in GNU/Linux is derived from Unix. Many things work in a similar fashion (by design), but they were coded from scratch

Re:Confused (4, Informative)

Platinum Dragon (34829) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997891)

Probably because the kernel itself has no direct relation to BSD-derived or USL-derived kernels, many of the tools are GNU (Gnu's Not Unix, remember?:) rewrites of basic Unix programs, and the BSD-derived software kind of found its way into various distributions over time since they worked just fine, thank you. I may be wrong, but I think even parts of the kernel can be traced to free BSD implementations alongside the homemade spaghetti. A hypothetical "standard" Linux installation is a mishmash of various codebases that developed outside of closed-source Unixen.

Defining Linux is notoriously tricky, since some people primarily rely on kernel heritage, while others try to build a definition based on the collection of software considered part of the "standard" package. This is complicated by various distributions that may or may not use the same pieces of software for similar tasks. The basics may be all GNU/BSD, but once you get beyond that, things can get ugly fast.

Someone making a chart would therefore likely either decide to stuff Linux off to one side on the justification that the kernel has no direct heritage, or draw a crapload of lines to other Unixen and codebases to really nail down every last relation.

Definition of "derived" is the key (5, Insightful)

OmniGeek (72743) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997892)

I believe the key is what "derived" means in the context of that graphic. Yes, Linux uses UNIX design concepts and structures, but that's true of all the OSes in the graphic; to that extent, they're all related. Solid lines indicate direct inheritance of code. The off-to-the-side bit reflects the fact that Linus' original project was built from scratch and didn't use code from the other family members.

WRT the use of BSD tools, I suspect this was a judgement call in producing a readable graphic describing major influences. Show all interactions and the page is an unreadable mess, (possibly resembling the profile of a gnu?).

Re:Confused (2, Informative)

Tet (2721) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997896)

why is Linux way off to the side disconnected from everything else when a largish part is composed of BSD tools and another largish part is derived from Unix?

Not true. Linux is almost completely written from scratch. There are a few ported BSD drivers, but the core OS is a completely new work that shares no code with "genuine" Unix. Of course, Linux distributions included BSD derived code, but the suit here regards the kernel, not userland, and the kernel wasn't derived from anything...

Re:Confused (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997901)

why is Linux way off to the side disconnected from everything else when a largish part is composed of BSD tools and another largish part is derived from Unix?

Bite your tounge. If Linux does have code in it derived from Unix, SCO wins.

Linux is off to the side with no connecting lines since the chart shows Unix heritage as derived from the original AT&T source code. Even BSD Unix started with a draft of AT&T code which was used as a starting point which eventualy morphed into something very different.

Linux, the kernel, ideally should have nothing in common with AT&T based code. Most Linux utilities are actually GNU, not BSD derived. The BSD stuff that is in there today no longer has a connection with the AT&T code.

GNU's Not Unix. (0, Troll)

mfh (56) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997952)

BSD tools are BSD tools, and Linux tools are GNU tools.

Why do you think Stallman and his ankle-biters are so adamant about calling it GNU/Linux? Cause they're all BSD fans?

Are SCO not just looking for a buyout ?? (5, Interesting)

MadX (99132) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997819)

Maybe there is something deeper here. SCO are servicing a shrinking Industry. Now before you go bankrupt, you need to make your company attractive enough to be bought out by someone who can use your assets/IP as "weapons" against the Free Software Movement (because you are losing against them).

The fact that M$ has suddenly bought licencing from SCO seems as though they may have just taken the bait that SCO cast out .. (and basically funded the court case)

So M$ buys them out, because they can claim the IP and put Linux in a bad light - even though the court case gets lost - there will always be doubt in the average corporate manager's mind. So M$ ultimately gain ..

SCO noises (2, Interesting)

KingRamsis (595828) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997823)

from the article
even were we to assume that every dime of their revenue came from the enterprise market, their 2002 share could not have exceeded 3.1% [5] This is at the level of statistical noise

not to mention legal noise and FUD spread by them.

seen this before (2, Interesting)

daveatwork (655626) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997826)

Yeah, i saw this ages ago (well, a few days anyhoo). I found it fairly interesting, until i looked outside and was mesmorised by the grass growing!

Honest, I do think this is an interesting case, purely from one view point. The claims SCO have raised are valid, but since the legal submission they gave to the court is 'open source', ie everyone can read it, the amount of evidence piling up against SCO is astonishing. The interesting point is how on earth SCO feel their gonna get out of this. I can't wait for it to hit the courts....

More Conspiracy ... (3, Interesting)

barfomar (557172) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997838)

With Microsoft is now licensing Unix from SCO,they're probably planning on using SCO as a FUD lever (or worse) against Linux The result could be a bidding war between IBM and Redmond to control SCO. IBM could buy out the sickly company to euthanize it. SCO sold their soul in hopes somebody would bid it up to take them out of their misery.

Just see who the author is... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997841)

Is that monkey from the haloween docs era. Just throw that guy a piece from a porn mag with a MS logo stuck on it and he will come up with anything imagination stresses.

E$R and his OSI monkeys band is supposed to be non-profit but will die to make a penny out of O$$ projects. Sorry, meant GNU/O$$.

We are O$$ mother-fuckers!

Legal issues (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997844)

Guys, I'm an attorney (hope you won't hold that against me), and I hope you won't consider this a troll.

IBM has not a legal leg to stand on. If anyone is interested, I will post the case law on which I base this opinion.

If IBM and the OSS community isn't careful, every corporate user of Linux is going to end up making payments to SCO. It'll end up costing more than M$!

Re:Legal issues (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997883)

How could you hope not to be considered a troll? Unless you are an attorney working on the case, you've seen the same court documents and press statements as the rest of us have. SCO has not demonstrated their claim. SCO acknowledges that IBM has a unrevokable, perpetual license to the SCO UNIX sources. You can show all of the case law you like, but you still have to have evidence.

I suggest that we all just wait and see what happens, because, for all of our comments on slashdot, it's what the judge hears from the two sides in the case that will really determine the outcome.

what would Nelson say? (1) (562495) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997855)

ha ha! Offcourse he would say "haha" whether is SCO or ISO :)

Re:what would Nelson say? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997861)

Please, $CO and GNU/O$I.

If you don't read anything else, read this... (4, Interesting)

HotNeedleOfInquiry (598897) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997860)

One is that, despite misleading claims implied on SCO's web pages by phrases like "exclusive licensing", SCO does not own or control the Unix trademark. As we have previously observed, that trademark -- and the privilege of suing IBM for relief on a trademark-violation theory -- belongs to The Open Group.

Furthermore, SCO is barred by the terms of the GNU General Public License from making copyright or patent-infringement claims on any technology shipped in conjunction with the Linux kernel that SCO/Caldera itself has been selling for the last eight years. Therefore, SCO may accuse IBM of misappropriating SCO-owned software to improve the Linux kernel only if that software does not actually ship with the Linux kernel it is alleged to be improving!

Finally, SCO is barred from making trade-secret claims on the contents of the Linux kernel, not merely by the fact that the kernel source is generally available, but by the fact that SCO has made the sources of its Linux kernel available for download from SCO's own website!

My experiences with Linux (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997866)

I used to work as a consultant for a Fortune 500 company (more than 10,000 employees). As an expert in the field of IT consulting, I think I can shed a little light on the current climate of the open source community, and Linux in particular. The main reason that open source software, and Linux in particular, is failing is due to the underlying immaturity of the technology and the perception of the viral GNU license.

I know that the above statements are strong, but I have hard facts to back it up with. At the Fortune 500 company that I worked for, we wanted to leverage the power of Linux and associated open source technologies to benefit our server pool. The perception that Linux is "free" was too much to ignore. I recommended to the company that we use the newest version of Linux, version 9.0. My expectations were high that it would outperform our current solution at the time, Windows2000, which was doing an absolutely superb job (and still is!) serving as web, DNS, and FTP servers.

I felt that I was up to the job to convert the entire server pool to the Linux technology. I had several years experience programming VB, C#, ASP, and .NET Framework at the kernel level. I didn't use C, because contrary to popular belief, ASP and VB can go just as low level as C can, and the latest .NET VB compiler produces code that is more portable and faster than C. I took it upon myself to configure and compile all of the necessary shareware versions of software that we needed, including sendmail, apache, and BIND. I even used the latest version of gcc (3.1) to increase the execution time of the binaries. After a long chain of events, the results of the system were less than impressive..

The first bombshell to hit my project was that my client found out from another consultant that the GNU community has close ties to former communist leaders. Furthermore, he found out that the 'x' in Linux was a tribute to the former Communist philosopher, Carl Marx, whose name also ends in 'x'. The next bombshell to hit my project was the absolutely horrible performance. I knew from the beginning that Linux wasn't ready for the desktop, but I had always been told by my colleagues that it was better suited for a "server". As soon as I replaced all of the Windows2000 servers with Linux servers, the Linux servers immediately went into swap. Furthermore, almost all of the machines were quad-processor x86 servers. We had no idea that Linux had such awful SMP support. After less than 1 day in service, I was constantly having to restart servers, because for some reason, many of the servers were experiencing kernel panics caused by mod_perl crashing apache! The hardship did not end there! Apparently, the version of BIND installed on the server pool was remotely exploitable. Soon after we found that out, a new worm was remotely infecting all of our servers! We were not expecting this, because our IIS servers running on Windows2000 had never experienced a worm attack. Microsoft has always provided us with patches in the unlikely event that an exploit was found. It took us hundreds of man-hours just to disinfect our Linux servers! After just 48 hours of operating Linux servers in our server pool, we had exhausted our budget for the entire year! It was costing us approximately 75% more to run Linux than Windows2000.

Needless to say, I will not be recommending Linux to any of my Fortune 500 clients. In the beginning, we thought that since Linux was such "old" technology, it would be more mature than anything on the market. We also found out the hard way that rag-tag volunteer efforts responsible for Apache and BIND simply are not able to compete with the professional operations of Microsoft. I guess the old saying is true; "You get what you pay for!" Needless to say, I will be using Microsoft's "shared license" solution for my enterprise clients, rather than the communist GNU license.

As it stands now, I do believe Linux has some practical uses. I think it will be useful in a University setting for first year computer science students to compile their "Hello World!" programs on (provided that gcc won't kernel panic the machine). Simply put, Linux just doesn't handle the rigors of a real-world work environment.

An overblown paper (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997868)

IBM neither requested nor required SCO's permission to call their AIX offering a Unix.

Big whoop. Yet another pointless, posturing remark from a paper of dubious value.

If you have a knowledge of Unix history, read the paper with a critical eye, and do a little research, its not hard to find errors, omissions, overstatements, and what appear to be some dubious legal claims.

I think that the Linux community is going to be very disappointed if it is relying upon this paper for its views.

I just read the whole thing (1)

techstar25 (556988) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997887)

If you only read one position paper all year . . .

Seriously, this should be required reading for all slashdot visitors. It had a lot of great info. If you read the paper, you'd realize that SCO doesn't have a chance in hell (which is kind of what we thought anyway).

counter sue sco (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997895)

can we counter sue these motherfuckers for messing with us for no reason, knowingly trying to fuck up an important part of the industry?

This is BS .. fuck.

ESR just couldn't resist... (3, Insightful)

spakka (606417) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997904)

[4] We use the term "hacker" in its correct and original sense here, as an enthusiast or artist of computer programming.

'Hacker' is pejorative for many concerned with law enforcement, who do not care about ESR's 'hacker/cracker' agenda. Why not just call them 'contributors' or 'authors'? I don't see references to 'Micro$oft' or even 'Unices' in the document.

SCO is crazy (4, Insightful)

Andy Dodd (701) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997907)

When suing someone else in the corporate world, you must be very careful of one thing:

Make sure they can't countersue you on something else.

If IBM were smart, they'd go looking through their patents and technology and countersue SCO into the stone age.

Chances are EXTREMELY good that a company as large as IBM has something to fire back at SCO. Patents are as useful for defending oneself against extortion as they are for extorting money from people in the corporate world. (Many companies file patents solely for defensive purposes - If someone goes after them for patent infringement, they hope that they can strike back with their own patent infringement claim.)

lawyers read slashdot? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997908)

I wonder if lawyers (hopefully the ones on our side) search/read thru slashdot and other places similar for ideas. I hope they do. Amongst all of the crap there are some half way decent ideas, facts, and angles.

Microsoft linkage (5, Interesting)

moehoward (668736) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997909)

Considering the history of SCO in the mid-late 80s, you have to wonder how closely MS and SCO remained linked at the executive levels. Gates really liked UNIX and MS had their hands in the mix in that time frame. Gates is technical and understands why Unix/Linux is powerful and he actually liked working with it. SCO took over all the MS aspects of their initiative (sort of) back in the 80s/early 90s.

I suspect that their is more here than meets the eye in terms of collusion between MS and SCO. I could see MS picking up SCO if they can damage Linux in the process.

To spell it out, here is what I'm suggesting (IMHO): I suspect MS and SCO execs are acquaintences. I suspect that MS execs tugged on the SCO execs to make some troubles for Linux (starting with the IBM thing whenever). I suspect that they have a big bag of such issues with which to harass Linux vendors. I suspect that MS will enter the Linux/Unix arena in the next 3 to 5 years, possibly through an aquisition of SCO.

Question: Was SCO part of the anti-trust suits and related suits against MS? If so to what degree?

Man I just read that whole thing... (0, Offtopic)

xMonkey (154829) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997940)


Interactive UNIX (0, Offtopic)

thomasa (17495) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997945)

I spend $1500 on a unlimited user UNIX
called Interactive UNIX. It was marketed
by Sun at the time. It was a true SVR3.2
running on Intel. This was in 1994.

They only need to muddy the waters (2, Interesting)

ewg (158266) | more than 11 years ago | (#5997949)

Win, lose, or draw, SCO can hurt Linux merely by muddying the waters.

Wonder what Ray Noorda thinks of all this? (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997959)

"In 1994, a group of Novell alumni formed Caldera Systems International with the backing of Novell's founder, Ray Noorda. Caldera was intended to be a Linux distributor, aiming at the business and enterprise market."

Interesting how Caldera held the torch as it were for DRDOS (which IMHO was the TRUE and technically superior DOS for the PC, insofar that it really WAS better than MSDOS (aka "Messy DOS"), it derived directly from from Digital Research whereas MSDOS was the bastardization of Digital Research's CPM and further mangled by Bill Gates et al.) and DRDOS was MSDOS' direct and main competitor back in the day. Also interesting is the fact that Ray Noorda was involved in the formation of Caldera. It's no secret that there was no love lost between Mr. Norda and Bill Gates - especially from Ray Noorda's side.

With the way that SCO/Caldera has appeared to have become Microsoft's bitch, Mr. Noorda must be choking on his biscuits right about now.

ISC Interactive Unix (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5997972)

To add to the list of x86 UNIX's, there is ISC Interactive UNIX which SunSoft bought. If I remember my history correctly, they used portions of that to help with drivers for Intel Solaris.
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