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May 21, 2003

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Conectiva, Mandrake, and SuSE Say No SCO in Their Code

SCO-Caldera v IBM:

Is SCO Trying to Renege on Clearing Linux Kernel ?

Linux and the SCO-Caldera v IBM Lawsuit

By Mike Angelo -- 21 May 2003 (C) -- Page 1

SCO Has Not Found Its Code in Kernel.Org Linux Kernel or in GNU/Linux OS

Article Index

SCO-Caldera v. IBM:

SCO Clears Linux Kernel but Implicates Red Hat and SuSE

IBM Files Answer to SCO's Caldera v IBM Complaint

IBM Response to SCO-Caldera Complaint Is Outrageous!


SCO-Caldera & the GNU/Linux Community:

Note: while this article was in development, SCO-Caldera announced that it will let a hand-picked third-party panel look at Linux kernel code that SCO-Caldera claims is proprietary SCO-owned code -- under a non-disclosure agreement (NDA). (Linux Buzz: SCO to Reveal Allegedly Copied Code, Linux Journal, 15 May 03. Link in Resources section at end of this article. )

We believe that to be another SCO-Caldera smoke and mirrors scam. One reason is that if the members of the panel sign NDAs, then SCO-Caldera has control over what they may say publicly about the matter covered by the SCO NDA. The most honest way for SCO-Caldera to prove there is SCO-Owned code in the Linux kernel is to post its specific claims detailing the code in question to the linux-kernel mailing list or on the SCO-Caldera Web site. MozillaQuest Magazine will look into this new SCO-Caldera scam in an upcoming article.

Are you one of those concerned people who has been following the SCO v Everyone controversy. If so, you now likely are painfully aware that SCO-Caldera spokespeople are contradicting each other and themselves about SCO-Caldera claims that there is SCO-owned code in what SCO-Caldera loosely calls Linux. Perhaps before this saga has run its course, things might reduce to SCO v SCO or SCO v Caldera. SCO (NASDAQ: SCOX) is the company formerly known as Caldera (NASDAQ: CALD).

SCO Cleared Official Linux Kernel of Tainted Code

In a previous story looking into SCO-Caldera's vague and naked claims that there is SCO-owned code in Linux, we reported that Chris Sontag said SCO had not found SCO-owned code in the kernel.org Linux kernel.

"In an e-mail discussion that took place 24 and 25 April, SCO-Caldera Senior Vice President Chris Sontag told MozillaQuest Magazine that there is SCO-owned code in Red Hat and SuSE Linux distributions. He also told MozillaQuest Magazine that the tainted code is not in the Linux kernel that Linus [Torvalds] and others have helped develop. We're talking about what's on the periphery of the Linux kernel." (SCO-Caldera v IBM: SCO Clears Linux Kernel but Implicates Red Hat and SuSE)

The discussion went like this:

MozillaQuest Magazine: When Darl [McBride] said "substantial System V code [SCO-owned Unix code] showing up in Linux", did he mean the Linux kernel, the GNU/Linux operating system, a Linux distribution(s), or Linux applications? If it is in the kernel, which kernel version(s)?

Chris Sontag: We're not talking about the Linux kernel that Linus and others have helped develop. We're talking about what's on the periphery of the Linux kernel. (Ibid. Emphasis added.)

Since that article was published, SCO-Caldera has returned to its prior posture of trying again to vaguely implicate the kernel.org Linux kernel. However, we believe at this time that SCO-Caldera is blowing smoke again -- as part of its war on the entire Linux community. That topic is discussed some here today and will be discussed further in some upcoming MozillaQuest Magazine articles.

SCO Wants to Hurt Linux Development and Deployment

Up to that discussion with Chris Sontag, as far as we know, SCO spokespeople had refused to be specific as to what they were alluding with their accusations that there is SCO-owned code in Linux. Moreover, SCO-Caldera either has been unable to, or unwilling to, point to specific SCO-owned code in what it loosely calls Linux.

Many people in the Linux community believe this is an intentional SCO-Caldera strategy aimed at disrupting Linux kernel, GNU/Linux operating system, and Linux software development. Linux community members also believe that SCO-Caldera's strategy is to stifle Linux distribution and Linux software sales, marketing, and deployment.

IBM states that belief in the preamble to its Answer to SCO-Caldera's lawsuit: . . . contrary to Caldera's allegations, by its lawsuit, Caldera seeks to hold up the open source community (and development of Linux in particular) by improperly seeking to assert proprietary rights over important, widely used technology and impeding the use of that technology by the open source community.

If there is SCO-owned code in the core kernel.org Linux kernel, then that tainted Linux kernel code likely would be in every Linux distribution and every Linux-based computer system. This is a particularly key issue not only for the Caldera v IBM lawsuit, but also for SCO-Caldera's ability to attack just about every Linux distribution provider (LDP) and perhaps every Linux-based operating system user.

Note: interestingly, it seems that SCO-Caldera does not own any Unix patents nor does it own the Unix trademark or Unix specification. In March, Allen Brown, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Open Group, told us that The Open Group got the Unix trademark and the Unix specification.

Don Marti, Linux Journal editor, did an interesting patent search in March. He found Caldera has never had a patent assigned to it . . . So, if SCO is interested in throwing the first stone in a licensing war, all they have to play with is copyright on UNIX source code. (Follow the Patents, People, Linux Journal News Notes 6 March 2003) Please also see Microsoft licenses a SCO patent? What patent?, also by Don Marti. Links in Resources section at the end of this article.)

Unfortunately, SCO-Caldera owns the Unix source-code copyrights. If Linux were to have been derived from Unix code as SCO-Caldera is claiming, then indeed SCO-Caldera might be able to mount copyright infringement claims against Linux OS distributors, Linux VARs, perhaps even Linux ISVs and Linux users, and so forth.

Of course whether SCO-Caldera could prevail in such copyright infringement claims is an entirely different matter. We examine that question in an upcoming MozillaQuest Magazine article.

SCO Has Not Shown Any SCO-code in Linux Kernel or GNU/Linux OS

Some two months ago, in our 18 March 2003 article, Alan Cox, Richard Gooch, and David Weinehall Respond to SCO's Linux-Related Claims, we noted that so far SCO had not publicly identified any SCO-owned code residing anyplace in Linux and challenged SCO-Caldera CEO, Darl McBride, to show publicly any such code:

SCO-Caldera's CEO Darl McBride and associates, have failed to offer proof that the Linux kernel and GNU/Linux are derived from SCO-owned Unix source code. Can you, Darl McBride, forthwith and without delay show substantial amounts of Linux kernel and/or GNU/Linux source code are the same as SCO-owned source code? Can you show us any Linux kernel and/or GNU/Linux source code are the same as SCO-owned source code?

Do you, Darl McBride, have articulable proof that Caldera-owned proprietary knowledges, skills, and methodologies were used in Linux kernel and/or GNU/Linux operating system development? If so, what is that proof -- other than a bald assertion?

So far Darl McBride, you have failed to offer any proof of your naked claims! Please, Darl McBride, show us your proof so that we all can see it.

That's still the case. So far Darl McBride, has failed to offer any proof of his naked claims!

  • See SCO Blows More Smoke on Page 2 ----->
  • Stay tuned.


    Please see the first two parts of our series about SCO-Caldera's IP claims plus its intentions to enforce and license its intellectual property rights.

    SCO-Caldera & the GNU/Linux Community: The SCOsource IP Matter

    SCO-Caldera & the GNU/Linux Community: Part 2, Under the Iceberg's Tip



    Related MozillaQuest Articles


    SCO-Caldera v IBM:


    SCO-Caldera & the GNU/Linux Community: The SCOsource IP Matter

    SCO-Caldera & the GNU/Linux Community: Part 2, Under the Iceberg's Tip

    About the "Hey SCO, sue me" Petition


    Caldera OpenLinux 3.1.1 Available

    Caldera OpenLinux Workstation 3.1 -- A First Look


    UnitedLinux, a Divisive Weapon for Caldera's Darl McBride -- Part I

    UnitedLinux, a Divisive Weapon for Caldera's Darl McBride -- Part II

    SCO's Darl McBride and MozillaQuest Magazine's Mike Angelo Discuss Caldera Linux and LSB

    Caldera/SCO 3.1.1 OpenLinux Distribution Gains LSB Certification


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    Don't Forget the Books

    LinuxWorld in New York City -- 21-24 January 2003


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    Copyright 2000-2003 -- MozillaQuest -- Brodheadsville, Pa..USA -- All Rights Reserved
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