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Re: M$ 's strategy against Linux: nightmare scenario

To: Mike Acar <>
Subject: Re: M$ 's strategy against Linux: nightmare scenario
From: cypher <>
Date: Sat, 6 Dec 1997 18:32:21 -0500 (EST)
In-reply-to: <>
> Snip: Linus works for Transmeta, which Microsoft might buy in order to
> "acquire" Linux. Legal or not, the legal fight might hamper Linux's spread 
> well enough to significantly reduce the threat to NT.

Isn't this the point where anarchy ensues? Think of it this way: How many
linux boxes are out there. Basically for every linux box out there we have
a backup of the code. If the M$ people got legal rights to Linux they
couldn't possibly enforce a NDA agreement on the most current version of
Linux. So then there would be MS Linux product line, and we would still
keep developing Linux, at worst witha different name. Not that this
wouldn't piss us off, but we would overcome and continue... right!

So, the point is that Linux has this subtlety about it that it can't ever
really die. It's sort of taken on it's own life. 

Todd M. Shrider                         Unix Workstation Support Group
(812)855-2627                           2711 E. 10th Street                    Indiana University,            Bloomington, IN 47408-2671

> This isn't a particularly big worry to me. The GPL aside, Linus's contract 
> with
> Transmeta almost definitely states specifically that Transmeta has no rights 
> at
> all to software Linus wrote before he was employed there; similarly, it almost
> definitely excludes rights to software Linus writes on his own time. Further,
> I'm not sure how much of the kernel Linus actually "owns" anymore; my
> understanding (flawed it may be) is that he's primarily coordinating kernel
> release and design, and not actually writing nearly as much code as he did. If
> this is the case, Linus himself might not be able to claim ownership of the
> kernel anymore.
> Of course, I'm not a lawyer, so I speak from a position of significant
> ignorance; handfuls of salt all round. But I really don't think that MS is 
> going
> to be able to use intellectual property to attack Linux.
> What does worry me, however, is that Intel, MS and others are making 
> significant
> progress in taking control of the PC architecture. With the patented Slot-One
> and Slot-Two, Intel is putting serious pressure on its competitors in the
> motherboard markets; between Slot-One, Slot-Two, and buying the Alpha, I 
> expect
> the threat to Intel's dominance of the PC CPU market to virtually disappear.
> The I2O SIG will control access to the hardware docs on the next generation of
> fast PCs, and the licensing terms - let alone the SIG member's veto power over
> membership applicants - are in fundamental conflict with Linux and the other
> free PC Unices. Microsoft might not need to try to crush Linux directly; 
> there's
> a distinct possibility that Linux simply won't run on the next generation of
> PCs.
> But maybe that's just my negativity speaking. I doubt that even a large part 
> of
> the PC industry would like to see the architecture grow proprietary; perhaps 
> could lead the way in providing a design for a new PC-class architecture which
> is Open Hardware compliant/approved.
> Along those lines, are there any plans for providing Linux drivers for the
> Wintel hardware SGI's announced for next summer?
> -- 
> Mike Acar - - "This autumn is sad beyond belief." - 
> Kafka

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