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Sol
May 24, 2003, 07:59 AM
Has anyone read about the SCO Group suing IBM over copyright infringement? The SCO Group owns the intellectual property of Unix; Linux, which IBM loads on its servers, is a variation of Unix (so is OS X). What raised eyebrows earlier this week was that Microsoft paid SCO Group for the license to sell software that connects to Unix. While Microsoft is not involved in the lawsuit, it appears to be supportive of the SCO Group's argument of copyright infringement. Is this another cynical attempt by Microsoft to destroy Linux as a viable alternative to its own operating systems?

maradong
May 24, 2003, 09:41 AM
Originally posted by Sol
Has anyone read about the SCO Group suing IBM over copyright infringement? The SCO Group owns the intellectual property of Unix; Linux, which IBM loads on its servers, is a variation of Unix (so is OS X). What raised eyebrows earlier this week was that Microsoft paid SCO Group for the license to sell software that connects to Unix. While Microsoft is not involved in the lawsuit, it appears to be supportive of the SCO Group's argument of copyright infringement. Is this another cynical attempt by Microsoft to destroy Linux as a viable alternative to its own operating systems?
nono,
there is no real thread for linux. Actually SCO owns the unix rights. And well, Linux is a derived UNIX, it is using it s filesystems, and file architectures. Hence, there is certainly no real problem for Linux.
Rember that SCO even works together with SuSe and some other major linux dists, to bring out the "United Linux" Version.
So in reality they are working towards getting linux an good anf easy to use operating system.
Actually all they did, was to say that IBM, with supporting linux since 1992 oder 1993 ( i don t remember well ) has given raised such a public interest towards linux, that so many people are using it right now, and nobody does use the basic unix, they own the right for.

But, they don 't claim Linux to be bad, nor do they say Linux is illegal. By the way, Linux is in fact not that near related to UNIX, as even the core of the operating system, namely the kernel, are differnt. So infact, only the filesystem structure is the same. ( the filesystem itself , is different. )
I hope that this piece of information has helped you.

P.s. There is neither some thread for OS X as it is based on FreeBSD, an open source Unix. And the SCO hasnt got the right to not allow people or companies to use UNIX as they like.

That 's it.

wdlove
May 24, 2003, 10:25 AM
I certainly glad that you cleared that up maradong in a positive fashion. Maybe Microsoft is just up to some hanky panky?

maradong
May 24, 2003, 03:02 PM
i don t really understand:

Maybe Microsoft is just up to some hanky panky?


but perhaps you want to explain it to me :D

caveman_uk
May 24, 2003, 03:38 PM
As far as I can understand SCO's claims it seems they believe that IBM put Unix code into the Linux kernel and other places so infringing their IP. What screws SCO's case is that until VERY recently they had their own version of Linux (Caldera) that used that same kernel. In fact you can still get off their ftp server. So they've been helping to distribute code that infringes their IP. Kinda makes them look stupid... I don't know the legal basis to the BSD codebase - I know it was quite torturous in the early days but I think that was cleared up a while back. Some say the reason Linux got such a head start on FreeBSD was because of the legal problems with BSD when both started out...

M$ is just stiring the **** quite frankly. Licensing someones IP makes their IP look stronger so improves SCOs case against IBM. M$ just wants to get one over on IBM...

mim
May 24, 2003, 06:11 PM
It's a liitle more complicated....

SCO owns a VERSION of Unix (not Unix in it's entirety). SCO are claiming that someone has inadvertently released proprietry code from SCO's Unix into Linux. This means that code which was a "trade secret" is now freely available under the Linux GPL. IBM develops for both, so it is possible that a person on the Unix side was switched to develop on the Linux side and so put some of that code he was just working on into Linux....but IBM are unlikely to make a mistake like that.

It's important to note that SCO are suing IBM because they SELL Linux, not because they are accused of putting Unix code into Linux. SCO have also sent out letters to a heap of companies that USE linux that they "may be running illegal software" etc etc. The implication is that THEY may be next in the courts.

This is where Microsoft comes in. Microsoft want to sink Linux. There is speculation that Microsoft is behind SCO's moves, as this is leading to the total discreditiation of Linux, and is makeing people (well - MANAGMENT people) very frightened of using GPL'd code.

Now I may get the next bit wrong, because it's been a while since I read up on this....

<edit - I have mixed this bit up, told you it had been a while..<sigh> Basically BSD had some Unix code in it, AT&T sued the BSD development team (that uni) BSD removed the code...but...UNIX had LOADS of BSD code IT. AT&T said, we wont sue you if you let us keep that BSD code in Unix. But AT&T (and now SCO) do not own the intellectual rights to that code. I'll leave what I wrote originally here so you can flame me - I deserve it.>

The company that is now SCO basically obtained the rights to their Unix by threatening to sue the University that developed it (some shenanigans that I can't recall). Back then SCO's Unix kernals and the Linux kernals were both much closer to their ancestor, so it's likely that they share a bits of that codebase anyway.

Now the juciy bit is that the settlement between SCO (I think it was AT&T at the time?) and the university allows SCO to make money from their Unix, but not to claim intellectual rights to it!

So, their case seems very very suspect. But the damage to Linux may have already been done. If IBM had any hints that something like this may happen it may explain why we've been hearing rumors about them wanting to sell OSX with their servers.

I'll try and hunt down a link to a good explaination of all this, as mine has too many holes in it...sorry.

mim
May 24, 2003, 07:25 PM
Ok, a few things to clear up some of my mistakes above.

Linus wrote Linux from scratch - it should not contain any of the original Unix code.

SCO do actually seem to own the Unix code, but not the name, nor the specification (i.e. what makes unix, unix).

There's a good link here http://mozillaquest.com/Linux03/ScoSource-02_Story04.html

and the Slashdot commentry is good too http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=03/05/23/1242201&mode=thread&tid=123&tid=130&tid=185&tid=190&tid=99

MrMacMan
May 24, 2003, 08:52 PM
Mim, your edits are correct, SCO aint suing IBM just because they have a Linux OS, its because they might have incorporated parts of SCO's property into their version, which would be illegal.

Because almost every non-windows of runs on some *nix code there is no way to stop this, are you going to sue them all or force them to give you their profits?
Nah... because most of them know parts of their OS's do infact belong to SCO, etc... no one (should) deny this.

mim
May 24, 2003, 09:29 PM
Originally posted by MrMacman
Because almost every non-windows of runs on some *nix code .....

It's been rumored time and time again that even windows has stolen code in it. And now Microsoft has decided to licence Unix from SCO....hmmmm.

I think not many people reaslise how potentially damaging this is to all the open source software groups. If SCO wins we could see all sorts of open source code being accused (truthfully or not) of containing proprietry code. While Microsoft and others protect themselves from this by explicitly not divulging their code.

Sol
May 24, 2003, 10:23 PM
Originally posted by mim
If SCO wins we could see all sorts of open source code being accused (truthfully or not) of containing proprietry code. While Microsoft and others protect themselves from this by explicitly not divulging their code.

Uncertainty about open source software will certainly play into Microsoft's hands. If it is proven correct in its accusations the SCO Group may get a few due royalties and a large sum for compensation but it would also have destroyed the credibility of Linux in the process. Microsoft could then sell Windows NT to anyone who is forced to replace their trusty Linux boxes. Better yet, this legal mess could lead to OS X Server on IBM hardware but that would depend on Apple's willingness to expand into new markets this way.

MrMacMan
May 25, 2003, 12:36 AM
Microsoft doesn't use any, any type of *nix code, sorry.

I mean, if you can point it out, great, I will admit defeat, but I don't even see the win NT kernal close...

maradong
May 25, 2003, 01:40 AM
Originally posted by mim
Ok, a few things to clear up some of my mistakes above.

Linus wrote Linux from scratch - it should not contain any of the original Unix code.

SCO do actually seem to own the Unix code, but not the name, nor the specification (i.e. what makes unix, unix).

There's a good link here http://mozillaquest.com/Linux03/ScoSource-02_Story04.html

and the Slashdot commentry is good too http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=03/05/23/1242201&mode=thread&tid=123&tid=130&tid=185&tid=190&tid=99
Linus indeed wrote linux from scratch, but he used the well known file architecture of unix. Like /etc /var /usr
that's it.

caveman_uk
May 26, 2003, 07:28 AM
Originally posted by MrMacman
Microsoft doesn't use any, any type of *nix code, sorry.

I mean, if you can point it out, great, I will admit defeat, but I don't even see the win NT kernal close...
I was under the impression the TCP/IP stack in NT was lifted from BSD. Which of course is perfectly legal if it's under the BSD licence.

caveman_uk
May 26, 2003, 07:32 AM
Originally posted by maradong
Linus indeed wrote linux from scratch, but he used the well known file architecture of unix. Like /etc /var /usr
that's it.
Not only Linus writes the kernel anymore - he does write for it still but his role is more as of the controlling mind as to what goes in. A lot of people write code for it and submit it. This is where chunks of tainted code could enter the kernel. IBM is a huge player in the Linux field and spends far more money on it than anyone else....billions in fact. So their employees do write a lot of code for not just the kernel but for a lot of other projects.

JackRipper
May 27, 2003, 08:00 AM
Originally posted by mim
It's a liitle more complicated....

This is where Microsoft comes in. Microsoft want to sink Linux. There is speculation that Microsoft is behind SCO's moves, as this is leading to the total discreditiation of Linux, and is makeing people (well - MANAGMENT people) very frightened of using GPL'd code.


Microsoft also had a part in SCO ( at least the OpenServer variant ). Here is the login screen from a SCO OpenServer session:

SCO OpenServer(TM) Release 5

(C) 1976-1998 The Santa Cruz Operation, Inc.
(C) 1980-1994 Microsoft Corporation
All rights reserved.

For complete copyright credits,
enter "copyrights" at the command prompt.

note the second copyright line.

MacCoaster
Jun 8, 2003, 06:32 PM
Rememeber Xenix? Microsoft's ancient version of UNIX, I believe it was sold to SCO by Microsoft. XENIX was actually licensed from AT&T

http://www.sourcemagazine.com/articles/viewer.asp?a=695

Doctor Q
Jun 9, 2003, 12:28 PM
It looks like SCO's vague threats to 1500 large companies that use Linux are going to be ignored. IBM's response to SCO's lawsuit said that, basically, none of the claims in SCO's lawsuit are true. IBM appears to be right since SCO has now admitted that Novell had never transferred to SCO the very Unix copyrights and patents that SCO claims were infringed. To add to the SCO snafu, one of the 1500 companies that SCO threatened was, you guessed it, Novell!

Sol
Jun 13, 2003, 10:12 PM
Every day these SCO people look more stupid than before. Now I hear some others are getting in on the bandwagon and suing Apple for using the name 'Unix' in their web-site. How is Unix supposed to grow if this kind of stupidity continues?