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SCO Drops Linux, Says Current Vendors May Be Liable

timothy posted more than 11 years ago | from the so-they-read-the-gpl dept.

Linux Business 1105

Hank Scorpio writes "Well, SCO is at it again. I just received an email from their Developer Partner Program stating that not only are they suspending all future sales of their own Linux product (due to the alleged intellectual property violations), but they are also beginning to send out this letter to all existing commercial users of Linux, informing them that they may be liable for using Linux, a supposed infringing product. They mentioned that they will begin using tactics like those of the RIAA in taking action against end-users of Linux. This seems like it will be about as successful as the whole GIF ordeal a few years back. Where is UNISYS today? Is SCO litigating itself into irrelevance?"

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Mirror for the letter (5, Informative)

darrad (216734) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958136)

Here is a mirror location for the letter. Click [bangroot.com]

Re:Mirror for the letter (-1, Offtopic)

frodo from middle ea (602941) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958272)

You did it my friend.
FP, and +3 informative and a mirror link, all in one post. I had almost given up hopes of seeing such FP on slashdot.
Thank you ...

Re:Mirror for the letter (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958319)

Free Tommy Chong!

Re:Mirror for the letter (-1)

corniche (207397) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958286)


my name is bob
and i have a big nob
its not the same
after i wanked again

i used to be cool
and wank over the 'dot
but now im a fool

because my nob is broken!!!

i had a wank, and a little spank
but now my cum
tastes of malda's bum

contributions to the 2nd verse welcome

Re:Mirror for the letter (2, Funny)

ptomblin (1378) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958337)

Why mirror it? It's not like Slashdotting SCO would be a *bad* thing, would it?

Yeah, I can see how far this will go... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958140)

This will go no where, a waste of time...

Excuse the ignorance... (1, Insightful)

tomstdenis (446163) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958141)

but what part did SCO take in writing linux?

As I understand it Linux was written by entirely by Linus originally. The OS uses the command set of unix but is not a copy of it....


Re:Excuse the ignorance... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958203)

Linus didn't write the whole thing. It's an open source project with lots of contributers.

The big question, is when will SCO tell us what they think is in violation. I read the last interview here with an SCO PR dude and he avoided being clear if it was copyright or patent. I only assume it's not trademark, because they would be require to say what the think is a violation there.

If there is a real violation, SCO should fscking say what it is or go the fsck away! I hope the stock price falls and they all go broke.

Re:Excuse the ignorance... (5, Insightful)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958215)

They didnt write it.

They claim that enough of the SysV code in linux was cut n' paste of their code.

Frankly, I think they could be right, and the zealots would be wise not to dismiss everything SCO says and does as stupidity.

I doubt they'll collect any damages. But they'll succeed in making linux look like a grey-market stolen piece of software and drive corporate adoption of it back 10 years.

So why did they "suddenly discover" this? (4, Interesting)

TheConfusedOne (442158) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958281)

SCO's been working with Linux, they joined the United Linux group and all.

Also, the code for the various parts of Linux have been available for quite a long time. Why this "sudden discovery" of IP problems? Obviously this isn't something that just appeared with the latest versions of the various distros...

Finally, if the stolen code is so bloody obvious then why not show even one example of where there is direct copying. This wouldn't affect their legal strategy one bit (despite claims to the otherwise) and would grant them so much more credibility.

As it stands it still seems like SCO's jumping up and down and shouting "BUY ME NOW!!!! PLEASE!!!!!!!"

Re:Excuse the ignorance... (5, Insightful)

u-235-sentinel (594077) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958320)

I'm still waiting for SCO to provide ANY information as to why they feel their IP has been infringed.

To date they have used FUD as ruthlessly as Microsoft in the past. I wonder if they are not on the Micro$oft payroll considering their tactics.

Finally, I'm curious why they feel the end user of any Linux product "could" be legally responsible for anything. I downloaded a product used worldwide and has GPL licensing all over it. If we've broken the law then they are responsible to enlighten us.

Maybe someone should tell them Linus wrote the kernal. Or we could sit back and watch them flounder before death takes them.

FYI... I don't dismiss everything they say as stupidity. Occasionally they say something amusing and I'd mod it up to +1 Funny :-)

Re:Excuse the ignorance... (4, Insightful)

realdpk (116490) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958332)

Who knows if they're right? They've refused to offer up the evidence. I think it's fair for the "zealots" to dismiss what they say until they see evidence, especially since this conflict has been ongoing for months now. How many times can you hear that SCO says you're infringing if they don't give you any evidence whatsoever before you ignore 'em?

I wish /. would stop giving them the free press over it, but I know it's in their right, and I can freely ignore it too. (At least I know that my replying to this won't enhance their coverage, as I'm just a comment in the mass.)

Re:Excuse the ignorance... (1)

Sloppy (14984) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958259)

SCO alleges that someone at IBM, who had access to System V's source code, copied some of that code in a contribution to Linux.

They have not yet explained exactly what code that is. [deadpan]This lack of explanation has various consequences.[/deadpan]

Re:Excuse the ignorance... (5, Informative)

mugnyte (203225) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958275)

I may be just as ignorant, but my understanding is that:

UNIX the commercial product was sold by ATT to SCO (or its precursor). SCO then licensed this source code to IBM for the development of their own products (AIX?).

The charges then alledge that IBM contributed to the Linux product by (directly or indirectly) submitting code additions to the OSS project before its first release.

SCO maintains that the code, if checked line by line, matches their original design and sometimes syntax. They claim that only IBM could have perpetrated such a thing, and that designing some of the algorithms was beyond the OSS project's stand-alone capability without IBM's help.

By showing that Linux is indeed a viable alternative to SCO UNIX, and that they are losing money based on the commercial installation base of Linux, they can claim that either IBM (1) pay them for the infringement or (2) a judge deem all Linux distro must license from SCO, or both.

To them, IBM didn't want to pay the license fees any more, so IBM starts to sell Linux as their *Nix solution, not the SCO-compile. This locks SCO out from at least IBM's fat check to them. This makes them unhappy. SCO claim foul play.

these are the facts as i understand them, but i write this to ask for clarification from everyone.


Just how do they plan to find commercial customers (2)

Samir Gupta (623651) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958142)

It's not like there's a single company Linux Inc. or something with a single database or something.

Unisys... (5, Funny)

doppleganger871 (303020) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958145)

...is fixing Dell comptuers now...

They're at our place about twice a month or more.

Re:Unisys... (1)

sinergy (88242) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958202)

Unisys used to be good, up until the big "The Power of Two" thing. A shame.

Re:Unisys... (2, Informative)

Amazing Quantum Man (458715) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958265)

Unisys didn't exist until "The Power of Two" thing.

Prior to that, it was Burroughs and Sperry-Univac. The "Power of Two" campaign was to promote the merged company, renamed Unisys.

w00t! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958151)

It is not the premiere comment! I make flatuence in your general direction! Your mother was a hamster, and your father like stinks like elderberries! YOU FAIL IT!

Gentoo Zealot Translator ahoy! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958152)

Official Gentoo-Linux-Zealot translator-o-matic

Gentoo Linux is an interesting new distribution with some great features. Unfortunately, it has attracted a large number of clueless wannabes and leprotards who absolutely MUST advocate Gentoo at every opportunity. Let's look at the language of these zealots, and find out what it really means...

"Gentoo makes me so much more productive."
"Although I can't use the box at the moment because it's compiling something, as it will be for the next five days, it gives me more time to check out the latest USE flags and potentially unstable optimisation settings."

"Gentoo is more in the spirit of open source!"
"Apart from Hello World in Pascal at school, I've never written a single program in my life or contributed to an open source project, yet staring at endless streams of GCC output whizzing by somehow helps me contribute to international freedom."

"I use Gentoo because it's more like the BSDs."
"Last month I tried to install FreeBSD on a well-supported machine, but the text-based installer scared me off. I've never used a BSD, but the guys on Slashdot say that it's l33t though, so surely I must be for using Gentoo."

"Heh, my system is soooo much faster after installing Gentoo."
"I've spent hours recompiling Fetchmail, X-Chat, gEdit and thousands of other programs which spend 99% of their time waiting for user input. Even though only the kernel and glibc make a significant difference with optimisations, and RPMs and .debs can be rebuilt with a handful of commands (AND Red Hat supplies i686 kernel and glibc packages), my box MUST be faster. It's nothing to do with the fact that I've disabled all startup services and I'm running BlackBox instead of GNOME or KDE."

"...my Gentoo Linux workstation..."
"...my overclocked AMD eMachines box from PC World, and apart from the third-grade made-to-break components and dodgy fan..."

"You Red Hat guys must get sick of dependency hell..."
"I'm too stupid to understand that circular dependencies can be resolved by specifying BOTH .rpms together on the command line, and that problems hardly ever occur if one uses proper Red Hat packages instead of mixing SuSE, Mandrake and Joe's Linux packages together (which the system wasn't designed for)."

"All the other distros are soooo out of date."
"Constantly upgrading to the latest bleeding-edge untested software makes me more productive. Never mind the extensive testing and patching that Debian and Red Hat perform on their packages; I've just emerged the latest GNOME beta snapshot and compiled with -O9 -fomit-instructions, and it only crashes once every few hours."

"Let's face it, Gentoo is the future."
"OK, so no serious business is going to even consider Gentoo in the near future, and even with proper support and QA in place, it'll still eat up far too much of a company's valuable time. But this guy I met on #animepr0n is now using it, so it must be growing!"


I have one thing to say to this, (5, Funny)

nate nice (672391) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958154)

LOL! You'll have pry my Linux from my cold, dead harddrive fucker.

Re:I have one thing to say to this, (5, Funny)

NaugaHunter (639364) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958228)

Umm... is having a cold, dead harddrive fucker holding onto your Linux some form of Geek necrophilia that I really don't want to know anything about?

It's come to the edge of the cliff... (5, Insightful)

tjwhaynes (114792) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958163)

So Linux vs SCO has reached the edge of the cliff. SCO stumbles around, looking for something to grab hold of. It yells in fear. It screams in terror. It hopes, desperately, that someone will either weaken it's opponent or will throw SCO a lifeline. SCO's foot slips out over the edge of the abyss...

... tune in at the Court to find out if SCO takes the fall. There are lots of people watching. If SCO falls, Linux will emerge from this with a lot a FUD put by the side as a very public failure to sue Linux out of existance fails.


Toby Haynes

Re:It's come to the edge of the cliff... (4, Insightful)

Jason Earl (1894) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958222)

The real irony is that SCO isn't really SCO at all. What we currently call "SCO" is nothing more than Caldera, the company that ran their Linux IPO to enough cash to buy out SCO's UNIX holdings.

scumsucking bastards... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958166)

give me a break

"All Linux users"? Including Caldera users? (5, Insightful)

whoever57 (658626) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958168)

So, if I understand this correctly, they are sending out a letter, to Caldera's customers, telling them that they have are using a product that violates Caldera's intellectual property rights? Is there a possible suit for fraud there, as they appear to be revoking whatever licenses they gave when they sold Caldera Linux?

Re:Asking the burglar to guard the house (1)

Amiga Trombone (592952) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958324)

So, if I understand this correctly, they are sending out a letter, to Caldera's customers, telling them that they have are using a product that violates Caldera's intellectual property rights?

I doubt it will be just Caldera users. They'll probably hit users of other distros as well.

Then they'll probably have the crust to send out another one of those obnoxious letters suggesting they'll be able to avoid legal complications if they switch to SCO Unixware.

They tried something like that a few years ago. Didn't work then, either.

let's migrate! (0, Funny)

Roadmaster (96317) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958169)

OK, so here's the incentive we've all been waiting for, we should all migrate to BSD now. I swear by OpenBSD :)

it's meant to be funny.

Re:let's migrate! (1)

S. Baldrick (565691) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958285)

Theo DeRaadts' personality infringes on patents held by RMS.

Re:let's migrate! (2, Funny)

frodo from middle ea (602941) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958316)

it's meant to be funny.
thanks , i almost missed the joke.

Where? (2, Insightful)

NotTheAntiChrist (119853) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958170)

Has it been revealed to the world yet exactly which code is in question? I know they were saving this for the trial with IBM, but I imagine as soon as we know it wont take very long to just chop those parts out (assuming its true) and rebuild.
And what, exactly, happened to their statement that they weren't going after Redhat or Joe Linuxuser, but instead just IBM?

This process is designed..... (5, Funny)

Vermifax (3687) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958172)

"Commercial software is built by carefully selected and screened teams of programmers working to build proprietary, secure software. This process is designed to monitor the security and ownership of intellectual property rights associated with the code. "

Wait a minute. Someone designed the process by which commecrial software is built. Why hasn't someone patented it yet?

Re:This process is designed..... (5, Funny)

irving47 (73147) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958252)

Quiet, you fool! Jeff Bezos might be reading this!

Best thing that could happen for Microsoft (5, Insightful)

doublem (118724) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958175)

Great. SCO is giving Microsoft the best anti Linux ammo it could hope for.

This is a disaster. Balmer and Gates will trot this out as a major drawback to Open Source. IT is, if true, the living proof of the Intellectual Property issues hey claim for Open Source.

SCO is hurting Linux in the long run. It doesn't matter if this is the last gasp of a dying company. It's ample ammunition for anyone who hates Linux and wants to argue against it.

I can guarantee that we'll be hearing about Linux being riddled with IP violations for years to come, even if this is the one and only example to ever come to light.

Re:Best thing that could happen for Microsoft (3, Interesting)

Realistic_Dragon (655151) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958255)

"Great. SCO is giving Microsoft the best anti Linux ammo it could hope for."

Only in the short term - in the long term it'll permanently dispell the SCO/UNIX/Licensing FUD that MS keep pushing so hard.

Given the speed that the courts move, it should all be worked out just around the time of the release of Longhorn - giving Linux a clean bill of health just in time to get in the way of Windows 2005.

Re:Best thing that could happen for Microsoft (1)

Blakes 7 (1957) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958270)

I seriously doubt that MS hasn't thought of this before. It's rather obvious, if you think about it. SCO's case is stupid and IBM will probably crush them like the bugs they are.

Re:Best thing that could happen for Microsoft (1)

criquet (120814) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958317)

Personally, I suspect Microsoft is behind this. Do we know who SCO's lawyers are?

MS investment in SCO or vice versa (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958315)

Is it possible that MS has invested in SCO and is thereby forcing their hand?

Or is it possible that MS has sold/given MS stock to SCO officers with the same intent?

I'm not alleging conspiracy - just wondering....

Hell i dropped them long ago (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958177)

When still 'caldera' they fell so far behind as to be un-useable.. What started as a consistent business distro soon dwindled into oblivion..

And to think i used to support these bastards.. both in Time/effort to promote them, and $ for licences...

I am the great zoooooo!!!!!! (-1)

cmdr_shithead (527909) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958178)

ALL WIIL Gk jfgab9o
fg ryuf t t op

excuse me the micror heuiwo jvtyuiod tiKTUY K ifr fffghjfhghgjhjfhvri76

And good noigbt!!!!!

Good thing (2, Funny)

moehoward (668736) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958182)

they are punishing themselves before they sue themselves. Maybe they sent themselves a cease and desist order and they took it seriously. I think they realized they had enough legal issues going on and they didn't need another one from themselves. I hope the Smoking Gun gets ahold of a copy of the cease and desist. Then, we can get the real inside story.

They are setting an example. Of course, that example is "stupidity". But you have to give them credit for trying.

In other news, Rambus merged with SCO to form the largest legal team in the universe(s). Cease and desist letters were sent to every inhabitant of Earth as a precautionary measure.

Going out Kick'n & Scream'n (5, Funny)

SpaceLifeForm (228190) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958186)

SCO UNIX systems continue to sell well - including an increase in OpenServer sales over the previous quarter.

So SCO sold one this quarter?

"Is SCO litigating itself into irrelevance?" (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958187)

I thought that SCO was already irrelevant. :)

SuperNova (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958188)


Like SCO plans to go out with a bang...

I smell .... (0, Troll)

(54)T-Dub (642521) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958189)

... a BSD vs Linux war brewing

Re:I smell .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958261)

That's just the BSD users who refuse to shower daily.

So... (2, Funny)

Glock27 (446276) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958190)

Anyone ready for that "SCO Headquarters Shootout" Quake mod? =)

Truthfully, this will go exactly nowhere - even if IBM has to buy SCO.

Re:So... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958308)

No. You are wrong. It will go somewhere. I'm sure it already has. MS's marketing machine will use this to their advantage.
As has been said before, even if SCO's claims are baseless, this WILL hurt Linux and I would believe GNU in the long run. It will hurt all F/OSS.

What about SCO Linux customers? (4, Interesting)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958193)

Where do people stand if they bought SCO Linux? This has got to be the most interesting position ever, even if it doesnt turn out to hold water.

Picture this: SCO warning customers that they may be liable, can those customers sue/claim compensation from the company that sold them the infringing product? Isnt this comparable to SCO sueing themselves?

Whatever the outcome, people are going to feel this for years to come.

Re:What about SCO Linux customers? (4, Funny)

Esion Modnar (632431) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958313)

Where do people stand if they bought SCO Linux?

Talk about falling on your own sword. Imagine suing your customers for buying one of your products.

Is there a Darwin Awards just for really fatally boneheaded corporate maneuvers?

Each of these SCO executives should be slapped in the face with a wet fish.

My response would be: (0, Flamebait)

XO (250276) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958196)

If I received a letter such as this, I would respond as such:

Dear Darl McBride,

Suck my balls, and lick my ass.


..FUD.. (1)

scsirob (246572) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958198)

SCO starts to sound like Microsoft, but then without the backing of billions of $$$.. This letter is clear FUD. What on earth does SCO think it will accomplish with all this?!?

The answer is there! (5, Funny)

fireboy1919 (257783) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958200)

I don't know about the rest of you, but when I got here all I saw was a large blue


right under the question, "is SCO litigating itself into irrelevance?"

(It's actually part of an Intel ad, but hey...it's a good magic-8 ball to me).

This company reminds me of this article [theonion.com] . What makes them think they have enough clout to even attempt this? They're going to bully IBM?

What did happen to Unisys? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958201)

Can anyone elaborate about what happened to Unisys and GIF's, I never did find out how that ended (or if it did).

Ideal Situation to "Switch" to the *BSD family (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958206)

The press needs to now that Linux is DEAD, and *BSD is the SOLUTION

No more confusion about Linux, GNU/Linux, whatever.

*BSD rocks and IS ALIVE among all of us

Re:Ideal Situation to "Switch" to the *BSD family (1)

Grrreat (584733) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958301)

Whose to say that they wouldn't say that BSD is violating their IP aswell.

It all boils down to this.. (1)

malice95 (40013) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958210)

Sco is run by a bunch of total morons who will
be out of work within a year. They dont deserve our business or even our attention. Ignore the child trowing a tantrum in the corner.

It's the beggining of the end (1)

psyco484 (555249) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958213)

...for SCO's credibility. Attacking Linux users is such a horrible strategy for SCO. This is entirely different from the RIAA and MPAA claims. End users are not at fault if there is even any truth to SCO's claims. Attacking them is probably a suicidal strategy. I honestly can't imagine where they plan to go with this, but it really is entertaining to see a menacing company dig itself deeper and deeper.

Need Banner (5, Funny)

harlows_monkeys (106428) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958214)

OK, someone with gimp skills, please design a banner we can put on our web sites to tell SCO what we think.

My suggestion: A penguin on the left, with Bender doing a lean-in from the right, saying "SCO can bite my shiny metal ass".

The stolen code (5, Funny)

Compenguin (175952) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958218)

Here is the stolen sourcecode in question:

arch/cris/kernel/traps.c:53: stack++;
arch/cris/kernel/traps.c:126: stack++;
arch/i386/kernel/setup.c:2327: k++;

They already shipped it. (2, Interesting)

landley (9786) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958219)

They're trying to take back previous license terms, and make a retroactive change. "You may be liable for using the code we sold you."

I realise that the ~$150 million SCO got from microsoft three years ago (after purchasing DR-DOS just so they could sue a recent antitrust-convicted abusive monopolist) has now run out, and at the rate they burn through cash they'll be out of money soon. But just because they managed to get a big windfall from Microsoft doesn't mean they'll get a big windfall from IBM next time they need money...

IBM is going to have a ball with this...


Is Darl McBride gay? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958220)

Does anyone have any explicit photographs of Darl McBride?

Anything gay would be most helpful. If you have gay pix of Darl McBride, please post them or the urls.

Prove it. (2, Interesting)

egburr (141740) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958221)

Don't they at least have to show some proof that Linux is infringing? All their letter says is "we believe" Linux is infringing, over and over again. Shouldn't they at least wait for their suit against IBM to be completed before sending out such an ambiguous threat?

MY NAME IS BOB (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958225)

and i have a big nob
its not the same
after i wanked again

i used to be cool
and wank over the 'dot
but now im a fool

because my nob is broken!!!

i had a wank, and a little spank
but now my cum
tastes of malda's bum.

SCO can't drop the BSD babe! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958229)

How can BSD [freebsd.org] be dying when it has a mascot [freebsd.org] like this?! Linux needs to get its act together if it's going to compete with the kind of hot chicks [hope-2000.org] and gorgeous babes [hope-2000.org] that BSD has to offer!

You just can't take Linux [redhat.com] seriously when its fronted by losers [nylug.org] like these. You Linux groupies need to find some sexy girls like her [hope-2000.org] ! I mean just look at this girl [madchat.org] ! Doesn't she [madchat.org] make you hard? I know this little hottie [madchat.org] floats my boat! This guy looks like he is about to cream his pants standing next to such a fox [spilth.org] . As you can see, no man can resist this sexy [spilth.org] little cock teaser [spilth.org] . Even this old bearded Unix guru is apparently unable to take his eyes off her [spilth.org] !

Join the campaign for more cute [madchat.org] open source babes [madchat.org] today!

Canopy Group (1)

All Names Have Been (629775) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958231)

The Canopy Group companies (with the exception of Novell) have made more money suing others over IP than they have ever made selling product (witness the DR-DOS lawsuit.) They are just continuing a successful (for them) business model.

That being said, screw SCO.

could they use more pointless misqoutes? (3, Interesting)

naph (590672) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958234)

their quotes page [sco.com] just seems ridiculous. are these quotes meant to back up their case that linux is stealing from them?

Like the RIAA? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958237)

Similar to analogous efforts underway in the music industry, we are prepared to take all actions necessary to stop the ongoing violation of our intellectual property or other rights.

I can see it now. Download your next Red Hat ISO and it'll be a 650meg recording of "What the fuck do you think you're doing?"

This has to be a joke right (1)

Loosewire (628916) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958239)

SCO please know that I the all mighty CHRIS hate you on a personal note, now go home and CRY.

This had better be a joke (4, Interesting)

Marx_Mrvelous (532372) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958242)

I cannot believe that this is actually happening. What can they possibly be thinking? Do they really think that by threatening almost every major corporation in the *world* with lawsuits that they'll somehow make more money?
In the business world, you do not want to piss off you *entire customer base* like this!
Please tell me this is an April 1 joke that got leaked late...

We all cheered (1)

slam smith (61863) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958243)

We all cheered when caldera did this to Microsoft over DR-DOS. Now they are doing it to us. Is it just me or is there something inherently slimy about litigating your way to profitablity?

Another (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958244)

Another reason to switch to *BSD.

Nothing like alot of backdoor money from $MS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958245)

SCO is not making money and its vendors are running from it like mad. Why not call up Microsoft and get some back door money or agreements for some sweet deals in the future by going after the only real competitor to Microsoft.

A last ditch effort (5, Interesting)

binaryDigit (557647) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958247)

This is just a last ditch effort by a company that will be talked about in the past tense a few years from now. They are obviously angling to have someone buy them or pay them to shut them up. They're hoping IBM will think "hell, we could buy them and their patents for less than all this legal crap will cost". Going after customers (and how much you want to bet that the customers they go after will coincidentially be customers of a certain large computer corp, is just a way to enlist the customers into pushing said computer corp into resolving the issue quickly.

Personally I think AT&T/Lucent/Avaya should form a company and bring the Unix rights back home.

hahahahahahaj (1)

joeldg (518249) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958248)

oh my.. that is one funny read..
yea.. and they are gonna stop people across the world from using linux how?

everyone wants to make a buck somehow.. guess they just had their thumb in their eye and decided to attack the only group worldwide who *might* have given them support.

Thank you SCO (1)

aufecht (163961) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958249)

You will be demise of your own company, with no help from anyone else.

They'll have to change their webserver I guess... (5, Informative)

fuzzbrain (239898) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958254)

According to Netcraft [netcraft.com] , their site is hosted on a Linux webserver.

More to the point: Where is Apple in this game? (1)

northwind (308027) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958257)

Not only Linux but ultimately any Unix like OS would be hit as it seems.
Apples OSX is based on BSD - what will they do?

SCO has been irrelevant for a long time (2)

EvilAlien (133134) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958260)

"Is SCO litigating itself into irrelevance?"

I thought SCO was already irrelevant, and has been for years.

I've only seen their useless OS used in a couple of times in almost a decade, and only in a dinky little home office. The only reasons people still talk about these guys is because of their rediculous lawsuits.

Could someone please send SCO a memo to remind them that they don't matter, and it has nothing to do with alleged misuse of their intellectual property.

File and Line Number (5, Insightful)

rossjudson (97786) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958263)

Once again, such bullshit. Linux is 100% open source. If there are parts of Linux that are infringing, just indicate exactly where the infringement is. That they have not included this information either indicates that it doesn't really exist, or that they don't want to reveal just how small the suspected infringing area really is. We all know that if any actual infringing code was located in the Linux OS it would be gone and replaced with a non-contentious equivalent in no time at all.

Which is why SCO is being so deliberately vague about all of this. They don't want an infringement to be eliminated; they want it to stay in the Linux code base so they can screw over users of Linux.

This is an attack on a development methodology more than anything else. What they're saying is, unless you can PROVE the lineage of your code is clean, we're going to have to assume that it isn't.

I suspect that IBM's lawyers are going to be smart enough to know all this, and will be able to effectively disarm SCO's actions. If there are infringing parts of the code, these will be revealed in a public forum (the courts).

In the meantime, I suggest that the best recourse for a receiver of this letter is to repond, indicating that the entity known as "Linux" is actually composed of thousands of parts, each independently produced, and that SCO needs to provide information indicating which component is infringing.

Or just ignore their f'ing letter.

A good thing (1)

edhall (10025) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958268)

The faster they push this along, the sooner this whole debacle will be over. Regardless of the lack of merit in SCO's central claims, in CIO-land uncertainty is anathema. It would have been worse for SCO to have simply left the situation as FUD.


Just curious.... (1)

caluml (551744) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958276)

Has anyone here actually used SCOs Linux distro? What is it based on? Is it similar to Redhat, Debian, Slackware, what? Does it have any nifty features, or annoyances?

Re:Just curious.... (1)

Jason Earl (1894) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958322)

SCO's latest Linux distro was nothing more than rebranded SuSE (er... UnitedLinux).

A blatant lie (2, Interesting)

noda132 (531521) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958277)

From the letter: Similar to analogous efforts underway in the music industry, we are prepared to take all actions necessary to stop the ongoing violation of our intellectual property or other rights.

"All actions necessary?" Just tell us what code has been copied and it'll be fixed in under a week. The violation will cease to continue. Fast, simple, zero effort.

Or does he mean, "similar to analogous efforts underway in the music industry, we've decided to avoid the main issue and try to make money on the technicalities, while in the long run benefiting nobody and harming ourselves as well as our users."

What was the question, again? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958284)

Thank you, SCO! As a faithful FreeBSD user, I cannot help but be pleased at your actions against the scourge, Linux. We all know how this rogue OS is spreading like a virus (thanks Microsoft!) across the face of the planet. It has undoubtedly caused the near irrelevance of your company and its product by undercutting your "intuhleckshool" property.

Only through a truly impressive display of mindless litigation, right or wrong, can you boost your profile and earn the respect so richly deserved! Your company will be remembered among the greats: Unisys, the RIAA, that software company consisting entirely of lawyers, that guy who patented the Internet, that guy who created the Internet, and so on...

SCO Sued By SCO For IP Infringement (5, Funny)

moojin (124799) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958287)

Today, SCO filed a lawsuit against SCO for selling Linux based solutions with Unix properietery code that it had contributed to the Linux development project. The lawsuit is for irrepairable damages and seeks an award of $10,000,000,000 and legal fees. The CEO of SCO had this to say, "We expect a quick settlement to this case." He also added that "With the settlement money and our recouped legal fees, we can move on to other Linux / Unix distributors, such as Santa Cruz Operation or Caldera."


Simple answer... (1)

gpinzone (531794) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958289)

Is SCO litigating itself into irrelevance?

Why not? What else were they planning on doing to make themselves profitable? No need try and fail to be successful when you can sue and blame everyone else for your eventual failure.

Where is UNISYS now? (1)

JohnZed (20191) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958292)

Well, their market cap is $3.4 billion (http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&lr=&ie=UTF-8&o e=UTF-8&prev=/search%3Fq%3DUIS%26hl%3Den%26lr%3D%2 6ie%3DUTF-8%26oe%3DUTF-8%26sa%3DG&q=stocks:UIS+).. .
Not exactly MSFT-levels, but not quite irrelevant either.

SCO has Dirty Hands. Will not be able to collect (5, Informative)

bstadil (7110) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958295)

This has been posted before but they can not collect on any damages caused, as they have not published the allegdedly infringing portions.

Not telling the world what the code is, is a legal blunder of the first order. This means that they have unclean hands, as they are supposed to try and mitigate the damage in order to receive compensation.

You can't knowlingly add to the damage and then ask for compensation incl Punitive damages based on same. Any suit against Linux vendor in the future can site this as an Affirmative Defense" and pretty much get the suit tossed on that account alone

All things considered... (1)

stienman (51024) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958296)

All else being equal, I'm glad *BSD got the legal troubles out of its system early in development, rather than running into litigious lawyer lapdogs later.


alliteration always averts attention...

obvious (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958298)

Is SCO litigating itself into irrelevance?

eh, does it really matter?

Time to say goodbye, SCO (1)

haruchai (17472) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958304)

The Linux community will be well rid of you.

Learn from the best (1)

Lugor (628175) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958305)

The RIAA is doing good, so why shouldn't SCO learn from the best?

Sue them back. (2, Interesting)

aster_ken (516808) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958311)

Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't Linus own the rights to the Linux trademark?

I noticed on their contact page that they have 1-800-GO-LINUX as one of their main lines. Why not sue them for use of the Linux trademark without permission?

SCO (3, Insightful)

zzxc (635106) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958312)


1. They said that the infringing code isn't in the kernel, so thus it may not apply to all "linux users."

2. If it does, then their own distribution would have contained code that violated their IP.

3. If it contained this code, then under the GPL all the other Linux distributers would be free to use it.

4. I'd sue them for harassment - without presenting any evidence or even exactly *what* infringes, they are issuing cease and desist orders. They are trying to scare people from using Linux. They are nothing but hot air.

Letter to SCO Partners (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#5958321)

From: TeamSCO Partner Program [TeamSCO@sco.rsc01.com]
Sent: Wednesday, May 14, 2003 4:17 PM
To: Dumbass who was working with these bitches that need to get pimp slapped@nowanibmpartner.com
Subject: SCO Suspends Linux Activities

Dear SCO Partner:

As a SCO Partner, we thank you for your support and continued business.
Because you are a valued partner, it is important that we make you aware of
important SCO business decisions and announcements as soon as possible. As
such, we wanted to make you aware of an important announcement made today.

This communication is about recent efforts SCO has made to license and
protect our patents, copyrights and intellectual property pertaining to the
UNIX(r) operating system. As you know, on March 7, 2003 SCO announced that
it filed legal action against IBM in the State Court of Utah, for
misappropriation of trade secrets, tortuous interference, unfair competition
and breach of contract. The complaint alleged that IBM made concentrated
efforts to improperly destroy the economic value of UNIX, particularly UNIX
on Intel, to benefit IBM's new Linux services business.

As we have progressed in our discovery related to this action, SCO has found
compelling evidence that the Linux operating system contains unauthorized
SCO UNIX intellectual property (IP). Due to this discovery, we are taking
three immediate courses of action.

1 - The first is to send a letter alerting commercial users to the fact that
legal liability for the use of Linux by businesses may extend to end users.
Customers should start receiving this letter today. For your information, a
copy of this letter may be found at:
http://www.sco.com/scosource/letter_to_linux_ custo mers.html

2 - The second action we are taking is to suspend all future sales of the
Linux operating system from SCO until the attendant risks with Linux are
better understood and properly resolved.

3 - Finally, although this action affects future development and sales of
SCO's Linux offerings, SCO will continue to support our SCO Linux and
OpenLinux customers and partners who have previously implemented those
products and we will hold them harmless from any SCO intellectual property
issues regarding Linux. SCO will continue to honor all contractual
obligations with existing customers including product updates, service, and

As many of you are already aware, SCO UNIX systems continue to sell well -
including an increase in OpenServer sales over the previous quarter. Our
UNIX products continue to support many of the world's largest businesses. In
addition, new customer sales indicate that there is still no better option
for rock-solid, dependable technology for their core businesses than our SCO
UNIX solutions.

We are excited to be building on our SCO UNIX history as we roll out our
next generation UNIX operating system and SCOx framework this fall. SCOx
will allow small and medium business customers and branch offices to plug
their existing applications into a Web services environment. Details of this
strategy will be unveiled at SCO Forum in Las Vegas, Nevada, August 17-19.
(For more details, see: http://www.sco.com/2003forum ).

SCO remains committed to building new business opportunities for our
partners such as you. We recognize that you have depended on us to provide
reliable, solid technologies for your customers for over twenty years. We
look forward to helping you and your customers meet your business needs for
the next twenty years.


Darl McBride
President and CEO
The SCO Group

someone please put sco out of their misery (1)

ehovland (2915) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958327)

I realize that the only value in buying sco is to make the yammering stop. But come on, ibm sun are you listening!? Just buy these losers and fire their lawyers. Then we can all get back to getting something done.

Did anyone read the link to Gartner group paper? (2, Interesting)

whoever57 (658626) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958331)

I have less and less respect for Gartner every time I read one of their papars. In this one, the author does not seem to understand the difference between copyrights and/or trade secrets and patents.

In the first paragraph, we have:

"IS departments using Linux or other open-source code should have an internal process, possibly with advice from their legal departments, to perform due diligence (see Note 1) on the nature and origin of open-source code for possible infringement of patents"

The suggested process is:

Due Diligence Options

1. Name and reputation of source and origin of software code

2. Names of the contributors and developers

3. If outside libraries are included, the source of the code, its use and deployment

4. Checks with the Free Software Foundation on patent infringement claims

5. Negotiations for indemnification from liabilities, or support from the vendor 6. References and contacts

Reading these, items 1, 2 3 and 6 have absolutely no relevence to patent claims. So, what are they doing as part of a due diligence for patent issues?

SCO schmo (2, Informative)

davmoo (63521) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958335)

When SCO actually presents some proof, instead of their current Microsoft-style inuendo, I'll think about what they have to say and my use of Linux. Until then they can kiss my fat white all-American penguin-lovin' commercial ass.

As for the question "Is SCO litigating itself into irrelevance?", in my opinion no they are not...they were already irrelevant, and have been for several years. This is the last gasp of a dying company. If SCO were a horse, it would have already been shot or sold to a dogfood factory. A better question might be "Has SCO ever been relevant?"

Still enjoying that footshot? (1)

ebbomega (410207) | more than 11 years ago | (#5958339)

So, SCO announces... what... 3 months ago that it's found proprietary code in Linux that is possibly lawsuit-worthy, and only NOW are they pulling their Linux? Bullshit. All of it Bullshit. They themselves are still liable of violating the GPL because they still knowingly distributed proprietary code. All they'll be doing is getting themselves in trouble for doing so after it's all said and done.

*sigh* Well, then... they're going to make a big hooah about this whole proprietary code thing, and everybody's saying "WHAT FRIKKIN CODE?" and they keep saying it'll "come out in court".

So it'll come out in court, and by the time that the court case is actually OVER, the code will no longer be in existence in the linux kernel. Whoopdee. Most linux vendors can say "We didn't know" and that they demanded proof, but SCO kept holding it off for the IBM court case. So once the code is changed, SCO is fucked.

Why don't they bloody well just release the code and tell us what we're using instead of killing themselves by putting themselves through lawsuits that they can't afford in some hopes that they're able to coerce IBM or someone to buy them out, when it seems pretty blatantly obvious that nobody really wants anything to do with the company anymore.

Out of curiosity, anybody know how this lawsuit has been affecting SCO stock? Not to mention if it's cost them any of the small portion of business that they've been getting?

People keep saying that Red Hat is the Microsoft of Linux. Frankly I disagree. SCO so far has been doing a good job of claiming that title, even so much so that they now no longer produce an open-source OS. Red Hat releases their source and adheres to the GPL in every which way. To compare them to Microsoft simply because they're successful is ludicrous.
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