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Dvorak On Microsoft/Novell Deal

CmdrTaco posted more than 7 years ago | from the they-all-wear-party-hats dept.

218

zaxios writes, "John C. Dvorak has weighed in on the recent Novell-Microsoft pact. Among his insights: 'Microsoft has been leery of doing too much with Linux because of all the weirdness with the licenses and the possibility that one false move would make a Microsoft product public domain at worst, or subject to the GPL at best.' But now, 'the idea is to create some sort of code that is jammed into Linux and whose sole purpose is to let some proprietary code run under Linux without actually "touching" Linux in any way that would subject the proprietary code to the GPL.' According to Dvorak, it's only a matter of time before Linux is 'cracked' by Microsoft, meaning Microsoft figures out a way to run proprietary code on it."

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218 comments

Meta-flamebait (5, Insightful)

2.7182 (819680) | more than 7 years ago | (#16769979)

I have come to think of any Dvorak story posted by Slashdot as meta-flamebait. They know it is just going to cause the comments to degenerate into a total circus of hatred.

Re:Meta-flamebait (1)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770141)

Its not much of a flamebait.

Linux is a free platform that anybody can develop on with NO cost in software. It is a neutral ground in that any company and any interest can do "stuff".

The only existing rule is if you want to have access to the majority of free code, you must, in turn be free too. But there's NO requirement in using this massive body of prior code.

I ENCOURAGE anybody developing for Linux because it is a free system.

Pr0n Loves Linux (0, Offtopic)

agent (7471) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770213)

The p0rn industry loves Linux!

Re:Meta-flamebait (1)

Marxist Hacker 42 (638312) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770361)

The interesting thing in this though is the potential death knoll for Single User Windows Only Desktops. If everything proprietary in Windows can be run in Suse Linux, and everything in Suse Linux can be run on the Microsoft Virtual Machine, then there is no longer any need to keep a separate Windows machine around.

Re:Meta-flamebait (3, Interesting)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770403)

I couldn't agree more. Dvorak has been proven to be an asshat so many times I can't begin to count them. I mean read this paragraph:

With a shim, Microsoft could possibly do the following: Take a Linux distro, say SUSE; then create a shim that talks to the SUSE kernel. Publish the source code of the shim and what it does. Then take a proprietary Microsoft optimizer that lets various apps run on Linux perfectly with modifications to the Linux core--but that actually runs on the shim, not Linux.

We already have something like that. It's called Java. Java hasn't put Linux to the torch. What makes Dvorak think that Microsoft will be able to do it?

Re:Meta-flamebait (1)

Ginger Unicorn (952287) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770635)

Its sounds a lot like WINE. Why the hell would Microsoft want to reimplement WINE? Or maybe he's suggesting MS want to appropriate the Linux Kernel for future versions of windows. Either way i think none of this has anything to do with the recent "pact".

Re:Meta-flamebait (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770815)

Wouldn't the perfect "shim" be wine, at least for windows applications?

Re:Meta-flamebait (4, Funny)

mordors9 (665662) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770601)

I am just glad I can go back to breathing. Ever since the big announcement came out, I have been holding my breath until Dvorak told us what to think about it.

microsoftlinux.com (1)

reaktor (949798) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770613)

http://www.microsoftlinux.com/ [microsoftlinux.com]

Sort of weird but interesting page here.

Re:microsoftlinux.com (1)

GigsVT (208848) | more than 7 years ago | (#16771139)

Hasn't the guy ever heard of letting lines wrap at the edge of your screen?

It's not like he's using some complex CSS layout, it's almost plain text, but he still manages to screw it up.

Novell is new SCO (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770717)

The key words are patent exchange and protection from lawsuits. Novel will include Microsoft GPL'd code giving Microsoft oportunity to sue anyone else who is trying using it.

Novell is new SCO...

Re:Meta-flamebait (5, Insightful)

number6x (626555) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770879)

I think its more that Dvorak is almost completely clueless, but is very well spoken and is a good writer. He sounds competent to the PHB's, but to anylone who is familiar with the GPL and open source, he sounds like a complete ignoramous. All GPL'd code must be copyrighted. The GPL cannot be applied to public domain software, and it cannot make proprietary code into public domain code. Just read the GPL. The GPL and Copyright go hand in hand. So no matter how well he writes, he just comes off as an idiot. Since so many paople take him seriously, this leads to the flame wars over the well written non-sense he prints.

Re:Meta-flamebait (5, Interesting)

jsebrech (525647) | more than 7 years ago | (#16771145)

I have come to think of any Dvorak story posted by Slashdot as meta-flamebait. They know it is just going to cause the comments to degenerate into a total circus of hatred.

They're not just flamebait, they're flamebait on purpose. The purpose of the dvorak flamebait articles is generating clicks on the articles in question, and generating the ad revenue linked with those clicks. This has even been admitted by dvorak (or one of the dvoraks, since it's likely to just be a name they assign to writers), and this admission of guilt [slashdot.org] has appeared on slashdot.

The key thing to learn about this is to never, ever, browse to a dvorak article, because that is exactly what they want you to do.

Re:Meta-flamebait (1)

buswolley (591500) | more than 7 years ago | (#16771155)

meta-flaimbait? A post with knowledge about its flame processes?

If all else fails (1)

thejrwr (1024073) | more than 7 years ago | (#16769993)

I think microsoft is trying too hard, all they need is to "shim" the kernel and no more worrys about the gpl!

The Dvorak (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16769995)

In traditional weather lore, the community gathers around to watch a very special groundhog. If the groundhog emerges from its burrow on this day and fails to see its shadow because the weather is cloudy, winter will soon end. If the groundhog sees its shadow because the weather is bright and clear, it will be frightened and run back into its hole, and the winter will continue for six more weeks. It's odd that they pay attention to this particular groundhog because it's essentially no smarter or stupid than any other groundhog.

Re:The Dvorak (1)

null etc. (524767) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770083)

It's odd that they pay attention to this particular groundhog because it's essentially no smarter or stupid than any other groundhog.


Yes, but this groundhog has 90% of the market share on groundhog holes.

Re:The Dvorak (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770165)

Oh my god, the groundhog is Dvorak, the community is Slashdot. You're all watching someone comment on something when your average reader on Slashdot is probably just as good a source. So Dvorak has done good things for computing, does that make him a legal expert on the GPL and Microsoft/Novell deals?

Re:The Dvorak (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770525)

You must be new here. If you knew anything about slashdot you'd know that we only even look at the Dvorak stories to pick them apart. (Of course, all the people who are visiting his stories without an ad blocker are PART OF THE PROBLEM, but whatever.)

Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (4, Interesting)

Salvance (1014001) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770003)

As scary as a 'Microsoft Linux' sounds, there'd actually be some significant advantages to Microsoft apps being able to run on Linux (as pointed out to me by another /. reader yesterday). To a system administrator, the prospect of having servers that cooperate better, and possibly a single secure desktop, is enticing. Hardcore Linux users probably scoff at the idea of running Office on a Linux box, but as a IT manager myself it sounds like a great idea. All of a sudden, I could rollout a single secure Linux O/S to all desktops and servers, then have the ability to run Windows apps when needed.

Is this Microsoft's intent? Unfortunately, probably not. I don't see them providing users with the ability to get rid of their Windows PCs ... they will probably either maintain a cooperative capability (a la Virtualization) that the Novell deal provides, or use their Linux foothold as a means to eventually entice Linux users back to Windows.

Who knows, the end result will be interesting for sure.

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (1)

cepayne (998850) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770115)

Why would they bother?

Java already exists as a higher level interpreter to the main O.S.

There are many business class software packages which run purely
on Java (OpenOffice, etc). If MS can't create their apps to run
on Java, then their limitation has been identified.

Remember that Microsoft is a company with a portfolio of acquisitions,
and not innovations.

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (3, Insightful)

nschubach (922175) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770345)

Why would they bother?

Java already exists as a higher level interpreter to the main O.S.
Microsoft doesn't have full control over Java.

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (1)

Dog-Cow (21281) | more than 7 years ago | (#16771055)

OO is not written in Java. There are almost no general-purpose (non-programmer IDEs) written in Java for the desktop.

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (2, Insightful)

Salvance (1014001) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770219)

Another thought ... what if Microsoft just released their .NET framework (basically taking over the Mono project) on Linux? Since .NET (C# in particular) is an interpretted language, it would then be possible to run closed-source C# programs on Linux. This would give MS the Linux "in" that they apparently desire. Then all they'd need to do is rewrite Office (or any other apps) under .NET, and they'd have cross platform apps. I realize that this isn't trivial, but it seems a lot easier than supporting multiple code bases over a long period of time.

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770459)

This probably is their goal with .NET. I guess large portions of the Vista OS are actually .NET managed code now? Or so I've been hearing. I suspect they plan to make the kernel of their OS irrelevant to the applications (and the various services!) so that if NT becomes too arduous to support they can ditch it and go with something else. It wouldn't greatly surprise me to one day see NT run on top of a Linux kernel, as kind of a MacOSX-esque system. I think it would allow Microsoft to continue selling office, so someday when Linux starts to take over, if Microsoft isn't dead by then (because at this rate it will be long after I'm dead, too) they'll have to finally become a Linux company. I do think that it could be decades though :P

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (2)

truthsearch (249536) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770509)

Never gonna happen. Part of the deal is for Microsoft to make no patent violation claims over Mono as it stands now. Microsoft would rather people virtualize Windows since it means more control plus more licenses. And that's the point of the deal: to control virtualization.

Making .NET more cross-platform would be nice for customers, but it's not in Microsoft's interest.

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770293)

I think that's a big difference between the people who are in the wait and see mode, and the people frothing at the mouth. It's fairly easy to move one person to Linux and use Open Office. But to change a whole business or organization to Linux would be a major shock and a potential disaster that almost nobody would want to put their job and livelyhood on the line for. Making that transition as painless as possible is attracting.

I think this whole situation is a difference of opinion between organizations running large networks, and people with a few machines spread out around their house. It's a whole different world and thought process between the two.

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (4, Informative)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770341)

As scary as a 'Microsoft Linux' sounds, there'd actually be some significant advantages to Microsoft apps being able to run on Linux (as pointed out to me by another /. reader yesterday).


There is absolutely no reason why Microsoft can't write code that runs on Linux and still have it be proprietary.

Absolutely no reason at all.

The kernel is GPL, yes, but Linus' license modification clearly states that closed source code can run on the Linux kernel and shall not be considered a 'derivative work'.

Tons of proprietary code runs on Linux with absolutely no GPL issues: Oracle, Veritas Netbackup, WordPerfect, StarOffice (pieces are proprietary), etc.

As for toolkits, GTK+ is LGPL. Meaning Microsoft could target closed source GUI applications for GTK+ with no issues. QT is GPL unless you make arrangement$$$ with TrollTech.

As for desktops, some parts of GNOME are GPL, others are LGPL. Gotta be careful there, but if you just link against GTK+ and not GNOME libraries, Microsoft should be okay.

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (4, Insightful)

truthsearch (249536) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770457)

Those who actually bothered to read some details of the deal know it's all about virtualization. Microsoft realizes there's soon going to be a huge virtualization market. If they don't play into it they will simply lose control of big customers. So to control the virtualization market they can now tell customers they offer a more complete solution with the help of Novell. They can also use Novell to control the user experience. They need to make sure that customers that go multi-OS with relative ease still license Windows. If they alienate too many customers then those that try Linux may just switch completely.

So this is a play at the corporate market to retain control while use of virtualization grows.

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (1)

mordors9 (665662) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770555)

Thanks Rodney King- Why can't we all just get along....

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770781)

Is this Microsoft's intent? Unfortunately, probably not.

      No, Microsoft's intent is to OWN that secure desktop, and charge you for it. As well as charge you micropayments for every single use, on every single processor, of its software. Oh they also plan to change the API every now and again, and not make documentation available - unless you pay membership fees for the SDK and supporting docs, of course. Or you could sign up for courses that will teach you how to code on their new "Secure" desktop.

Re:Hmmm .... Microsoft Linux? (1)

21chrisp (757902) | more than 7 years ago | (#16771231)

"or use their Linux foothold as a means to eventually entice Linux users back to Windows"

It seems like Apple is doing a much better job of enticing Linux users. Almost all Linux users I know have already switched to OSX, at least on the desktop.

I call bullshit (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770007)

He has no idea of what he is talking about. Of course one can already run proprietary code in Linux. Many libraries are available under the LGPL instead of GPL. This deal does not change much to that fact.

Re:I call bullshit (1)

'nother poster (700681) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770063)

Shhhh. What the hell are using logic for?!?!? This is an emotional issue.

Re:I call bullshit (2, Interesting)

Gleng (537516) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770121)

That was my first thought. There are many proprietory, closed source apps that run on Linux, with no legal or technical problems at all.

I am beginning to suspect that this Dvorak chap can't tell his arse from his elbow.

Re:I call bullshit (2, Insightful)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770399)

Not only could Dvorak completely fail to distinguish his arse from his elbow, he could then get paid by a magazine to write a rant about why elbows are evil things that should never be allowed near arses in the first place and clearly anyone not thinking with their elbows agrees. He could then get it posted to Slashdot, rake in another round of ad hits for his bosses, and increase his own notoriety.

Re:I call bullshit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770583)

I am beginning to suspect that this Dvorak chap can't tell his arse from his elbow.


Of course he can. His ELBOW is the thing he's NOT pulling all is predictions out of.

It's a trap! (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770013)

Here's an article where the tag is appropriate. Amazingly, even Dvorak thinks it's a trap.

why are we publicizing this FUD? (5, Interesting)

dAzED1 (33635) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770021)

yeah, because Oracle cracked Linux. So did Veritas (which I was personally running products from on Linux servers as much as 5 years ago).

Bullsh*t. By putting this on the front page of /. taco, you're merely assisting MS's propaganda machine further demonize the GPL and Linux in general. I don't suppose you made charitable donations to SCO too, did you?

Re:why ... Good question! Can anyone explain... (2, Insightful)

irenaeous (898337) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770135)

what the heck Dvorak is saying? Don't we already have an open source "shim" in the form of the LGPL?

Dvorak's column does not seem to be coherent to me.

Not the LGPL (1)

spitzak (4019) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770633)

In fact the "shim" is Linux itself. You can run proprietary applications on Linux just fine. You might say it's because of the LGPL libc, but it is legal to write a closed-source executable that uses no libraries and just uses system calls.

Dvorak is being an itiot or a shill. He has once again perpetuated the myth that the GPL is some sort of "virus" that "infects" code and makes it all GPL. That is nonsense. Nothing has happened to your code. If you remove the GPL portions, you can do anything you want with the part you write.

Re:why are we publicizing this FUD? (2, Insightful)

digidave (259925) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770331)

Are you trying to tell me that not every program that runs on Linux somehow gets stripped of its copyright and becomes public domain? That clearly flies in the face of all the sound logic I've been hearing for years from closed-source Linux competitors.

Doesn't proprietary code already run it? (2, Insightful)

petabyte (238821) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770027)

Umm, so I know I've run proprietary code on Linux. Nvidia Drivers at the moment as well as Flash and Java. Codeweavers, Oracle, and that small company called IBM ...

I'm sure many people can run MS Office in Wine. Now why you'd want to is another matter ...

Can I mod his comment -1 (not so insightful)?

No, you can't mod him (2, Funny)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770677)

But you can tag him "fuckwit".

 

Don't Touch... (0, Troll)

null etc. (524767) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770033)

Supposedly, the GPL is some sort of virus which, once touched, makes all proprietary software into open source. Microsoft has good reason to be afraid. Symantec can't innoculate against that type of virus.

Open source "at best" (4, Insightful)

Mateo_LeFou (859634) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770211)

Public domain at worst, according to Dvorak. The man's grasp of licensing is astounding, isn't it?

BTW when he says "Microsoft has been leery of doing too much with Linux because of all the weirdness with the licenses" I think it's pretty hilarious because:

-(obv) he's projecting his own confusion about licenses onto microsoft
-(also obv) he and his ilk are the creators of the confusion b/c they love writing columns about what they do not understand
-Sorry .. is the GPL that much tougher to comprehend than, for example, the Windows EULA?

Re:Open source "at best" (1)

nuzak (959558) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770337)

> Public domain at worst, according to Dvorak. The man's grasp of licensing is astounding, isn't it?

He knows perfectly well what he's talking about. The best trolls always do.

Re:Don't Touch... (1)

kfg (145172) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770401)

Supposedly, . . .

. . .according to Microsoft press statements,. . .

. . . the GPL is some sort of virus which, once touched, makes all proprietary software into open source.

KFG

I would... (1)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770039)

Love Microsoft and others develop software for Linux. It would give Linux much needed credibility to the people who only agree with Microsoft. And best yet, I would like to have things like Microsoft Office, Crystal Reports, and other MS based apps.

And most of all, I'd have the stability of Linux and could run MS programs (there's not much in terms of business productivity apps in Linux).

Re:I would... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770181)

Crystal Reports


Ever hear of BIRT [eclipse.org] ?

Dvorak once again shows his cluelessness (5, Informative)

GauteL (29207) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770069)

1. Use of a bit of GPL code mixed with proprietary code does not mean that All Your Code Are Belong To Us, it means that Microsoft would have to remove the GPL infringing code, and possibly pay damages to the copyright owner.

2. Nothing at all is stopping you from running proprietary code on a GNU/Linux system, as long as the GPL license on the GNU/Linux parts of the system is honoured. You can easily use the Linux kernel, the GNU Tools and put a proprietary graphical system on it or just running proprietary software packages. Apple uses quite a few GNU tools, yet keeps Aqua closed, and lots of vendors have released proprietary software packages for Linux.

Re:Dvorak once again shows his cluelessness (1)

WasterDave (20047) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770387)

Nothing at all is stopping you from running proprietary code on a GNU/Linux system
Exactly. I looked at this and thought "yeah, it's called userland". I'm quite happy to believe Dvorak is this stupid but not Ballmer et al.

As an aside I've been off on holiday and have come back to see this deal ... and I'm not sure I fully get it. Like, if MS want to let SLES be more interoperable surely all they need to do is open their protocol specs up more - which, IIRC, they actually have to do under the antitrust settlement. Next thing I know MS are giving Novell money...

Go figure.

Dave

Re:Dvorak once again shows his cluelessness (1)

isdnip (49656) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770769)

Userland? What a concept...

[setting the wayback machine to the 1990s] ...lessee, Microsoft here. What are we going to do next? I see, let's do a web browser. Let's put it into the kernel! Yeah, that'll impress the Department of Justice! And hey, let's move some multimedia stuff into the kernel. And of course the whole graphical subsystem should be in the kernel....

They don't seem to think very highly of userland in their own products, so maybe they see it as useful in Linux?

I, for one, ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770075)

welcome our new Microsoft Suse overlords!

run proprietary code on it? (4, Informative)

zotz (3951) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770093)

"According to Dvorak, it's only a matter of time before Linux is 'cracked' by Microsoft, meaning Microsoft figures out a way to run proprietary code on it."

Gee, everyone else knows how to run proprietary code on linux. MS can't be too swift if they can't figure that.

Perhaps more is meant by "run on it"???

all the best,

drew
http://www.ourmedia.org/node/262954 [ourmedia.org]
Sayings - Deterred Bahamian Novel
CC BY-SA

Re:run proprietary code on it? (2, Funny)

lightyear4 (852813) | more than 7 years ago | (#16771233)

Perhaps more is meant by "run on it"???

Ah that was a mere prepositional mix-up by marketing. I do believe that 'run over it' was the intended meaning.

Sounds familiar.... (4, Insightful)

Himring (646324) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770097)

As I offered earlier:

"Under the patent cooperation agreement, Novell's customers receive directly from Microsoft a covenant not to sue. Novell does not receive a patent license or covenant not to sue from Microsoft, and we have not agreed with Microsoft to any condition that would contradict the conditions of the GPL. Our agreement does not affect the freedom that Novell or anyone else in the open source community, including developers, has under the GPL and does not impose any condition that would contradict the conditions of the GPL. Therefore, the agreement is fully compliant with the GPL,"

http://www.linux-watch.com/news/NS4685037869.html [linux-watch.com]

That reminds me of another, historical, agreement:

"Under the treaty, England receives directly from Germany a promise not to attack Poland. England does not receive a promise not to attack Germany, and we have not agreed with Germany to any condition that would contradict the conditions of previous treaties. Our agreement does not affect the freedom that Poland or any other country in Europe, including France, has under previous treaties and does not impose any condition that would contradict the conditions of such treaties. Therefore, the treaty is fully compliant with all previous treaties."

Sincerely,

Neville Chamberlain

Re:Sounds familiar.... (1)

Creepy Crawler (680178) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770233)

Nice reference to World War 1.

Too bad that most Americans wont get it. (now, gets anecdotal posts of Americans who do get it)

Re:Sounds familiar.... (3, Interesting)

nuzak (959558) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770381)

> Nice reference to World War 1.
> Too bad that most Americans wont get it.

You certainly don't, considering that you didn't even reference the right war.

Or was I just treated to a demonstration of Dvorak's journalism technique?

Re:Sounds familiar.... (1)

Dunbal (464142) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770649)

you certainly don't, considering that you didn't even reference the right war.

      Yeah, everyone knows WW1 was all about sinking that Bismark guy, and Napoleon was king of Scotland and they fought Augustus in Moscow with the help of Richard III...

Re:Sounds familiar.... (1)

ajs318 (655362) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770391)

Actually, it was World War II. You fail it. Have a nice day.

Re:Sounds familiar.... (1)

Eagleartoo (849045) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770593)

Your right the American's won't get it. Because I thought Neville Chamberlain was in politics during World War II, guess that shows how EFFECTIVE our education is over here. I don't think we'll ever be more than those ignorant farm boys sometimes, which says a lot about what is happening in this current MS/Novell. History repeats itself because we fail to learn from history. Or at least we fail to learn from history because it's taught by (american) football coaches.

Re:Sounds familiar.... (1)

bigbigbison (104532) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770805)

Your right the American's won't get it.
... guess that shows how EFFECTIVE our education is over here.


Please tell me "your" trying to test us by using "your!"

Re:Sounds familiar.... (1)

Wudbaer (48473) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770625)

Especially as this refers to WW II... damn World Wars, always mixing up with each other.

Read COPYING (3, Insightful)

ettlz (639203) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770101)

the idea is to create some sort of code that is jammed into Linux and whose sole purpose is to let some proprietary code run under Linux without actually "touching" Linux in any way that would subject the proprietary code to the GPL. This would include mechanisms that alter the internals of Linux without having to publish the code and changes as open-source or allow them to be used by others, as is required by the GPL.

i.e., what nVidia and ATi have been doing for years now?

Nevertheless: Not In My Kernel.

Proprietary code runs on Linux (4, Insightful)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770103)

It is no big deal. Tons and tons of proprietary code runs on Linux. Almost all the CAD companies, EDA companies and CFD companies and so many others support Linux for their proprietary products. It is very difficult for MS to port its product to Linux because it is a huge spaghetti tangle of activeX and COM and .NET and other MS-only technologies. But Dvorak, in his infinite ignorance finds some completely untenable theory.

Can't run proprietary software on linux???? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770175)

Since when can we not run proprietary software on linux? Did Quake3 get "infected" with the GPL because I purchased Id Software's binaries? Isn't this article summary complete nonsense?

Farfetched-can't even get working DOS emulator :) (1)

scottsk (781208) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770197)

Ok, so complex Windows 32-bit software on Linux sounds farfetched. I haven't gotten a DOS emulator to work. I have to use 2 of them, one for FCB legacy programs and another to run programs the first won't run. Let's get the simple, single-tasking DOS emulation working, THEN worry about Win32...

Re:Farfetched-can't even get working DOS emulator (1)

Shawn is an Asshole (845769) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770469)

DOSBox [sf.net] or VMWare Player [vmware.com] + FreeDOS [freedos.org] .

Really, though, who still uses dos apps?

Win32 compatibility is decent with Wine, though it has to be the most user hostile piece of software I deal with. Crossover Office is worth the money if you need to run Windows apps.

Re:Farfetched-can't even get working DOS emulator (1)

Laur (673497) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770553)

Ok, so complex Windows 32-bit software on Linux sounds farfetched.
Not really. People have been running MS Office & Photoshop in Wine for years. Where have you been?

I haven't gotten a DOS emulator to work. I have to use 2 of them, one for FCB legacy programs and another to run programs the first won't run.
I assume you've heard of both DOSBox and DOSEmu. I haven't played with DOSEmu very much, but DOSBox is compatible enough to run Win3.1. What are these emulators missing that you need?

Let's get the simple, single-tasking DOS emulation working, THEN worry about Win32...
Since it's not likely to be the same people working on DOS emulation and Windows emulation, there is nothing lost by working on them concurrently.

Office (1)

robpoe (578975) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770227)

I, for one, welcome our new Microvell overlords. Or is that Novesoft?

I gotta duck 'cos Ballmer is throwing a chair my way..

In all seriousness, though...

MS Office is where it is. It's standard corporate feed. OOo is ok, but only ok. It's a clone of Word. But it's a LOT slower and doesn't support everything that Word does (Try to open a complex doc in OOo that Word saved). Oh, and it's not compatible with ALL documents. Try a seriously complex spreadsheet that uses ODBC to talk to a Faircomm database server and uses VB based macros to compute things that would normally be done by hand. Oh yeah, and there are 15 worksheets in this spreadsheet. OOo wouldn't get anywhere CLOSE..

The Embedded space maybe? (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770229)

Microsoft is loosing to Linux the the set-top box, DVR, and many other interesting little markets in a big way.
Maybe this is a way for Microsoft to get the WMP, Windows Codecs, and IE7 in to the Linux world.
Or it could be because of mono. Trying to kill of Java once and for all.
Or it could be China. China is moving to Linux and that could be a HUGE market.

What's wrong with proprietary code? (1)

MMC Monster (602931) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770243)

I'm pretty sure anyone can sell proprietary code for linux with no problems. Many companies do it already, including Oracle. The problem is if you want your code to be part of the kernel.

I know that. Just about everyone here knows that. The top guys at Microsoft know that. Why doesn't Dvorak?

P.S. Don't click the link to his article. You'll just encourage him to write more drivel.

It's the license, stupid! (4, Insightful)

creimer (824291) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770255)

Microsoft has been leery of doing too much with Linux because of all the weirdness with the licenses and the possibility that one false move would make a Microsoft product public domain at worst, or subject to the GPL at best.

Comparing the GPL and Vista EULA, Microsoft is winning the weirdness license war hands down.

Huh? (3, Interesting)

NoMoreNicksLeft (516230) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770259)

... meaning Microsoft figures out a way to run proprietary code on it.

What, like writing a program and distributing it as a binary-only for-pay title?

It's only GPL if you use someone else's code. Why in the fucking hell are we still hearing stupid shit like this in 2006?

It's the Dvorak Clown! (5, Funny)

DittoBox (978894) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770265)

John C. Dvorak has weighed in on the recent Novell-Microsoft pact. Among his insights [...]

That's not a group of words we see very often when coupled with that man's name.

Re:It's the Dvorak Clown! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770485)

**John C. Dvorak has weighed in on the recent Novell-Microsoft pact. Among his insights [...]

That's not a group of words we see very often when coupled with that man's name.


Arrgh, that's supposed to be insanity. Damned MS Word autocorrection.

There is an old saying (1)

IWantMoreSpamPlease (571972) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770281)

"If you can't beat them...buy them out"

I have no idea what MS is attempting to do by partnering themselves with Novell/SuSE, with the possible exception of buying out (and shutting down) all competitors to its desktop (and server) OS.

Monopoly abuse to be sure, but it has worked for them in the past....

Re:There is an old saying (3, Interesting)

petrus4 (213815) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770557)

Monopoly abuse to be sure, but it has worked for them in the past....

The only way they can do that in this case would be to destroy access to the toolchain...because without the toolchain, nobody can create new distributions.

This is where, as much as it pains me to admit it, with the GNU/Linux stuff, in a way RMS is right. The GNU project is very much the centre of gravity where Linux is concerned, because it is how Linux propogates itself.

Microsoft *could* sink Linux if it took out the FSF...but the good news there is that the FSF is very well protected by public opinion. If there is one thing Stallman genuinely *is* extremely good at, it's at least developing the appearance of holding the moral high ground. ESR was right when he wrote that Stallman has a thirst for martyrdom...Stallman recognises the power that martyrdom contains. He uses Gandhi's scorpionic [allaboutfrogs.org] tactics extremely well.

dvorak .... insights? (1)

everphilski (877346) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770365)

you have got to be kidding me ...

Re:dvorak .... insights? (1)

slashdotmsiriv (922939) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770759)

yes, "dvorak ... insights" sounds like an oxymoron to me too, something like "military intelligence" sort of thing ...

WTF? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770437)

"According to Dvorak, it's only a matter of time before Linux is 'cracked' by Microsoft, meaning Microsoft figures out a way to run proprietary code on it.""

Figure out a way to run proprietary code??? Dvorak is "cracked". What the hell is he and/or MS talking about?

It isn't much harder than:
1. Write the code
2. Compile it
3. Ship binary
4. Profit!

I mean, seriously, how hard would it be, in any "legal entanglement" sense, to ship a version of Office that ran under Linux? Companies have shipped plenty of proprietary software that runs on Linux, and unless it is compiling GPL source code into it, there is no entanglement. The fact that the OS is GPL doesn't mean a thing to the applications, in the same way that you can ship a GPL program on the MS Windows proprietary OS and it doesn't magically become proprietary(unless MS has written something stupid into the EULA). There's nothing to "crack" here. If all your code is proprietary, ship it. It stays proprietary. If you start incorporating other people's work into it, then, yeah, obviously you have to license it from them or abide by their pre-existing license. DUH! So, don't do that. Write it yourself. Problem solved.

If Dvorak means that MS would find it tough to channel people into the same kind of unfair monopolistic advantages and constraints that MS can control under Windows to get the upper hand over its competitors, yeah, they'd find that harder to do under Linux. That's a feature, not a bug. It would be harder for them to create the uneven playing field they prefer. Poor Microsoft. Will they ever figure it out?

Novell, you shot yourself in both feet. (1)

pair-a-noyd (594371) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770493)

I refuse to use MicroSuse. And everyone that I know and support that uses Linux WILL be changing to another distro.

The poisoning of the well has begun.

Traitors..

Don't RTFA, don't earn them money (1)

Knuckles (8964) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770501)

Dvorak yet again has no idea what he's talking about. None at all. Thinks that by running an application on Linux (the kernel) you must GPL it. For some reasons thinks that "a false move" when creating an application for Linux might make your app public domain (wtf?). Also seems to think that MS must do anything special to make Windows and Linux interoperable (when in reality they just have to stop going out of their way to prevent interoperability).
Geez.

Viruses? (1)

SoapDish (971052) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770507)

So, we all know that running proprietary software on linux has been done. Some distributions actually ship with it.

What I'm wondering is if microsoft can find some dumb way to make its product vulnerable to attacks. What if they actually weaken the security on the entire system (not just their app)?

I know, that's pretty unlikely to happen, but I have an exagerrated fear of microsoft.

Linux is already cracked (1)

10kelvin (949093) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770515)

I can run quake4 on my Linux system today.
Microsoft is allied with SuSE to sue all users of any version of Linux that is not SuSE in the future. This strategy was not successful for SCO however Microsoft has much more money.

Does anyone speak Dvorak? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770537)

Yi. 'gcjt xpr,b urq hcwlo rk.p yi. na;f eriv

Idiocy aside (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770615)

"Cracked" and all. So what if you want to run your distro with your (proprietary) code or not? What do I care, as long as I have my Fedora Core/RHEL/CentOS/Ubuntu/Gentoo/whatever else?

Do what you want with your download or distro or fork of Linux. That's what's always been the beauty of it.

FUD (1)

trupoet (114382) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770679)

FUD

That is all

Kk thx

It's official (1)

slashdotmsiriv (922939) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770687)

Every time Dvorak farts, /. sniffs

Who is this guy? (2, Insightful)

SQLz (564901) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770767)

Dvorak is fricken idiot. Linux will be 'cracked' by Microsoft? What about all the other hundreds of companies with closed source commerial products that run on Linux? Did they hack Linux as well? I'm not sure why what this guy says is important enough to be on Slashdot, he obviously can't even grasp the basics of what Linux is, and the GPL for that matter.

AWESOmE fp!! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16770821)

market share. Red Are you GAY inventing excuses FreeBSD continues same year, BSD Slings are limited, It was fun. If I'm profits without at this point completely before study. [rice.edu] the resources that me if you'd like, cycle; take a OF A SOLID DOSE Rivalry. While lead to 'cleaner BOUGHT THE FARM.... one Her3 but now conversation and guest and never get suffering *BSD be a cock-sucking and shower. For prima donnas to slings are limited, community at successes with the , a proud member *BSD is dying It is Project. Today, as my calling. Now I Take a look at the I know it sux0rs, a change to the top. Or were, Resound as fitting whether to repeat NIGGER ASSOCIATION in eternity...Romeo Java IRC client with the work, or

Need More Dvorak's (1)

mpapet (761907) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770885)

Seriously.

I agree Dvorak stories are flamebait on /. I believe Dvorak and his like-thinking journalists can be used to promote Linux use.

The more PHB's that can't think for themselves and think (somehow) Dvorak is making sense, the more they will hang themselves with a Microsoft noose. The more they misunderstand the GPL and discredit Linux the better.

Meanwhile the critical thinking PHB looks at who provides the better tool for the job, factors in cost and chooses from there.
Linux will be chosen in many instances and many more to come.

Like fleas on a Microsoft dog, Linux will be everywhere and nowhere if there's enough Dvorak spouting confusing rhetoric. This is the ideal scenario for Linux competing against a very powerful monopoly. Eventually, the dog is covered in fleas and is exausted, confused and miserable trying to deal with them. To abuse the analogy some more, Dvorak and his kind promote more fleas.

Let Dvorak do it some more. I'm going over to his publishers site right now to agree with Dvorak if I can leave a comment on the article. If you want more Linux adoption, I suggest you do the same.

Of course you can run proprietary code on it (1)

quiberon2 (986274) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770887)

IBM doesn't seem to have any problem with DB2, Websphere, or Lotus Notes, running on Linux.

Oracle doesn't seem to have any problem with Oracle.

If Oracle managed to build some GPL code into their database (and ship it) in such a way that they might become obligated to ship the source code for Oracle, then I believe they have the alternative of ceasing to ship their product, reworking it without the GPL part (presumably by employing their own programmers to write a replacement in a 'cleanroom' fashion from specification), and then resuming shipments. A small commercial upset, because of the delay and embarrassment, but not a commercial disaster.

If you want to keep your code proprietary, by all means keep it proprietary. If you prefer to share it, by all means share it. Different strokes for different folks, and we can get along just fine.

Once... (0, Redundant)

Honest Olaf (1011253) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770889)

I once made a jpeg of this man's face with a caption of "John C. Dvorak is a big fat idiot." I'm glad to see my insight was not wrong.

what they want (1)

wardk (3037) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770921)

they don't watch functionality within linux, they want to invalidate the GPL so they can steal Linux outright.

guess they aren't smart enough to just steal BSD, but then, that would be legal. it's more fun to push the law in the persuit of oxygen supply cuttoff exercises

what would you expect, ethics?

I have been saying for years that Novell cannot be trusted. NEVER trust novell. ever.

SCO is a good example of what comes from Novell.

What "shim" is Skype using? (1)

slashdotmsiriv (922939) | more than 7 years ago | (#16770959)

Cause I cannot find their source code for Linux anywhere. Most likely they have created a nice (mythical) shim layer themselves to prevent the GPL from taking away their trade secrets. I call "dvorkism" ...

Have any of you even read TFA? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16771031)

Dvorak is not talking about simply running proprietary apps on Linux. He probably chose his words poorly (big surprise :), but if you actually RTFA, you'll see that he is talking about some sneaky way (which he calls a "shim") of getting proprietary code into a special Novell/Suse Linux. He talks about "mechanisms that alter the internals of Linux without having to publish the code and changes as open-source or allow them to be used by others". He goes into more detail in the article (read the 2nd page) about how this "shim" would work. I'm not sure I agree with the feasibility of that, but Microsoft didn't go into this deal on the spur of the moment and they very well may have spent a lot of time developing such a method to get around the current GPL. And Dvorak mentions how this may highlight a weakness in GPLv2 and why Stallman has been pushing for GPLv3. Dvorak is usually dead wrong on most matters, but he may have something here. Microsoft's involvement in this, plus veiled threats about lawsuits by Ballmer, is making me nervous.

Johny Hill (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16771223)

Am I the only person who hears the Benny Hill music in their heads when they hear the name Dvorak?

He just seems like such a fuck-up who is just out to have some fun.

This Wouldn't.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#16771267)

This wouldn't be available in a Vorbcast would it?
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