back to article Judge spanks SCO in ancient ownership of Unix lawsuit

IBM has had a win in its long court battle with SCO over just who owns Unix and, by extension, whether Linux is an unauthorised clone. Some quick and simplified history: SCO – short for The Santa Cruz Operation – was a software company that offered a version of Unix for x86 chippery. When Linux came along in the late 90s and …

  1. MacroRodent Silver badge

    groklaw and grokthelaw

    I'm surprised the file is at groklaw.net, which PJ stopped updating over a year ago. Maybe she saw this news as important enough (in any case, there is no link to it at the front page).

    But this news and related discussion can be found at http://grokthelaw.freeforums.net/ which was set up to try to continue Groklaw, but is not affiliated with it (and has been a rather quiet place).

    1. SDoradus
      Pint

      Re: groklaw and grokthelaw

      "I'm surprised the file is at groklaw.net, which PJ stopped updating over a year ago."

      Exactly, and that was my reaction too. But if you examine the news column on the right you will notice a couple of comparatively new entries (from July!) so PJ is still around and cleaning up as old discussions get resolved. SCO is of course the oldest of these. But she hasn't broken out the red dress yet, and perhaps never will.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: groklaw and grokthelaw

        So in that case I'm assuming that she got over her whining and crying about the big bad NSA doing what they've been doing since the advent of the public internet?

    2. thames

      Re: groklaw and grokthelaw

      PJ was at one time talking about writing a book on the SCO case. I hope she does so, because she has an exceptionally clear writing style and is able to explain complex legal nonsense in a simple and understandable way.

      1. billse10

        Re: groklaw and grokthelaw

        would be good to see it, the amount of work put in to covering that case should be recognised more too. As should the sheer greed of SCO's representatives.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: groklaw and grokthelaw

        Sod that, I'll just wait for the movie...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: groklaw and grokthelaw

          Re: groklaw and grokthelaw

          Sod that, I'll just wait for the movie...

          Yeah, sure, I think Sony was going to release it...

          1. sisk Silver badge

            Re: groklaw and grokthelaw

            Yeah, I thought that to. In fact my first thought was "Didn't PJ walk away from Groklaw?"

        2. Slabfondler

          Re: groklaw and grokthelaw

          Who will be cast to play Darl?

          1. Christopher E. Stith

            Re: groklaw and grokthelaw

            Maybe they should cast Ray Wise or Viggo Mortensen. After all, they've both played the devil before (in "Reaper" on TV and in "The Prophecy", respectively). I vote for Ray Wise, because his devil was comical.

  2. Ole Juul Silver badge

    Zombix

    I remember when SCO went into bankruptcy. I was much younger then.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Zombix

      Neah, Frankenstein.

      It is has been re-animated by electric shock from Sun and MSFT in the past. I would not be surprised if it gets yet another jolt to keep it going. The stench of sour grapes around API copyright in certain parts of the Silly Valley is quite overwhelming at the moment. I would not be surprised if it gets re-animated again (it is pocket change for the usual suspect which kept it going in the past) as the basic idea here is the same. Apparently copying an include which "explains" how functions are supposed to behave as black box system is somehow supposedly a case of copyright infringment.

    2. calmeilles

      Re: Zombix

      I remember using SCO Unix: Insert disk 1 of 94.

      I was much, much younger then.

      1. Linker3000

        Re: Zombix

        Which disk have you made it to as of now?

      2. Tom 7 Silver badge

        Re: Zombix

        I have a copy of xenix or whatever - only about 7 hard blue floppies though...

        1. Tom 13

          Re: I have a copy of xenix

          IIRC that was from a different SCO which went bankrupt and stayed dead.

          Stealing the dead SCO's business name was the first sign of how evil the new SCO would be.

          1. red floyd

            Re: I have a copy of xenix

            This is correct.

            Santa Cruz (the original SCO) sold some part of its business to Caldera, and then renamed itself Tarantella.

            Caldera renamed itself as "The SCO Group" and became the evil SCOundrels we all know and hate.

            The original Santa Cruz Operation was a fun place to work at (I had friends there), and while their Unix was a bit on the old and stodgy side (SVR3), it worked well.

        2. tom dial Silver badge

          Re: Zombix

          I have a copy of IBM Xenix 1.0 that I found far better than MS-DOS for learning C programming many years ago.

          MS-DOS: dereference invalid pointer -> black hole -> hardware reset & OS reload -> fix program.

          Xenix: dereference invalid pointer -> bus error -> fix program.

          Saved me a lot of irritation and time.

      3. Rick Giles
        Linux

        Re: Zombix

        Our Unix guru set it up where we had a boot and root floppy and the reset was on (if I remember correctly) a QIC-40 tape... Might have been an 80... God help me...

  3. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

    TSG is not SCO

    Everyone and his Penguin called the Santa Cruz Operation "SCO", but its name was the Santa Cruz Operation. That 'SCO' bought the right to collect license fees for SVRx Unix (and derivatives) from Novell (who retained the copyright). They also distributed a Linux based operating system (which did not inherit source code from SVRx).

    SCO sold its Unix business to a new company and changed its name to Tarantella. The new company changed its name to The SCO Group, and (with some success) got people to call it SCO. TSG is not the Santa Cruz Operation. TSG try to claim Santa Cruz Operation's work on SVR4 code as their own, but the are not the same company, and did not buy the source code because the Santa Cruz Operation never bought it. They were supposed to collect Novell's licence fees, hand over all of Novell's money to Novell and in return Novell would hand back 5% commission.

    Novell bought SVRx from Unix Systems Laboratories. USL was created inside AT&T because AT&T were forbidden from distributing an OS because of an anti-trust ruling against them. AT&T transferred SVRx to USL who promptly sued the regents of the university of Berkeley for copyright infringement of SVRx. Berkeley Software Distribution (who are not the same as the regents of the university of Berkeley) distributed a version of Unix that was not derived from SVR4 (or its predecessors). USL did so badly in court the they paid the regents legal fees in return for the regent's silence. It turns out that Unix was originally distributed in source code form without any copyright notices. Patches were sent back to AT&T again without copyright notices or licensing agreements. Some of those patches were incorporated back into AT&T's Unix.

    So, TSG (not SGO) threatened to sue everyone and his penguin for using SVR4 code that they did not own and wasn't in Linux. Even if there was some code that TSG owned, it was released under the GPL by SCO anyway when they distributed Linux. TSG did this despite USL's failure to do substantially the same thing. They sued IBM, who are famous for their ability to blacken the sky with lawyers, and they did so when Novell told them not to (Novell had the contractual right to prevent SCO and successors from engaging in litigation related to Novell's SVRx source code).

    Now who gets the award for idiocy:

    A) Darl McBride who was in charge of TSG, and kept making false statements to the press that were immediately debunked by a horde of penguinistas.

    B) David Boies who said his law firm would do all the legal representation for a share of the profits.

    1. Ole Juul Silver badge

      Re: TSG is not SCO

      Now who gets the award for idiocy . . .

      I think everybody should get an award, just for showing up. It's been a great show! (Not too sure about the encore though.)

      1. Doctor Evil

        Re: TSG is not SCO

        I think everybody should get an award, just for showing up. It's been a great show! (Not too sure about the encore though.)

        The sequel is never as good as the original.

    2. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

      Re: TSG is not SCO @Floke

      Good summary.

      I'm not sure about the Tarentella part though.

      I thought (and Wikipedia appears to confirm this) that Tarentella was the remains of the original Santa Cruz Operation after they sold the UNIX server and services division to Caldera, and it was Caldera which renamed themselves The SCO Group.

      Tarentella ended up being bought by Sun Microsystems, and is now a division of Oracle.

      Darl McBride came into the picture, because he was the CEO of Caldera at the time Caldera bought the Santa Cruz UNIX assets. Before this, Caldera had been one of the early companies specialising in Linux distribution, which is why it was so ironic that they later started threatening to sue other Linux companies. Darl became the CEO of SCO Group when Caldera renamed itself.

      Another piece of the picture is that I am sure that HP were originally involved with the original SCO in the transfer of assets from UNIX System Laboratories, when USL was wound up (I missed a bullet there, I was offered a job at USL as a Support/Consultant/Trainer in the UK in the early '90s). This is from memory, although I really ought to see whether there is a UniGram archive somewhere.

    3. thames

      Re: TSG is not SCO

      SCOG was suing Novell because they wanted Novell to turn over the copyrights to them on the grounds that they couldn't sue world + dog without actually owning something to sue over. Novell declined, hence, one of the lawsuits.

      Some other interesting details involve Microsoft's and Sun's involvement. Microsoft quietly funnelled money to SCOG, which is where they got the money to go postal. This was at the time when Vista was late and Microsoft needed some ammunition to keep the FUD campaign going. As one example, Balmer made a speech claiming that since there were these lawsuits hanging over Linux that if any company used Linux, then that was a form of liability that wasn't in their financial statements, which in turn constituted fraud, and so the board of directors would all be going to prison. Microsoft were absolutely flogging the whole SCO dead horse for all they were worth.

      Sun bought the rights to open source their unix license to make "Open Solaris". That money also got fed into the lawsuit. When it came out that SCOG didn't own the rights that they sold to Sun, Novell went knocking on Sun's door with a few pointed questions. We don't know what the outcome of that conversation was (presumably it revolved around dollar signs).

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: TSG is not SCO

      After reading that, my head now hurts...

    5. Peter Simpson 1
      FAIL

      Re: TSG is not SCO

      Just saw an announcement that Sony has retained David Boies...

      http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/sony-attorney-david-boies-threatens-757537

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Coffee/keyboard

        Re: TSG is not SCO

        Re: Sony

        I just spit out my coffee...

    6. Stoneshop Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Re: TSG is not SCO

      Now who gets the award for idiocy:

      SCOG. They went from repeatedly shooting themselves in the foot to machinegunning their knees with gay abandon after there was nothing substantial left in the pedal department. Only lack of funds to obtain ammo withheld them from operating their groin-pointing Gatling

    7. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: TSG is not SCO

      Novell didn't just buy SysV UNIX from USL; they bought all of USL. Then Attachmate Group bought Novell, and now we've merged with Attachmate. That means Micro Focus now contains, in addition to the original Micro Focus (one of the oldest PC software firms), in no particular order:

      Borland, Novell, SUSE, USL, WordPerfect, Digital Research (of CP-M fame), NetManage, Rumba, parts of Compuware, and most of the (non-mainframe) COBOL and CORBA products

      Among other things.

      No doubt I'm biased, but I think it's kind of cool. There's a fascinating (and nostalgic) history of PC software there.

    8. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      Re: TSG is not SCO

      There was also UnixWare: initially a joint venture between USL and Novell, then sold to Santa Cruz Operation, then to Caldera along with SCO's original UNIX (SCO OpenDesktop / OpenServer). UnixWare was an SVR4 derivative for the desktop, but in my experience less user- and admin-friendly than OpenDesktop.

      So Santa Cruz Operation had three UNIX product lines during its history: Xenix, OpenDesktop, and UnixWare.

  4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    I'm not sure that SCO fell on hard times because of competition with Linux. Back in the day it was a well regarded Unix system but expensive. Had they dropped the price a little & maybe offered a freebie (as in beer) 1 to 2 user system I'm not sure Linux would even have got off the ground and they would certainly have kept a healthy slice of the server market by not playing fast and loose with backwards compatibility. With Caldera they could also have had the chance of being a major Linux player as well. AFAICR it was the new management who decided that litigation might be more profitable that caused the problems.

    As I had a few clients using SCO & find its eventual fate disappointing. Not to mention that, with systemd & friends turning Linux into a non-Unix-alike system, a healthy SCO would be just what a good many sysadmins need right now.

    1. Hans 1 Silver badge

      >Not to mention that, with systemd & friends turning Linux into a non-Unix-alike system, a healthy SCO would be just what a good many sysadmins need right now.

      Any of the BSD's, I prefer FreeBSD.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Any of the BSD's, I prefer FreeBSD

        Yes, as time allows I'm looking at it. I think that's where I'll be going.

    2. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

      Unixware

      I often wonder whether it would be possible to resurrect Unixware. This is the closest thing to a mainstream UNIX, and I would love to see a real genetic UNIX available again. But I think Linux has filled the gap where Unixware could exist.

      1. Roo
        Windows

        Re: Unixware

        "I often wonder whether it would be possible to resurrect Unixware."

        That is one of those things that may well be possible but is also dangerous, painful and ultimately unrewarding - I'd put it in the same category as going quail hunting with Dick Cheney. It looks as though you can still buy it, although I really struggle to find any upside to purchasing a neglected zombie cash cow.

        "I would love to see a real genetic UNIX available again"

        Depends on your idea of real I guess... I count the *BSDs as being more real UNIX than the various commercial hacks of SVR4 - but that is because I cut my teeth on SunOS and was then savaged by rabid Solaris boxes. Those boxes running early cuts of Solaris were so unreliable, and so badly set up that I concluded that they weren't running a UNIX.

        Those scars linger on - as a result I still avoid SVR4 when given an option. :)

        1. Down not across

          Re: Unixware

          Depends on your idea of real I guess... I count the *BSDs as being more real UNIX than the various commercial hacks of SVR4 - but that is because I cut my teeth on SunOS and was then savaged by rabid Solaris boxes. Those boxes running early cuts of Solaris were so unreliable, and so badly set up that I concluded that they weren't running a UNIX.

          Hear hear. I stuck to 4.1.3 for as long as it was possible. Early Solaris 2 (or SunOS 5.x as they called it. Heretics!) was incredibly buggy. First vaguely usable version was 2.5 (by which time it was also becoming difficult to be refusenik since Sun was starting to drop support for SunOS 4 for the newer hardware).

          Those scars linger on - as a result I still avoid SVR4 when given an option. :)

          Those scars never heal...

        2. Peter Gathercole Silver badge

          Re: Unixware

          I was thinking more along the lines of buying the rights and open-sourcing it. Probably can't happen as SCOG never controlled the ownership of the rights, and I guess that Attachmate will allocate some value to them.

          As I cut my teeth on Bell Labs. version/edition 6 and 7, BSD was never 'true' UNIX to me. And although it ultimately failed, the AT&T lawsuit against the Regents of the University of California over proprietary code meant that the current BSD releases are only really related to 'true' UNIX (what I tend to call Genetic UNIX) by old code (v7 and before) and some APIs.

          The current BSDs cannot even use the term UNIX because (rightly or wrongly) that trademark has to be licensed and any OS wanting to use the term certified by the Open Group against a verification suite, one which *BSD* will probably fail.

          In some senses, SunOS came back into the fold with SunOS 4.01 which refactored it's code base around SVR4.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Unixware

        >> Peter Gathercole

        Why not try an evolution of Unix design concept's http://ninetimes.cat-v.org/

        I hear it was being developed in Brazil (Plan-B) and then later on it was being Developed inhouse by some of Google's engineers although it's not strictly Googles to claim as the License is still owned by Lucent and not Alcatel... It's always nice to know what all the spies have got there filthy little eye's on... Pity SCO can't claim any copyrot to it at all... Bye Microsoft - Bye RedHat .. see ya'all later!

    3. thames

      As mentioned by others, the company was really Caldera Linux (later to rename themselves "The SCO Group"), who were one of the original business LInux distros. They bought SCO's unix division with the intention of using SCO's sales channels to sell Linux to an existing customer base. This was during the dot-com boom, when Linux related shares went sky high. Just prior to that, SCO had been looking at buying a Linux distro company to follow that strategy themselves, but they waited too long and missed their opportunity before the share prices went against them.

      In general it was a very good plan. However, Caldera's customer service was not exactly the best. You can get away with that in the proprietary world, but in the Linux market there's too much competition and customers can switch suppliers too easily (which is why customers like Linux). The "sue world + dog strategy" came about when McBride was brought in.

      SCO (the real SCO, not SCOG) had a joint venture with IBM to develop a common Unix system which would cover the market from small to large systems. If I recall correctly, it was called project Monterey (or something like that). IBM was supposed to work on the large systems, while SCO was supposed to provide the x86 expertise.

      However, when SCO sold their unix division to Caldera and became Tarantella, IBM looked at the way the market was going and exercised their right to pull out of the partnership. The original partnership agreement let them do that if there was a change of control in SCO. IBM realized at that point that Linux was going to take over the market and that the proprietary unixes were doomed, at least on commodity hardware. IBM then put their sales efforts behind promoting Linux on IBM hardware and backed by IBM services. Linux gave customers what they had always wanted from unix but never really had - a truly vendor independent operating system. The proprietary unix market was fragmented, while using Microsoft Windows NT was just trading one proprietary vendor for another.

      One of the several SCOG lawsuits against IBM was relating to the termination of project Monterey. It's hard to say if there is anything to be found there, but if there is, it hasn't shown up so far.

      SCOG's copyright based lawsuits suffered from not being able to show any basis for their claims. There was code copied the other way, which made for some amusing times when someone noticed his code being claimed by SCO as one of their crown jewels.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Didn't you need to recompile the kernel just to change IP address though?

  5. CAPS LOCK Silver badge

    As far as the history of thi fiasco goes, one name is missing...

    Microsoft financed a lot of this misery, to spread FUD. Never forget how low Microsoft will go to undermine its competitors.

  6. jake Silver badge

    Good gawd/ess.

    Are the SCO Mk2 lawyers STILL trying to win?

    How much money have they thrown away to date?

    One clinical sign of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, each time expecting a different result ... Just sayin'

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Happy

      Re: Good gawd/ess.

      One clinical sign of lawyerdom is doing the same thing over and over (and over) again, each time expecting any old result, so long as you keep on getting paid... Just sayin'

      jake,

      I hope you don't mind it I do a little editing to improve your text...

    2. Tom 13

      Re: Good gawd/ess.

      Well, from the lawyers' point of view, the money hasn't been wasted it has been properly pocketed. And being able to pocket money is always a good ending. Right?

      1. Paul Shirley

        Re: Good gawd/ess.

        From the SCO lawyers POV the case was a catastrophe. Early on BS&F were so dazzled by the amount SCO told the world it was going to win and so confident the world would pay them to go away at worst, they took a share of the case. Later they escaped and that became a fixed cap on chargeable costs, however long the case took.

        Last time I saw a figure they were already estimating a $30mil loss. That was several years ago and the case was almost at a standstill by then so it wasn't likely to get much worse. But it's a big loss and along with the shockingly unprofessional work they did, it's done their reputation no good.

        The IBM/Novel etc. lawyers did well though ;)

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Good gawd/ess.

      They're lawyers... maybe they aren't insane and expecting a different result, they're just ringing up billable hours

  7. choleric

    New Linux distribution suggestion from Novell

    This is getting tired. Maybe they should release a new distribution called SCO's Not (got) Unix Zombie Edition -> SNUZE?

  8. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge
    Coat

    WHEN WILL THIS END??????

    Like Reg Shoe I have nothing against zombies, but like him I hate it when they lurch and groan, and lurching and groaning is what the SCO group are doing.

    ...

    I am getting my coat. The one with Night Watch in the pocket please

  9. Swarthy Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Who'd'a thunk it

    It seems that taking off and nuking the site from orbit is the only way to be sure.

    1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

      Re: Who'd'a thunk it

      Are you sure? I always thought that cockroaches were expected to survive nuclear armageddon, and replace us?

  10. tony2heads
    Mushroom

    time to die

    I thought that this nonsense was long dead and buried

    Time for the silver bullet, stake through the heart, beheading and burning with fire.

    Maybe even nuke from orbit.

    1. billse10

      Re: time to die

      "maybe even".

      Or "as well as", just in case?

    2. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge
      Linux

      Re: time to die

      You cannot kill SCO! Darl is... [cue music] ... The McBride of Dracula! Mwahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!

  11. Quentin North

    Xenix

    Wasn't Xenix in the mix here somewhere? I think Microsoft produced that about 1980 and this was some of the basis of the MS FUD campaign around SCO Unix and Linux.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Xenix

      Both SCO and MS had a Xenix offering - MS Xenix was the bane of my life for a long time where as the SCO one usually installed first time and worked.

      As others have said, I was much younger then

    2. Tom 13

      Re: Xenix

      Only via name confusion between new SCO and old SCO.

    3. jake Silver badge

      @Quentin North (was: Re: Xenix)

      Xenix was actually licensed by Microsoft from AT&T in the late 1970s. From what I remember it was the standard PDP11 Version 7 Unix source code, and distributed un-modified by Microsoft. MS was just the middle-man, getting into an aspect of the business that MaBell wasn't interested in. However, MaBell decided to "jealously guard"[0] the UNIX[tm], thus the Xenix name.

      SCO ported it to the IBM PC's 8086/8088 architecture in roughly 1983. Most of us yawned ... although looking back, it was a pretty good hack by SCO[1]!

      Before SCO's port was released, there was a TRS-68000 version, a Zilog Z8001 port, and an Altos 8086 version (not necessarily in that order, my mind is concatenating time). Microsoft didn't write any of them, rather the third-party companies in question did the coding. Microsoft was just the go-between for MaBell, who didn't want to get into that side of the business.

      Seems to me I once saw an Apple Lisa running Xenix, not certain who did that port. Can anyone jog my memory?

      [0] It's a technical term. Look it up.

      [1] Not the same SCO as in the original article ... not by a long stretch.

  12. Anonymous Blowhard

    Roll on cryonics

    Warning to would-be corpsicles: Don't specify "Revive after SCO lawsuit is over" in your will.

  13. Lars Silver badge
    Linux

    Thanks Groklaw

    Thanks Pamela Jones.

    I think fairly few, even among those who has followed this mad story from the beginning, can remember every detail all that well. As I remember there was a report by some consultant who claimed IBM would gladly pay SCO (I will call it SCO here) one billion dollar for the "wrong doings" they had done towards SCO. That report was on the internet then. As for the "wrong doings" they where based on what Earl McBride wanted to believe. No wonder he and David Boies too, smelt cheap money around the corner. And of course Microsoft smelt something too.

    At it's wildest SCO claimed there was one million copied instructions in Linux. (The evidence then happened to disappear in a briefcase in Iceland.)

    To some extent I can understand this as there was a lot of people who found it hard to understand how a bunch of kids could come up with something as advanced a linux so quickly. Just a PAC-MAN system according to Gates, if I remember right. In comments around the globe then you would find stuff like - "I knew it, I knew it, it's all copied".

    One thing I think is obvious in a case like this is that a jury system is not good at all. A "lotto" system that easily gives you a 50/50 chance even if you are wrong. How can one demand that a jury could understand any of this. No wonder McBride wanted to take the case in front of a jury all the time.

    Pamela Jones ability to dig into it was fenomenal.

    As for SCO Unix, I had tens of customers running our software and it was quite OK. Cheaper than HP-UX, Aix and Solaris but also slower as it ran on standard PC hardware. The only problem I can remember now is that it run out of semaphores every now and then, not a big problem as such. In fact, I found more bugs in HP-UX.

    I mention this as I still feel sorry for the honest and good guys working with SCO Unix and who probably lost their jobs due to a greedy dumb guy like Darl McBride who managed to destroy the company, for ever, as I hope to day.

  14. Frankee Llonnygog

    Good god, what is that on your shoe?

    Oh, it's SCO

  15. Brian Souder 1

    Just Buy The Bankrupt Company

    Why don't IBM and Novell just buy up the bankrupt SCO and put an end to this.

    1. sandman

      Re: Just Buy The Bankrupt Company

      Don't be silly, it'd deprive starving lawyers of money and us of endless entertainment. Think of it as a soap opera (albeit one with a plot copied from Groundhog Day).

  16. Matt Bryant Silver badge

    Summary of of how the Big Hitters played.

    This is how I saw it on the ground:

    Microsoft - did have a directly-competing x86 OS (Windows), so took full advantage of the affair to FUD Linux; definitely slipped SCO some cash with "evil" intent; and provided their sales with FUD material to attack Linux (I sat through one from an MS partner). TBH, what else did you expect?

    SUN - took advantage of the affair to FUD Linux in an attempt to defend their proprietary UNIX; paid SCO up front for a license early on when it was already clear the SCO threat was hot air; and sent out their salesmen with a FUD packet to attack Linux with, despite prior claims of "penguin love" (I sat through one specific SCO-Linux FUD session from a SUN reseller). Upset some old timers that though SUN should have been defending Linux more, alienated the Linux community.

    IBM - took it on the nose and sent their flying-monkeys/lawyers into battle (partially with the intent of defending their profit stream from Linux on mainframe), despite having their own proprietary UNIX and large MS-on-IBM revenue streams; and provided their partners with anti-FUD material (I had a briefing directly from IBM). Won the respect of the Linux community.

    hp - despite having their own proprietary UNIX revenues to protect, and despite being the number one vendor for SCO UNIX servers, hp told SCO were to go when asked to buy a license; despite being the number one MS server vendor, did not issue a Linux FUD pack for their MS salesbods, but did supply material to resellers to de-FUD the SCO issue in Linux sales; issued a public statement saying they would indemnify hp customers using Linux, nullifying SCO's legal threat; and doubled down on their relationship with Linux vendors (I sat through joint hp-RedHat and hp-SuSE briefings on the matter). Surprisingly, did not make as much publicity noise over their rejection of the SCO case as IBM, but then that is hp's "cold-dead-fish" marketing to a T.

  17. sisk Silver badge

    Ok, courts, Novel, and IBM, please pay attention:

    Aim. For. The. Head.

  18. Adrian Midgley 1

    Presumably Mr mcbride has previously

    run a company doing useful things for a profit?

    1. Ole Juul Silver badge

      Re: Presumably Mr mcbride has previously

      Presumably Mr mcbride has previously run a company doing useful things for a profit?

      I think he made out OK. Whether you think that is useful or not would probably depend on whether you're Mr. McBride or not.

  19. ecofeco Silver badge

    Horse

    Beat. Dead.

  20. kainp121

    This law suit is like a nasty case of the clap. The kind that keeps on coming back and makes penicillin run scared.

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