The following is a transcript of Novell's question-and-answer IRC session
about its deal with Microsoft, held on November 27.
<henne> Welcome to the Microsoft/Novell QA Session!
<henne> This meeting is meant to discuss the Microsoft/Novell Collaboration.
<henne> We will try to answer as many questions as we can for round about one
<henne> After that we will try to answer all question that got posted in the
<henne> Some technicalities: [10:02]
<henne> This channel is moderated during the time of the session.
<henne> But it has +z set so the operators (but nobody else) can see what
<henne> So if you have a question or remark just write it.
<henne> The moderator then will give you a voice and you can repeat your
question for everyone.
<henne> ok lets go :)
<henne> first question please? [10:03]
<aka_druid_> at least 100% of the fellows in suse Ive asked
<henne> aka_druid_: please repeat
<aka_druid_> my question is: why nobody in suse fomr technical staff was aware
of the deal?
<aka_druid_> I mean, most people we talk from opensuse devel werent aware til
the very last moment [10:04]
<aka_druid_> thats all, thx
<AJaeger> aka_druid: I was planned to get briefed on the tuesday before but
was flying at that time.
<AJaeger> aka_druid: A couple of others were briefed - and I was briefed
finally a few hours before.
<Nat_> Just to add something to AJ's answer [10:05]
<Nat_> I was aware of discussions with Microsoft for a number of months
<Nat_> Big companies are often talking to each other, though, and I didn't
know if this conversation would go anywhere
<aka_druid_> AJaeger: that meaning nobody from technical ahd anything to do,
to add to elaborate about the deal? They didnt help constructing
<aka_druid_> only got a notice from suits "hey we did this"
<Nat_> There weren't technical people in the meetings in Redmond negotiation
it, but we were asked for our input and made aware of the deal. And a
bunch of people were told a week or so before the deal was announced.
<Nat_> In general for huge deals like this, you try to keep the number of
people involved low or suddenly the whole industry is talking about it,
so I'm not surprised that there was an open discussion on a maliing
list about this :-)
<henne> aka_druid_: does that answer your question? [10:07]
<aka_druid_> ok, so next question heh
<aka_druid_> henne: ya
<henne> Tassoman: please repeat
<Tassoman> OK thanks, and hi to all: Did you enjoyed Shuttleworks openletter?
<AJaeger> Tassoman: No, I didn't.
<AJaeger> Tassoman: you should have seen my reply or my blog entry.
<AJaeger> Tassoman: I understand that he does not agree with the deal but this
was one step to far IMO.
<henne> Tassoman: does that answer your question?
<Tassoman> Sorry but I didn't read the blog.
<Tassoman> BTW, I thinks it answered my question
<AJaeger> Tassoman: http://www.novell.com/coolblogs/?p=648
<henne> tolyluis: please repeat
<tolyluis> what do you think about FSF's announcements about GPLv3? Sorr for
my poor english
<Nat_> Well, the GPL3 process has been underway since the beginning of this
<Nat_> The FSF and Eben Moglen and the Software Freedom Law Center put
together a process with four separate committees to discuss what needs
to be in GPLv3 [10:11]
<Nat_> Committees A, B, C and D
<Nat_> A is big open source projects, B is big companies, C is users and
smaller companies, and D is individuals and "other"
<Nat_> So A includes, for example Samba
<Nat_> Novell has representatives in both committtees A and B, and we have
been talking to Eben about the FSF about the GPLv3 for a long time
<Nat_> we're glad that they committed to making the writing of GPLv3 an open
<Nat_> We think it's better if the GPLv3 is accepted by lots of companies and
individuals and projects
<Nat_> Lately Eben and Richard and others have made some statements that they
will "invalidate" the Novell/MS deal with GPLv3
<Nat_> We're not exactly sure what they mean by that, because so far these are
just vague statements
<Nat_> We'll be interested in seeing the wording they are proposing for GPLv3
<Nat_> We're glad they're talking about GPLv3, also, because it means that
they don't think there are any incompatiblities between GPLv2 and the
covenants issued by Novell and Microsoft. We invited Eben to our
offices in Waltham and he read the entire Microsoft/Novell agreement
<Nat_> and if you want to understand what are the promises that Microsoft has
made to Novell customers, you can read those on microsoft.com/interop
<Nat_> Does that answer your quesiton?
<tolyluis> yes thanks [10:14]
<Nat_> Sure :-)
<henne> JBarr-OSTG: please repeat
<JBarr-OSTG> Will any changes be made to the MS/Novell agreements because of
the uproar about them?
<Nat_> Well there's definitely one thing that we've asked Microsoft to look at
<Nat_> During the discussion with them we asked Microsoft to make a promise
not to sue individual developers, ever, for patent infringement
<Nat_> And we were pleasantly surprised that they were very open to doing this
<Nat_> The "individual non-commercial" covenant that you can find on their web
site is the result of that discussion
<Nat_> Personally I think it falls very short of the mark
<Nat_> I don't think it covers enough people [10:16]
<Nat_> or enough activities
<Nat_> I think it's a big step that MS is going out there and saying "we're
not going to sue individuals"
<Nat_> and they're saying this in a legally binding way
<Nat_> some people have said "MS was never going to sue individuals"
<Nat_> but just look at the RIAA in the US
<Nat_> which is suing 15 year olds and 95 year old grandmas on a regular basis
<Nat_> So we're glad MS started from that sentiment
<Nat_> but the execution stinks so far, and we've asked them to update that
<Nat_> and they are working on it. they're going to send us a draft this week
<Nat_> you even have one MS employee, Jason Matusow, asking for public comment
about these covenants on his blog
<Nat_> So that's one area of the agreement that we have asked MS to change
<henne> JBarr-OSTG: answered? [10:18]
<darix> question answered?
<JBarr-OSTG> yes, thanks
<henne> corbet: please go ahead
<AJaeger> Here's the URL from Jason:
<corbet> Novell claims to have not acknowledged any patent infringements
<corbet> by Linux. But Novell is now paying a tax to Microsoft on the
<corbet> Linux distributions it ships. What, exactly, is Novell paying
<Nat_> We're paying for the promise that Microsoft made to our customers not
to sue them
<corbet> Not to sue them for *what*? For problems you don't acknowledge
<Nat_> Well, we put together an agreement with MS to make Linux and Windows
work better together
<Nat_> Now, as everyone knows, MS has spent the last 10 years saying negative
things about Linux
<Nat_> including implying that there are IP issues in Linux
<Nat_> It didn't make sense for us to do a partnersihp with MS on
interoperability issues and still have this patent cloud hanging around
for our customers
<Nat_> and so MS asked us to put together a patent agreement as well.
<Nat_> And so, we promise MS's customers that we won't sue them and they
promise the same thing to our customres [10:21]
<Nat_> They pay us for our promise and we pay them for their promise
<Nat_> It doesn't matter if the allegations from MSFT are true or not
<Nat_> People can sue each other anyway, and a patent lawsuit is very
expensive to defend against
<henne> corbet: does that answer your q.?
<henne> that means?
<corbet> How did you come up with the value for the "promise" that Microsoft
<Nat_> I have no idea how they did that [10:23]
<Nat_> That's above my pay grade :-)
<Nat_> In general when it comes to patent questions
<Nat_> you look at two things
<Nat_> 1. The patents that the patent holder has
<Nat_> 2. The business over the person who wants patent protection or coverage
<Nat_> And the dollar amount is usually a function of these two values
<Nat_> So for example, you might only hold one patent [10:24]
<Nat_> but if you sue company X for infringing your one patent, and company X
makes $1 billion/year in revenue based on their product that infringes
<Nat_> then even though you only have one patent, you can extract a lot of
money from company X
<Nat_> So I'm guessing the team that put together the deal considered both the
MS and the Novell revenue
<Nat_> You notice that the balance of payments is heavily in NOvell's favor
<Nat_> I.e. MS are giving us much, much more money than we are giving them
<corbet> So how was part (1) done here? Which patents were looked at? That's
what I've been driving at here...
<Nat_> Novell has a few hundred patents, and MS has thousands. So you can
guess that the quality of the patents and the revenue streams of both
companies were considered
<Nat_> corbet: I'm just talking in general about patents and money, not
talking about how the MS/Novell deal was constructed [10:26]
<henne> corbet: Nat just said. he wasnt involved in that process
<Nat_> corbet: again, I'm not sure how they came up with those numbers
<Nat_> I wasn't involved in that
<henne> okay to be fair the next question
<corbet> OK, well, thanks, I'll step aside now.
<henne> suka: please go ahead
<suka> Most of the Novell engineers were suspiciously quiet about the deal
with MS, so would you say it is fair to interpret this as a sign of
silently not-agreeing with it? Or asked more directly: Do you think
this was the right thing to do?
<AJaeger> I wanted to say something directly - and was on the IRC channel
<AJaeger> I listened to the webcast and started writing my blog - and went to
<AJaeger> next morning the MS Covenants were out and confused me - and I guess
a lot of others. So, we had some internal discussions..
<Nat_> I think people have overreacted to this deal
<Nat_> I guess because it involves the words "Microsoft" and "patents"
<Nat_> I think a few major things happened here [10:30]
<Nat_> 1. Novell got Microsoft to acknowledge that Linux is an important part
of IT, and that customers need it.
<Nat_> This is a huge step forward from where things were before.
<Nat_> Compare this to "Linux is a cancer" from not that long ago.
<Nat_> 2. Novell cut a good business deal for itself.
<Nat_> Novell gets a lot of revenue out of this, and we'll be able to invest
some of that in engineering, in openSUSE, in making Linux great.
<Nat_> 3. Windows/Linux interoperability will improve. [10:31]
<Nat_> We're going to write new virtualization code, new Open XML code, and
release it all as open source.
<Nat_> We contribute heavily to open source already, but now we can do more
<Nat_> Now, to address people's concerns
<Nat_> 4. This deal does not take anything away from anyone
<Nat_> Microsoft promising not to sue Novell's customers does not mean that
they are promising TO sue anyone else [10:32]
<Nat_> I know people like to look at the "negative space" on this because
everyone implicitly thinks Microsoft are legal geniuses and can't be
<Nat_> But the fact is, nothing has been taken away
<Nat_> No useful legal precedent has been created.
<Nat_> A judge will never look at this deal and say "Okay, your patents are
all infringed by Linux ,Mr. Ballmer"
<Nat_> So I think all the cries that Novell has hurt the community are simply
not true [10:33]
<Nat_> 5. This deal does not violate GPLv2.
<Nat_> Eben Moglen read our agreement and hasn't said a thing about GPLv2
violation. It's abundantly clear that he doesn't think there is any.
<Nat_> Instead, he and Richard are using the community energy to try to get
people to adopt the previously-controversial GPLv3 (which we support
<Nat_> 6. Ballmer has been FUDding Linux o nIP issues for years [10:34]
<Nat_> This deal didn't change anything on that front, obviously.
<Nat_> Ron (our CEO) published a nice letter the other day contradicting
<Nat_> So, net-net, MS acknowledges Linux, we improve interop, Novell gets
more money into Linux
<Nat_> And nothing is lost from a legal perspective.
<Nat_> People say "you're dividing the community!"
<Nat_> But I think the people who make too much of this, who shun Novell, are
the ones dividing the community.
<darix> did this answer the question?
<Nat_> I'md one :-)
<suka> Nearly. Nat: You were talking about re-investing the money in openSUSE:
Something to back that up? What will we get? More paid engineers?
<Nat_> suka: "Stay tuned." I hope so :-)
<darix> suka: more buildservice engineers!:)
<suka> Ok, thanks :)
<darix> i've heard so
<henne> ok next question
<henne> bgerber: please go ahead
<bgerber> What is Novells stance on GPLv3? Will it be used by Novell?
<Nat_> GPLv3 doesn't exist yet
<Nat_> we haven't seen a near-final draft yet
<Nat_> So it's hard to say.
<bgerber> You are still making changes so Novell is able to use it? [10:37]
<Nat_> Some projects will adopt it, and some of those are really critical to
what we do -- glibc for example.
<bgerber> What about Novell sponsdered project?
<Nat_> We are very happy with GPLv2 and it looks like hte kernel will probably
stick with that.
<Nat_> bgerber: The license we use depends on what we're trying to accomplish
<Nat_> We have some X11 licensed code, for example the Mono class libraries.
<adrianL> bgerber: the reasons why GPLv3 is not liked for Novell is also valid
for other companies. So, in the current state it would not be used
by a large number of companies atm, I fear
<Nat_> That's a good point adrian
<Nat_> Also one thing to consider is indemnification being offered by other
<bgerber> yes I agree I dislike the DRM
<henne> bgerber: youre sitting in a room with AJaeger. who works heavily in
the glibc steering comitee. so novell sponsored...
<Nat_> So for example, Red Hat and Oracle both claim to offer patent
indemnification to their customers
<Nat_> So if you are customer A, and you buy Linux from one of those
companies, they promise to step in and protect you from any patent
<Nat_> But that promise is only for their customers
<Nat_> so if you make a copy of the software and give it to customer B, who
did not pay Red Hat or Oracle, the promise does not extend to customer
<Nat_> this is extremely similar in concept and in form to the promise MS is
making to Novell's customers
<Nat_> So my guess is that GPLv3 will need to be compatible with the existing
business practices of all those Linux companies [10:40]
<Nat_> (HP offers that too I believe)
<bgerber> I understand that. I insist my clients buy, what is needed from
Novell for their business needs
<hd41> Thanks for that!
<henne> bgerber: question answered?
<henne> ok next one
<tonz> are there any benefits for the whole open source community from this
<Nat_> A few [10:41]
<Nat_> We are collaborating with Microsoft on a few different interop areas
<Nat_> We'll be adding Open XML support to OpenOffice, building a
virtualization shim to run SLES optimized on Veridian and Vista on Xen
<Nat_> We'll also be working together on WS-Management [10:42]
<Nat_> All this code will be released open source
<Nat_> so everyone gets that, and can benefit from it
<Nat_> (By the way, in that process, we don't plan to add MS-patented code to
<Nat_> (Our policy on that is unchanged -- and MS didn't give us the right to
do that anyway!) [10:43]
<henne> tonz: answered?
<tonz> yes, thanks
<Nat_> Also I think it's good that MS acknowledges Linux
<Nat_> and we want that individual covenant from MS to be better, so that all
the hackers of the world know for certain that they won't be sued
<henne> the_dude: your turn
<the_dude> ok, i think this agreement creates a perception that novell/suse
is moving away from the opensource communitiy, what will novell do
to keep users from migrating away to other distributio
<Nat_> We're not moving away from open source at all!
<the_dude> i did not say that
<Nat_> Okay :-) But we have to remind everyone of that [10:45]
<Nat_> I think there are a lot of misunderstandings out there
<Nat_> and we need to clear those up
<Nat_> like we're doing here
<Nat_> also, I think people choose Linux distributions because they're good,
because they work well. we're going to keep working hard to make SUSE
the best Linux distribution on the planet :-)
<the_dude> all i know is how my peers talk about it
<the_dude> and the talk is in general not postive [10:46]
<darix> the_dude: sure. but you can also try to clear up the
<AJaeger> the_dude: Do you have any ideas on how to change their mood?
<Nat_> Yeah, we're open to ideas on this one
<the_dude> hmmm ..
<the_dude> i was hoping you'd help me on this one :)
<Nat_> Well, point them to our public answers, have them send us emai lwith
<the_dude> fair enough [10:47]
<Nat_> again, we think a lot of people have gotten overexcited about this
because they don't understand it
<darix> the_dude: done?
<henne> dotan: your turn
<dotan> I guess Nat answerred it [10:48]
<dotan> thanks anyway
<Nat_> You can ask another one if you want
<dead_rose> How this deal going to affect me, not a developper but a technical
user who is using SuSE to make a living pushing out Microsoft from
SMB datacenters and desktop users, by replacing it with opensource
<henne> we still have a lot of questions in the queue
<hd41> It will help you quite a bit, first it will give confidence to your
customers that Linux and Windows will be working together [10:49]
<hd41> and second it will give them a much more secure environment then the
Windows boxes they run
<hd41> (You see, we are still competing!) [10:51]
<darix> dead_rose: answered?:)
<dead_rose> hmmm sure
<darix> dead_rose: if there is anything unclear just say it. :)
<Nat_> Let us know if we can help you in other ways :-)
<Nat_> We support your mission :-)
<dead_rose> Is it Novell gonna protect me ? [10:52]
<dead_rose> in case Microsoft put the hounds after me
<dead_rose> ok 10x [10:53]
<Nat_> We will do everything we can to support you :-) Novell offers
indemnification to our customers, MS promises not to sue Novell
customers, and Novell has invested heavily in the Open Invention
Network which protects EVERYONE against patent lawsuits.
<Nat_> By the way, Novell didn't need protection from the OIN itself. We
already had hundreds of patents. But we invested anyway -- effectively
giving protection to all the other Linux companies.
<dead_rose> Yes but this is not a patent infrigment but an attack on some biz
area ! [10:54]
<Nat_> If you are trying to kick Windows out
<Nat_> and put Linux in
<Nat_> we will do everything we can to help you!
<dead_rose> I guess I am not the only one !
<darix> dead_rose: as ballmer said: we are still competing in the business. :)
<henne> dead_rose: question answered now?
<dead_rose> 10x nat ... I apreciate your effort to come in here
<dead_rose> 100% ok
<henne> idra: go ahead
<idra> ok a question again on the deal itself
<idra> What does get form the deal? so far you told us what's the Novell pros,
and what happen if MS does not keep up the promises?
<idra> I mean how novel can react if MS sues a Novell customer anyway?
<Nat_> We will make fun of them in public
<Nat_> I'm not exactly sure what the provisions are on breach of contract
<Nat_> in this deal
<Nat_> but usually it's a pretty serious thing
<Nat_> Also, the covenants MS is offering are not secret
<idra> and how Novell can react if MS drag its feet and do not really help
much for interoperability? Or worst help only in one direction Linux ->
<Nat_> you can go to microsoft.com/interop right now and read them
<Nat_> they are promises Microsoft is making to all Novell customers
<adrianL> idra: Novell can sue MS, if MS does it , but the customer has to
<Nat_> and MS intends them to be legally binding
<Nat_> I doubt that will happen idra [10:58]
<Nat_> Doesn't seem likely.
<idra> sorry guys, I've read all the material, I am asking question that are
not answered by that material
<hd41> On interoperability Microsoft has already started to work with us. We
have engineer to engineer talks around Lohnhorn's hypervisor already
and are starting with real work soon!
<idra> Nat_, well MS history speaks clearly about that but if you think this
case will be different I accept your answer
<Nat_> Everyone thinks MS are these geniuses who always put together
<Nat_> but history speaks otherwise on that., too [10:59]
<Nat_> Remember the case where Microsoft sued Lindows for trademark
<hd41> The customers who have asked for interoperability are very powerfull
cusomters even from a Miscoroft perspective.
<Nat_> The judge who oversaw the case ended up calling into quesiton the
Windows trademark itself
<idra> (I was referring to cooperation btw)
<Nat_> Microsoft essentially lost in the US
<Nat_> and ended up paying Lindows a HUGE $24million settlement
<Nat_> and all Lindows had to do was change the name
<Nat_> The whole deal was supposed to be secret
<Nat_> but then Lindows (now Linspire) was compelled by the SEC to reveal the
secrets of the deal [11:00]
<Nat_> as a material financial event for Linpsire, which was going public at
<Nat_> So... here you have MS suing a small company
<Nat_> and the result is, they pay $24 million, their secrets aren't kept, and
the Windows trademark itself is questioned
<Nat_> This does not sound like the work of geniuses
<Nat_> there are numerous examples like this
<Nat_> so I would turn the paranoia knob down one notch :-) [11:01]
<idra> I've aked specifically what
<Nat_> We are glad to be partnered with Microsoft and are really glad they
want to work together with us to make Linux/Windows interoperability
<idra> Novell can do in case Microsoft don't respect these 2 promises
<Nat_> idra: I don't know, that's part of our contract I'm sure. It would be
breach of contract, which is usually pretty serious. That's a detail of
the deal which I'm not privy to.
<Nat_> It would look really bad for MS though, I'm sure.
<henne> okay next question idra?
<hd41> We have all the ways available between two parties of a contract,
nothing special we are aware of.
<idra> the only one unaswered, is what are the pros for MS ?
<darix> idra: novell holds some patents aswell.
<idra> darix, that's the only pro for MS ? [11:03]
<hd41> They are satisfying their large customers who have pushed them towards
<hd41> For all other motives I think you need to ask them.
<henne> idra: questions answered?
<henne> okay one little adimistrative thing :)
<henne> we have spend one hour now
<henne> i will not accept new questions
<henne> but only empty the queue
<henne> so we have time to answer the questions from the wiki
<henne> netmask: go ahead
<netmask> (Q) I still have old mail/blogs to read but as far as I've already
gathered Microsoft won't sue individuals if they code and use
patented code at home and don't distribute. ZDNet says "it's worst
than useless". Some GPL advocates claim that the non-sueing
agreement should apply to all users/developers, even if they don't
use SLE(S/D). How is the discussion on this area? Is Novell
interested in extending the deal to non-Novell Linux users?
<Nat_> Good quesiton, we covered this one earlier in the hour [11:05]
<Nat_> I agree that the individual covenant from Microsoft is not good enough
<Nat_> We've asked MS to broaden it
<Nat_> They want to make it broader, to make it work for the community
<Nat_> We're working on that with them now
<Nat_> I hope we have results soon :-)
<netmask> so no news for now?
<Nat_> Nothing yet
<Nat_> Sorry, thanksgiving interrupted the work
<henne> tolyluis again
<tolyluis> last question?
<darix> tolyluis: just ask your question
<tolyluis> what Novell think about patents?. Do you want to go on here in
<Nat_> By the way, I recommend everyone read our FAQ on this deal if they
<Nat_> tolyluis: we have a public patent statement on that [11:07]
<Nat_> In short, we think article 52 of the european patent covention is good
as it stands
<henne> tolyluis: you had another one
<henne> tolyluis: another question i mean
<tolyluis> no i dont for now sorry
<henne> mcxx: please go ahead
<mcxx> Do you fear openSUSE developers will migrate to other distributions, as
proposed by Shuttelworth. Why/why not?
<adrianL> I do not fear Shuttleworth, because people who fear that openSUSE
might violate GPL will notgo to a distro which actually is doing
<mcxx> But they don't need to switch to Ubuntu.
<Nat_> Also openSUSE is clearly a great distribution. We're glad Ubuntu is
out there too -- the more the merrier -- as the pie is plenty big
enough for all of us.
<adrianL> of course there is always a risk that people will switch because of
decisions, but there is also always the chance that others switch to
because of this reason in the opposite direction
<henne> mcxx: question answered?
<mcxx> yes, thanks
<adrianL> mcxx: we can be frigthend now, but only the time will tell ...
<henne> Tsuroerusu: please go ahead [11:12]
<Tsuroerusu> >If< this deal is going to violate GPLv3, is Novell willing to
fork all the last GPLv2 versions of the libaries and components
needed to put a distribution out the door (glibc, gcc etc. etc) ?
<darix> we should work on creating a good 10.2 so they stick to suse.
<Nat_> Obviously we don't want to spend our time forking and maintaining
parallel branches of glibc, gcc, etc
<Nat_> But it's really hard to discuss GPLv3 considering it doesn't exist yet
<Nat_> And despite these ominous and threatening statements from Eben and
Richard, we don't know what form it will take [11:13]
<Nat_> The way I heard their statements, they were more of a threat to
Microsoft than to Novell.
<Nat_> Anyway, that's a hypothetical question that is hard to answer without
<AJaeger> Let's wait for the next draft of GPLv3.
<Tsuroerusu> OK, one more thing
<henne> a tiny one i hope ;)
<henne> go ahead [11:14]
<Tsuroerusu> Excuse me, my keyboard sucks, hang on ;)
<Nat_> I also just want to say, for the Ubuntu question, I think it's best for
Linux if we all focus on taking users from Microsoft instead of
shifting them between Linux distributions.
<darix> Tsuroerusu: just a reminder: you only have roughly 480 chars ;)
<Nat_> Also, there are a few billion people out there who hvaen't even chosen
an operating system yet
<Nat_> that leaves a lot of room for all of us.
<Tsuroerusu> Nat_: You said earlier that you still were gonna work on making
SUSE the best distro, well, how about giving permission or
whatever is needed to allow ZMD, rug etc. to be taken out of
openSUSE I have had so many curse words about ZMD and stuff that
it would offend you.
<AJaeger> Tsuroerusu: Get 10.2 ;-) [11:16]
<Tsuroerusu> AJaeger: It's still default, and that's the problem ;)
<Tsuroerusu> I want it fed to the dog
<AJaeger> By default you get the "Enterprise Software management Pattern" -
just disable that and use the "openSUSE SW Pattern"
<henne> please. not that topic again. this is OFF-TOPIC
<AJaeger> This is off-topic, I'm not answering further ;-)
<henne> this is something for a general status meeting [11:17]
<kblin> How does this "non-commercial vs commercial" developer split affect
summer of code students who obviously earned money for their work
during the summer and who continue to contribute to their respective
projects in their spare time now?
<henne> kblin: please go ahead
<Nat_> It's not clearly defined
<Nat_> kblin: I think that's one of the limitations of the individual covenant
<Nat_> as we mentioned before, we are not happy with the way that covenant was
<Nat_> MS has acknowledged that the covenant is not good enough either
<Nat_> google for "jason matusow covenant" and you'll find a blog from an MS
employee about that [11:18]
<Nat_> We are working with MS to improve that covenant so that it's actually
<Nat_> Ah thanks darix :-)
<Nat_> The idea is to cover all open source developers.
<Nat_> So we hope we can get the wording a lot closer in the next draft :-)
<henne> kblin: does that answer your question?
<kblin> sort of
<kblin> I have another one though
<kblin> has microsoft expressed any interest in cooperating inother
compatibility areas? apart from xen and OOo?
<kblin> say, samba or kerberos.. or wine [11:20]
<hd41> We do have a huge wishlist for them, no worries
<hd41> The three areas we already agreed on are the beginning, not the end. I
am sure you will see more going forward.
<kblin> hd41, let's say I worry because so far they haven't given the EU much
useful documentation [11:21]
<hd41> Virtualization, OpenOffice and WebServicesManagement is where we begin.
<hd41> We can't really comment on that.
<darix> isnt samba and mono covered too?
<henne> kblin: are you satisfied? [11:22]
<hd41> What we know is that openSUSE 10.1 and SUSE Linux Enterprise 10 were
able to get a lot of Active Directory integration done, and our
customers love it!
<kblin> I've read nothing on wine.. and it's patents on the api I'm concerned
<darix> kblin: i dont think wine will be covered.
<darix> kblin: done?
<kblin> anyway, that goes in the direction of what irda asked, and that wasn't
<kblin> so, done
<henne> okay final question from the queue
<henne> dotan: again
<dotan> Hi again :) do you think the community feedback you recieved is
somewhat "orgenised"? and what is the motivation to do so?
<Nat_> I think it's pretty disorganized
<Nat_> Different people are expressing different opinions [11:24]
<Nat_> Some people say "Oh god! A deal with MS!"
<Nat_> Some say "A deal with MS is good! But oh god, you acknowledged that
patents are infringed by Linux!"
<Nat_> and then some people said
<Nat_> "A deal with MS is okay! And every piece of software infringes
patents! But the covenants are not good!"
<Nat_> So... I don't think it's particularly organized.
<henne> dotan: does that answer your question? [11:25]
<dotan> sure, cool with me
<henne> now we are going over to the wiki questions
<adrianL> which ones are not answered yet ? [11:27]
<henne> give us a minute to sort out whats not already answered
<Nat_> Question from Marcell: What will Novell do when MS starts to sue other
linux distros (ie. community driven Debian, Gentoo, Arch...) for patent
infringments? Suggest paying 40m in cash? [11:29]
<Nat_> Novell invested a huge quantity of resources into the Open Invention
<Nat_> which is an independent company formed to protect all distributors of
Linux against patent lawsuits
<Nat_> We gave OIN money and helped them get patents which they can use to
retaliate against anyone who sues a Linux distributor
<Nat_> So if MS were to sue Mandriva for distributing Linux, for example,
OIN's protection would be triggered
<Nat_> We think OIN is a great organization and we continue to support OIN.
<Nat_> The same protection would apply to non-profits like Debian. [11:31]
<Nat_> (www.openinventionnetwork.com for more information)
<henne> question from cb400f__ [11:33]
<henne> If the public financial details are correct. MS will pay $240 million
for 5x70.000 SLE coupons. According to my calculations that's about
$685 per coupon. I understand that a coupon is a one year
subscription. That's a pretty steep price, makes people, including me,
think MS might be buying something other than coupons for the
money. Maybe there's some relation to question #1, otherwise I don't
like to think about what MS is buying.
<hd41> Microsoft will be a sales channel of Novell going forward.
<hd41> As part of this deal Microsoft is purchasing 70,000 coupons a year.
<hd41> The coupons are for standard and priority subscriptios of SUSE Linux
Enterprise Server and include support from Novell to the end customer.
<hd41> The pricing is a normal price which we use in other deals of such
<Nat_> Mono is covered by the agreement, to answer JBarr's question.
<henne> thwere are no questions in the wiki we didnt answer i think
<henne> right? [11:36]
<Nat_> Sounds good to me
<Nat_> Thanks for joining us everyone :-)
<henne> So that was it. I hope we answered at least some of your questions (im
sure Nat fingers hurt).
<henne> If you have more dont hesitate to contact us on
<hd41> Thanks everybody!
<henne> Thank you all for participating. Good night and good luck!
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