back to article Microsoft has signed up to the Open Invention Network. We repeat. Microsoft has signed up to the OIN

Who would have thought it? Not content with signing with LOT Network, Microsoft has taken the next step in patent cuddling and joined the Open Invention Network. A month shy of its 14th birthday, the Open Invention Network (OIN) was obviously very happy to welcome the beast of Redmond, and 60,000 or so of its patents, into the …

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maybe Plan L from outerspace?

https://fossbytes.com/xenix-history-microsoft-unix-operating-system/

Not sure how accurate it is though I installed MS Xenix once. The SCO partner mentioned is not the same SCO as the recent troll.

Then in 1985 MS started partnership with IBM over OS/2. Later they pulled out and did MS OS/2 with Lan Manager for servers before doing first NT release, which was NT 3.1. Later MS bought in Services For Unix for NT which was later rebranded. So the current Linux subsystem option is nothing new.

Any sensible company keeps their options open.

I dumped all my remaining NT3.5x and NT4.0 technet, MSDN and MS Select resources this week.

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Re: maybe Plan L from outerspace?

"https://fossbytes.com/xenix-history-microsoft-unix-operating-system/

Not sure how accurate it is"

It seems rather muddled. The thesis is that MS dropped Xenix because IBM went for MS-DOS on PCs so they didn't need it. Given that Xenix was a server OS and MS-DOS a client that's a non-sequitur. Xenix followed by SCO Openserver, often with an application package based on Informix was a mainstay of a lot of small businesses with either green-screens or PCs as terminals. Until MS started doing server versions of Windows the two were largely complementary.

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Re: maybe Plan L from outerspace?

Until MS started doing server versions of Windows the two were largely complementary.

Yes. Meanwhile, Xenix wasn't making MS a lot of money, and before Windows NT Microsoft was invested for a number of years in OS/2. Xenix simply wasn't a priority for them. I don't think there was anything more subtle than that going on.

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This is the gotcha, it is not a fair swap, they are getting the Linux patents but not giving the Windows patents.

"Now, that's not all of Microsoft's 90,000-odd technology patents. It's keeping the ones that cover specifically Windows and other products."

In other words they're giving away their chaff for others wheat.

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Anonymous Coward

"In other words they're giving away their chaff for others wheat."

Others can also choose to be selective on which patents they include.

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The Techrights view

The Techrights view on this is here:

Techrights: Open Invention Network is a Proponent of Software Patents — Just Like Microsoft — and Microsoft Keeps Patents It Uses to Blackmail Linux Vendors

and the recent view on Microsoft joining LOT is here, too:

Techrights: Microsoft Uses LOT Network to Spread Lies and Promote Its Protection Racket

I think it is fair to say, it is not unalloyed enthusiasm.

Techrights point out that Microsoft have a history of selling patents to Non-Practising Entities, who then enforce them, and as the NPEs are not members of OIN, such patents will continue to be used in threatened and actual litigation. Also, Microsoft are not including the exFAT patents in the OIN deal.

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Here's food for thought

Has anyone thought this might be less about Microsoft being friendly and more about loosing relevance in the IT world. Some previously low tech countries have matured quite quickly and now provide a real threat to having much much bigger competitors. And these said countries have had little to no respect for IP so even though MS might have been around longer they will get gobbled up by a bigger fish in the not too distant future. By putting all these patents up as open all of the sudden stops the value of stealing IP since anyone can do it and doesn't let the IP cash cow roll in cause you ain't gonna sue anyone for infringement since it is GPL.

Think about it this way, have you ever seen a movie where the "good" guy is trying to escape a pursuit from the "bad" guys and runs over to the fire alarm and pulls it... it all of the sudden causes confusion and everyone gets up so there is less chance of standing out.... It the patent world when you open source it then it all of the sudden allows many competitors to come out and play which causes "big fish" to preoccupied them self by the many fish that lay in front of it.... and will take out the "easy catch" or the "low hanging fruit" first.

This is a long term survival strategy.... and heck if they could just sell a Windows compatible UI that sits on Linux that would be the best thing for everyone I believe... heck I would even pay for it.... as long as their "let's do it for you" crap they have been implementing over the years can be turned off if wanted, you know so you can manually check things out and fix them (if you want, don't have to but if you can you will)

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Re: Here's food for thought

"if they could just sell a Windows compatible UI that sits on Linux that would be the best thing for everyone I believe"

You believe some strange things. MS have been progressively screwing up the Windows UI for the last several years. There are plenty who wouldn't consider it the best thing at all so scrap "everyone". .

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Did Microsoft really just “Open Source all Its Patents”??

hackernoon.com: "By joining OIN, Microsoft agrees not to use any of its 60,000 patents against other OIN participants for their use or distribution of ‘Linux System’ technologies."

"Microsoft’s participation in OIN does not limit Microsoft’s ability to assert its patents against technologies outside the ‘Linux System’ definition."

"Microsoft’s participation in OIN also does not limit Microsoft’s ability to assert its patents against non-OIN participants — even for use or distribution of a ‘Linux System’ package."

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No... something is going on....

More like they will get deep integration, spin off their own linux, then pull the copyrights

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