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Gartner Recommends Holding Onto The SCO Money

timothy posted more than 10 years ago | from the like-mel-gibson-in-ransom dept.

Caldera 455

benploni writes "George Weiss of Gartner has published a paper with some interesting recommendations regarding SCO. They include 1) Keep a low profile and do not divulge details on Linux deployments. 2) Until a judgment in a case would unequivocally warrant it, Linux users should not pay SCO the license fees it has asked for to settle its allegations of infringement of intellectual property rights. 3) Do not permit SCO to audit your premises without legal authorization. 4) For customers of SCO Open Server and UnixWare, an unfavorable judgment could cause SCO to cease operations or sell itself. That could harm future support and maintenance. Just in case, prepare a plan for migrating to another platform within two years. There's more, but are the analysts finally catching on?"

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DEAR GOD THE FAGGOTRY IS THICK IN HERE (-1)

CmdrTaco (troll) (578383) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523085)

lucky for you this first post is doubleplusungay.

Slow learners (5, Interesting)

shystershep (643874) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523089)

We believe that these moves compromise SCO's mission as a software company.

No news here if you've been keeping up the story on /., but some good points -- although most are common sense. I knew analysts weren't all that bright or quick on the uptake, but it looks like they eventually do get there sometimes. But what I can't figure out is why they think SCO is a software company . . .

"software company" (5, Insightful)

siskbc (598067) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523278)

But what I can't figure out is why they think SCO is a software company . . .

Analysts are required to maintain some degree of objectivity and avoid controversial statements. That said, if you read between the lines, he basically said just what we've all been saying.

From Gartner:

We believe that these moves compromise SCO's mission as a software company.

If he thought SCO was still a software company, he would have said "We believe that these moves compromise SCO's ability to remain profitable." He's stating, quite clearly, that because these moves make it impossible to remain profitable as a software company, they only make sense for SCO as a litigation manufacturing company. In other words, they're changing their "mission," as he puts it.

He can't say that SCO are a bunch of litigation-happy jackasses that deserve to be sued into the stone age (at least in print). But he can, and did, say things that readers can translate as such.

All in all, it sounds like he completely gets it, if you read between the lines a tad.

Red Herrings Eat Profits (5, Insightful)

dolo666 (195584) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523096)

"Just in case, prepare a plan for migrating to another platform within two years."

Maybe once the plans to migrate are prepared fully, smart employees will push for migration citing the existing contingency plans as existing (hey, we planned to move in 2003), and show how cheaper/better life could be without the SCO. At least with that plan, even the most obtuse managers would see the truth.

Funny how the legal fees of a legal aggressor company like SCO prove that overextending yourself is a bad business model. They're like Rome! But at least they are setting the bad example, so that other businesses with money won't dare go after the Open Source community so readily next time around. I say it looks like we are proving ourselves to the traditional red herring pundits.

IANAL, but wouldn't it be wise for everyone to just wait out the SCO? They are doing their damndest to ruin their own business reputation, so the rest isn't far off anyway. I mean it's obvious, right?

Re:Red Herrings Eat Profits (5, Insightful)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523232)

Remember though, we had a few 800 pound gorillas in the form of IBM and Novell.

Far more Earth shattering was the USL vs. BSD lawsuit. BSD went from being on the ropes to routing USL badly. Rumors are that part of the sealed evidence showed the much of Unix was actually lifted from BSD. Especially impressive because it was pretty much Berkley defending itself. There were no industry players coming to bat.

Why wait? (2, Insightful)

i_want_you_to_throw_ (559379) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523097)

Just in case, prepare a plan for migrating to another platform within two years.

Why wait? Migrate now to something less controversial. Really though, this is a well done paper and really explains it well. Gartner goes into the real dollar concerns of this litigation.

Linux is a commodity and as such can be provided by many companies. RedHat has pretty good support , flames of hellfire not withstanding their decision to go only enterprise. Then again if you're using SCO you're an enterprise anyway.

Re:Why wait? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523139)

>> Why wait? Migrate now to something less controversial.

You mean windows? Cause linux is just as controversial and SCO Unix right now.

Re:Why wait? (4, Insightful)

DarkBlackFox (643814) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523164)

What would be considered less controversial? With SCO as the center, they seem to have roped Linux and now BSD into the controversy. Migrating from Unix to Linux wouldn't be a bad idea, but it wouldn't clear you from controversy- on the contrary, if you are an existing customer of SCO and they find you moving away, wouldn't that be more incentive for them to slap you with an invoice for the "infringing linux" deployment?

Of course, it is important to migrate off a sinking bohemoth of a ship, but I doubt it would be any less contraversial given the players involved.

Re:Why wait? (1)

jhunsake (81920) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523244)

wouldn't that be more incentive for them to slap you with an invoice for the "infringing linux" deployment?

Why tell them anything? Just don't renew the contract. When they call, just hang up on them. The safest route is to never talk to them again, about anything.

Re:Why wait? (1)

Carnildo (712617) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523199)

ust in case, prepare a plan for migrating to another platform within two years.

Why wait? Migrate now to something less controversial. Really though, this is a well done paper and really explains it well. Gartner goes into the real dollar concerns of this litigation.


Migrate to what? Unix and BSD are both "controversial", and SCO products are out on the risk of SCO going out of business. Microsoft products are "ok", but I've never seen anyone recommend them for "big iron" machines. I suppose VMS is a possibility, but does anyone still use it?

Re:Why wait? (1)

gabriel-dialupusa (555359) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523323)

Solaris.

Re:Why wait? (3, Funny)

Newspimp (723202) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523361)

Wang VSOS 7.53 seems to be very non controversial. I bet users could get great deals on ProDOS 3.3 for Apple ][. Maybe there are even a few copies of OS/2 3.1 hanging around somewhere? As long as we're at it, I haven't heard a single litigious thing from CP/M lately. Let's use that!

They can't say that! (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523215)

They don't want to publicly say "don't wait" because that could land them in the shit. Rather they sow the seeds of doubt and let the PBH join the dots.

Re:Why wait? (1)

tlayne (20529) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523304)

Then again if you're using SCO you're an enterprise anyway.

Only if you define Enterprise in some nonstandard way. SCO built it's former business on smaller companies -- the kind of place that has no idea what operating system they are running because they just bought a turn-key business system from a VAR.

Of course, Red Hat would say that all businesses should have been using Enterprise Linux all along and that Red Hat Linux was only meant for the home user/geek crowd.

How do I apply? (5, Funny)

Chewie (24912) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523111)

Man, I want a job at the Gartner group. It seems their methods go something like:

1) Something happens
2) Side with big business and release a paper
3) Wait until popular tide changes
4) Release new paper contradicting old one.

Shit, I could do that all day. Sign me up!

Re:How do I apply? (1)

sfjoe (470510) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523136)


Correction:
2) Release a blindingly obvious paper

That's exactly why many call them anal-ysts (4, Funny)

melted (227442) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523145)

'cause they don't know jack shit! We once had Gartner do market analysis for us, and when the guy came over to present it, a couple of his pie charts showed wrong percentages. The percentages he had on his slides were adding up to something like 112%, not 100. Of course he got caught and laughed at. We haven't used their services since then. :0) Our management can pull better numbers out of their ass.

Re:That's exactly why many call them anal-ysts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523291)

Umm, why do percentages have to add up to 100% exactly? If I ask a group of people to check a box beside the name of each operating system they use, 10% might say Linux, 10% might say Apple, and 90% might say Windows. This is perfectly feasible even thought the numbers don't add up to 100%.

Re:That's exactly why many call them anal-ysts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523357)

you're an idiot.

percent also per cent.

Out of each hundred; per hundred..

n. .

pl. percent, also per cent One part in a hundred: The report states that 42 percent of the alumni contributed to the endowment. Also called per centum. .

pl. percents A percentage or portion: She has invested a large percent of her salary. percents Chiefly British. Public securities yielding interest at a specified percentage. .

Re:How do I apply? (5, Funny)

chill (34294) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523191)

Man, I want a job at the Gartner group. It seems their methods go something like:

1) Something happens
2) Side with big business and release a paper
3) Wait until popular tide changes
4) Release new paper contradicting old one.

Shit, I could do that all day. Sign me up!


It wouldn't surprise me if you were now sued for a DMCA violation -- reverse engineering their business practice!

You're forgetting where the money comes from (1)

burgburgburg (574866) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523287)

5) "Suggest" that companies hire you as a consultant. Those that do get listed by you as top 3 market leaders. Those that don't get listed as dead ends.
6) PROFIT!!!

Give me some of that gravy, uh huh!

Now that's a U-Turn (5, Insightful)

Space cowboy (13680) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523117)

... complete with handbrake squeals. Is it just me, or does Gartner appear to just write what they think will go down well, rather than really analyse things.

Of course, we like it when it agrees with what we think (and I think they're right to say what they're saying now, but that just makes me no different from (m)any of you reading this :-)

Simon

Re:Now that's a U-Turn (4, Interesting)

Zapman (2662) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523165)

I'm with a previous poster. I'd love to work as an analyst for Gartner, GIGA, etc. That'd rock.

Short version of how these companies operate:

1) Listen to geeks to figure out what's popular and new
2) push 'new' ideas as the salvation of computing kind
3) write papers, and sell these opinions for insane ammounts of money
4) proffit!
5) Every year or so, get together with your big $$ clients, and have a huge party in some place cool (according to my co-workers, the party Giga threw in Las Vegas was something to behold)

Re:Now that's a U-Turn (3, Insightful)

MoonFog (586818) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523179)

This paper at least seems like it was put together to draw some attention to themselves. It doesn't really say anything that hasn't been said before.
It tells you to wait and see what happens if you are or want to be a Linux customer and have a backup plan in case SCO wins, and it says to wait if you are or want to be a SCO customer, and have a backup plan if SCO loose..
Basically, it could be said with the simple words "Just wait for the whole thing to end"

[OT] Re: hostip.info (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523342)

Uhm, why not seed the databse using whois queries?

And why can I query addresses in reserved blocks like 192.168.0.1?

Shhh..... (4, Funny)

DaRat (678130) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523119)

Elmer Fudd: "Be vary vary quiet. We're deploying Linux!"

Re:Shhh..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523158)

Elmer Fudd: "We wary wary wiet. We're deploying winux".

Re:Shhh..... (2, Funny)

shystershep (643874) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523177)

I'm sorry sir, could you spell your last name for me again? Was that F-u-d-d, or F-U-D?

I'd like to point out that he WAS .. (1)

burgburgburg (574866) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523318)

Elmer J. Fudd, millionaire. He owned a mansion und a yacht.

Register.co.uk says: (4, Informative)

KamuSan (680564) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523124)

We reveal major UNIX(TM) IP violations

Caldera released UNIX source code back in 2002.
http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/4/3410 2.html

Re:Register.co.uk says: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523173)

Are you sure you fully trust that story?

So we set about looking for who could perpetrate such a foul violation. And deep on a warez site of dubious origins, we unearthed a highly incriminating statement.

There we found a script kiddie shameless boasting of his crime. The poster claimed that he'd released "... the ancient UNIX releases (V1-7 and 32V) under a "BSD-style" license. I've attached a PDF of the license letter hereto. Feel free to propogate it as you see fit"

Doesn't seem 100% reliable to me.

Re:Register.co.uk says: (3, Informative)

KamuSan (680564) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523203)

Corroberation from O'Reilly: http://linux.oreillynet.com/pub/a/linux/2002/02/28 /caldera.html Why Caldera Released Unix: A Brief History [..] Things do tend to come full circle. It was Caldera that, on January 23 of this year, disencumbered the entire source code of Unix, up to and including the Seventh Edition (1979) and its VAX port "32V" from which BSD had started the development that led to 4.0BSD. (32V is basically V7, minus some bits that were written in the PDP-11 assembly language, and the remainder was adapted to work on the VAX.) This seems to mean that BSD Unix is, at last, fully disencumbered, even the few parts that couldn't be used in the various BSD systems over the years due to residual AT&T copyrights. Interestingly, Caldera released it under the original BSD copyright. [...]

Re:Register.co.uk says: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523249)

That looks a bit more reputable.

Re:Register.co.uk says: (2, Informative)

KamuSan (680564) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523311)

More interesting stuff:

Twenty Years of Berkeley Unix
From AT&T-Owned to Freely Redistributable

http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/opensources/book/ ki rkmck.html

Describes history of BSD, interesting quote:
[...]The newly blessed release was called 4.4BSD-Lite and was released in June 1994 under terms identical to those used for the Networking releases. Specifically, the terms allow free redistribution in source and binary form subject only to the constraint that the University copyrights remain intact and that the University receive credit when others use the code. Simultaneously, the complete system was released as 4.4BSD-Encumbered, which still required recipients to have a USL source license.

The lawsuit settlement also stipulated that USL would not sue any organization using 4.4BSD-Lite as the base for their system.[!] [...]

Re:Register.co.uk says: (1)

ausoleil (322752) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523322)

Are you sure you fully trust that story?

Read the whole article:

So after a little digging, we traced this serious UNIX(TM) violation to a hacker outfit called "Caldera Inc." The email was datelined 23 Jan 2002.

Perhaps using an assumed identity, the hacker signed himself as "Dion L. Johnson II - Product Manager and one of many open source enthusiasts in Caldera Intl."


Seems like the article, despite it's obviously acerbic tone, it indeed names names and in fact has been verified.

Re:Register.co.uk says: (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523294)

Here, with google you can find these... (keyword: Dion L. Johnson II)

here, [lemis.com]
there, [geocrawler.com]
and some more [glenwud.com] .

I wonder what Mr. Johnson's opinion is about SCO case.

Re:Register.co.uk says: (1)

KamuSan (680564) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523363)

Yup. So, SCO's IP is not completely public domain, but they certainly can't accuse IBM of stealing their copyrighted code, I think. So this is the end of SCO's case then? >-)

Especially with this quote (from my other post):
"The lawsuit settlement also stipulated that USL would not sue any organization using 4.4BSD-Lite as the base for their system."

So SCO can't sue *BSD at all, since they are the inheritants of the settlement.

Sorry NASA (4, Interesting)

grub (11606) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523128)


Keep a low profile and do not divulge details on Linux deployments.

Too bad NASA didn't read that advice. [slashdot.org] :)

Re:Sorry NASA (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523157)

Shut it, whore.

Change your TCP/IP fingerprint (3, Interesting)

hedley (8715) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523134)

If you really want to hide (some who don't want
the hassle do). Then change the fingerprint on
the stack to show up as Win2k or equivalent.

When SCO does its IP addr sweep, you will be passed over.

Re:Change your TCP/IP fingerprint (4, Funny)

silentbozo (542534) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523175)

Anyone have any details on how to do this? I've got some systems that I'd like to cloak as classic MacOS machines to discourage script kiddies from poking at them. They're already locked down, but I figure the more indirection I can throw out, the more likely that they'll go off and bother some other poor sod.

Re:Change your TCP/IP fingerprint (3, Informative)

the_mad_poster (640772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523359)

Yup. [somoslopeor.com]

Re:Change your TCP/IP fingerprint (2, Interesting)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523180)

Heck, why not make it look like an System/360 or a DEC. If you are going for deception, make it original.

Re:Change your TCP/IP fingerprint (3, Funny)

Chibi Merrow (226057) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523210)

So it's kind've like painting goat's blood over your door...

I don't know, I just can't see McBride as the angel of death.

Re:Change your TCP/IP fingerprint (3, Funny)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523289)

More like a snow-angel of slightly bad day.

Re:Change your TCP/IP fingerprint (1)

YetAnotherDave (159442) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523270)

what fingerprinting tools do you use that can give meaningful info with no closed ports?

last I checked, nmap gets puzzled if there are not both open and closed ports, and we all know that exposed internet ports should be either filtered or open (and open on purpose :)

Re:Change your TCP/IP fingerprint (1)

spectrokid (660550) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523330)

You could also do the opposite, and attract SCO goons to a bunch of Win2K servers....

Harm (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523144)

SCO is obviously causing harm with its threats, and people should request an immediate judgement, requiring SCO to submit enough evidence to be successful or face a ruling to the contrary. Then, the evidence would be as simple to get as requesting them from the court. Then, the infractions could be removed from linux (this assuming there actually were any...) to prevent further violation of sco's copyright.

So.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523146)

So not only has sco failed to get money from linux users, it will most likely lose the customers it has. Oh well, I guess the world will just have to go on without sco.

Re:So.. (2, Funny)

Dehumanizer (31435) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523366)

You mean SCO *has* customers?

Oh really? (2, Funny)

zonix (592337) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523148)

You mean the same Gartner Group that recommended people to halt Linux deployment because of all the SCUD (SCO FUD)?

Wait a minute ... no, no, none of this adds up at all! :-)

z

Re:Oh really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523316)

"You mean the same Gartner Group that recommended people to halt Linux deployment because of all the SCUD (SCO FUD)?
Wait a minute ... no, no, none of this adds up at all!"

of course it adds up. ibm is getting testamony from anyone who goes on record saying sco's claims hold water. paid analysts hate to state on record that they have no evidence for their weekly bull.

The bottom line: (-1, Troll)

Greased_Yoda (724757) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523154)

SCO is going to be eaten by it's own lawyers. WORD TO my short and greasy anus-dwelling nigaz.

Crying in his Jello (5, Insightful)

BubbaTheBarbarian (316027) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523155)

Remember Rambus v. World? The same thing happened to them. They tried to sue the world, and lost. In middle of it, Gartner said basically the same thing.

This is a HUGE blow to SCO, to have as respected a group as Gartner say these things about the case. They have basically had all of what they have done over the past 6 months ripped out. No one will pay them for nothing, and even worse, they now have the real possibility of losing alot of their current customers.

Is this why IBM has been so quiet?

Duhryl must be crying in his Jello salad today.

Thank you for comming! See you in hell!

(this post not worth spell checking)

Re:Crying in his Jello (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523292)

Uh Dude,

Rambus won. Stock is doing great.

Maybe that is a better moral to the story, though certainly not the one you intended.

And 5.... (0)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523159)

... Profit!!!

Don't they realize that will severely ... (5, Interesting)

burgburgburg (574866) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523163)

hamper Darl and David's attempts to confuse the investing public into thinking that there is some validity to their claims, thus allowing them to continue to unload their massively overvalued shares? How will Canopy continue to use the overinflated valuation of SCOX to play their shell games and shuffle the monies around (eventually with them ending up in their pockets, of course)?

How utterly irresponsible of Gartner! No consulting contracts for them!

Article Text (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523167)

Event

On 18 November 2003, SCO announced that it would pay $1 million and issue shares worth $7.95 million to Boies, Schiller & Flexner. This law firm represents SCO in its lawsuits against companies using Linux in alleged violation of SCO's intellectual property rights

First Take

Mounting financial pressures have forced SCO to find alternatives to pay Boies, Schiller & Flexner. SCO not only faces the litigation against IBM (scheduled for April 2005) but must also defend counterclaims by Red Hat and IBM. Moreover, after threatening 1,500 Linux users for infringing its intellectual property rights, SCO has declared that within 90 days (or by about February 2004) it will start litigation against one or more Fortune 500 companies with large Linux installations.

SCO has declared in filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that its competitive position could decline if the company can't obtain additional financing. The latest share issue will dilute shareholders' investments about 3.5 percent. It comes on top of a previously announced arrangement giving Boies, Schiller & Flexner a 20-percent share in SCO if the company were sold. SCO also received an investment of $50 million from BayStar Capital in return for 17.5 percent of outstanding shares. We believe that these moves compromise SCO's mission as a software company. Increasingly, the legal and financial aspects of the intellectual property infringement cases will absorb the company's attention, and a law firm will be in an increasingly powerful position to set the overall agenda for its compensation. Therefore, SCO will likely pursue claims against Linux users quickly. Its degree of success will determine the vendor's financial health.

Recommendations:

  • Keep a low profile and do not divulge details on Linux deployments.
  • Until a judgment in a case would unequivocally warrant it, Linux users should not pay SCO the license fees it has asked for to settle its allegations of infringement of intellectual property rights.
  • Do not permit SCO to audit your premises without legal authorization.
  • Your legal counsel should monitor developments and understand the infringement claims.
  • Pressure high-profile Linux vendors to contractually guarantee against infringement claims by covering court costs. Evaluate Hewlett-Packard's willingness to indemnify Linux customers.
  • Fence off the innocuous Linux deployments (such as network-edge solutions) from the performance-intensive ones. Where feasible, delay deployment of high-performance systems until the end of 1Q04 to see what SCO will do.
  • If high-performance Linux systems are in production, develop plans that would enable a quick changeover in case SCO wins a favorable judgment and requires the Linux kernel code to be substantially changed. Unix systems are the best alternatives.
  • For customers of SCO Open Server and UnixWare, an unfavorable judgment could cause SCO to cease operations or sell itself. That could harm future support and maintenance. Just in case, prepare a plan for migrating to another platform within two years.

Analytical Source: George Weiss, Gartner Research

Recommended Reading and Related Research

  • "HP and Linux Users Will Benefit From Legal Indemnity Offer" -- The offer to pay the legal expenses of Linux customers sued by SCO for infringing its intellectual-property rights sets Hewlett-Packard apart from other major vendors. By George Weiss
  • "IBM, Red Hat Lawsuits Will Put Financial Pressure on SCO" -- Enterprises with large future Linux commitments should avoid paying SCO's server license fees because they appear arbitrarily high, represent a concession to SCO's claims and will expose the customers to ever-larger license fees. By George Weiss

(You may need to sign in or be a Gartner client to access all of this content.)

Re:Article Text (1)

DataCannibal (181369) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523300)

Do these wankers actually get paid for writing this?

They're worse than fucking estate agents (I think amercians call then real estatet salesman or something)

What are they doing? (1, Funny)

DroopyStonx (683090) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523168)

They know they have absolutely no case... so what is SCO trying to do, exactly?

Are they just toying with the system for whatever reason? Is the CEO bored so they ask themselves, "How much BS can we get away with before we get arrested and/or the govt. tells us to stop?"

What exactly is going on? They're not stupid. They know that their claims that "their" code was included in Linux distributions is completely asinine.

That'd be like me running of and trying to sue all these corporations because I wanted to buy black shoelaces but purchased a remote control helicopter instead (or something else utterly stupid that wastes everyone's time)..

Re:What are they doing? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523371)

Something utterly stupid that wastes everyone's time? Sounds like /.!

Haha number 3 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523170)

3) Do not permit SCO to audit your premises without legal authorization
Just ask them to come to our premises...

BSD was in SCO UNIX? (5, Interesting)

eddy (18759) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523174)

Check this out:

"Next up: Former SCO employee Jack Craig, now an SDK support engineer at another software company.

[...] While it was later excised and replaced with UDI code, I wonder how the world would take the news that SCO/Caldera paid a contract house in San Jose over $150,000 to port the NetBSD USB stack to osr5! They sure don't mind stealing open source when it suites them!" -- article here [newsforge.com]

This should be researched. McBride has been very admant that it doesn't matter if his imagined IP is removed from GNU/Linux, there price must be paid. Surely then his amazing legal understanding must be extended to his own company, in which case SCO could be a veritable GOLDMINE for the BSD Developers.

Re:BSD was in SCO UNIX? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523224)

SCO/Caldera paid a contract house in San Jose over $150,000 to port the NetBSD USB stack to osr5! They sure don't mind stealing open source when it suites them!"

McBride has been very admant that it doesn't matter if his imagined IP is removed from GNU/Linux, there price must be paid.

Only McBride is arguing that the GPL is invalid, whereas SCO's supposed copyright was in place. Thus, he'd likely try to spin it as there was "no valid copyright violation" involved when lifting from Open Source, but for Linux to copy "proprietary information" is wrong.

Re:BSD was in SCO UNIX? (5, Insightful)

dougmc (70836) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523262)

... to port the NetBSD USB stack to osr5! They sure don't mind stealing open source when it suites them!
To be fair, the BSD license permits this. Is it really stealing if you accept something that somebody else gives you?

(Also, Microsoft has been accused of the same thing -- using *BSD code in their products. And as far as I can tell, this accusation is completely true -- but irrelevant, because it's not illegal or even `wrong'.)

I've always wondered why people who make embedded devices like WAPs and the like chose Linux rather than *BSD -- with BSD they don't have the GPL requirements to open up the source. If you intend to give out the source, fine -- use Linux -- but if you don't, it seems to be that one of the BSDs would be a better choice.

mod parent up as thoughtful (1)

Artifex (18308) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523297)

I've also wondered why *BSD hasn't been used in a few of these devices.

Hypocrisy at least. (1)

eddy (18759) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523303)

Fine, got a little hot-headed there, but it's another nice case of hypocrisy from their side.

Hmm.. not sure if it beats the whole GNU toolchain + Samba thing though.. got to ponder that one.

Re:BSD was in SCO UNIX? (1)

the morgawr (670303) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523268)

umm..hate to tell you, under the BSD license, SCO is allowed to do that.

Re:BSD was in SCO UNIX? (2, Informative)

BJH (11355) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523334)

Depends on whether or not they've preserved the copyright. The BSD license doesn't allow uncredited copying.

Re:BSD was in SCO UNIX? (1)

(startx) (37027) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523295)

except your basic bsd license says "do whatever you want with my code, just 1) leave my copyright notice and 2) there is no warrenty associated with it"

no restrictions on remaining open source, compiling with other licenses, badmouthing the authors, nothing.

Re:BSD was in SCO UNIX? (4, Informative)

GOD_ALMIGHTY (17678) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523315)

Surely then his amazing legal understanding must be extended to his own company, in which case SCO could be a veritable GOLDMINE for the BSD Developers.

The BSD license allows this. This is also the reason many OSS developers prefer the LGPL or GPL to BSD and Artistic licenses. The BSD is a free-market radical/libertarian's wet dream, but the GPL and LGPL constitute a steal all you want but give back approach.

The various BSD teams are fully aware of what people can do with their code and only care if someone else claims copyright over code they wrote. If SCO used BSD code, the OSS community gets nothing, if they had used GPL'd code, the copyright owner (possibly the FSF) could demand everything opened or the code removed plus damages. Under the LGPL, there are more possiblities, depending on how the code was used.

Spend more time analyzing OSS licenses than the SCO case and you'll have a better idea of when to get excited and when to not care.

To be fair... (4, Insightful)

Vexler (127353) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523195)

If you read the article carefully, similar recommendation was also given to Linux users to delay large-scale deployment until the dust begins to settle a bit (i.e. 1st quarter of 2004). Granted, deep down Gartner probably feels, as many of us do, that SCO's days are numbered, but good sense calls for level-headed thinking that should apply to all who are involved - not just a particular subset of the whole.

Article text (-1, Redundant)

The_Bad_Bob (691779) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523196)

SCO's Legal Fees Could Jeopardize Its Software Business
19 November 2003
George J. Weiss
The SCO Group will pay its lawyers $9 million to pursue lawsuits against Linux users. Linux users should keep a low profile and have a contingency plan. SCO customers should have a migration plan in case SCO's legal strategy falters.

Event

On 18 November 2003, SCO announced that it would pay $1 million and issue shares worth $7.95 million to Boies, Schiller & Flexner. This law firm represents SCO in its lawsuits against companies using Linux in alleged violation of SCO's intellectual property rights.

First Take

Mounting financial pressures have forced SCO to find alternatives to pay Boies, Schiller & Flexner. SCO not only faces the litigation against IBM (scheduled for April 2005) but must also defend counterclaims by Red Hat and IBM. Moreover, after threatening 1,500 Linux users for infringing its intellectual property rights, SCO has declared that within 90 days (or by about February 2004) it will start litigation against one or more Fortune 500 companies with large Linux installations.

SCO has declared in filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that its competitive position could decline if the company can't obtain additional financing. The latest share issue will dilute shareholders' investments about 3.5 percent. It comes on top of a previously announced arrangement giving Boies, Schiller & Flexner a 20-percent share in SCO if the company were sold. SCO also received an investment of $50 million from BayStar Capital in return for 17.5 percent of outstanding shares. We believe that these moves compromise SCO's mission as a software company. Increasingly, the legal and financial aspects of the intellectual property infringement cases will absorb the company's attention, and a law firm will be in an increasingly powerful position to set the overall agenda for its compensation. Therefore, SCO will likely pursue claims against Linux users quickly. Its degree of success will determine the vendor's financial health.

Recommendations:

* Keep a low profile and do not divulge details on Linux deployments.
* Until a judgment in a case would unequivocally warrant it, Linux users should not pay SCO the license fees it has asked for to settle its allegations of infringement of intellectual property rights.
* Do not permit SCO to audit your premises without legal authorization.
* Your legal counsel should monitor developments and understand the infringement claims.
* Pressure high-profile Linux vendors to contractually guarantee against infringement claims by covering court costs. Evaluate Hewlett-Packard's willingness to indemnify Linux customers.
* Fence off the innocuous Linux deployments (such as network-edge solutions) from the performance-intensive ones. Where feasible, delay deployment of high-performance systems until the end of 1Q04 to see what SCO will do.
* If high-performance Linux systems are in production, develop plans that would enable a quick changeover in case SCO wins a favorable judgment and requires the Linux kernel code to be substantially changed. Unix systems are the best alternatives.
* For customers of SCO Open Server and UnixWare, an unfavorable judgment could cause SCO to cease operations or sell itself. That could harm future support and maintenance. Just in case, prepare a plan for migrating to another platform within two years.

Not all favorable to Linux (5, Interesting)

JohnGrahamCumming (684871) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523197)

The paper also says:

> Fence off the innocuous Linux deployments (such
> as network-edge solutions) from the
> performance-intensive ones. Where feasible, delay
> deployment of high-performance systems until the
> end of 1Q04 to see what SCO will do.

and

> If high-performance Linux systems are in
> production, develop plans that would enable a
> quick changeover in case SCO wins a favorable
> judgment and requires the Linux kernel code to be
>substantially changed. Unix systems are the best
alternatives.

Which I read as "do your best to not use Linux for the time-being, and if you are be prepared to switch".

John.

Gartner borrowing from the Slashdotter playbook (5, Insightful)

azaris (699901) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523198)

prepare plans to migrate...

Is this Gartner's answer to everything?

MS software insecure - prepare to migrate.

Sun changing licensing terms - prepare to migrate.

SCO threatens Linux users - prepare to migrate.

I've used to seeing "switch to another platform/software package" as the default answer on Slashdot to most articles about potential problems any piece of software in existence, but some people actually pay for these Gartner analyses.

When are people who constantly advocate jumping ship whenever a potential problem appears with a product your relying on in you're business going to stop breathing since you can potentially be poisoned by air-borne pollution?

Re:Gartner borrowing from the Slashdotter playbook (1)

Eberlin (570874) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523293)

Dude, the best thing about analysts is that if you don't like what they're saying, you can always migrate to a different group.

Tomorrow's headline... (5, Funny)

The Wookie (31006) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523200)

"SCO sues Gartner Group"

Re:Tomorrow's headline... (1)

u-235-sentinel (594077) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523353)

Probably for obstruction of justice.

Is this an example of SCOicide?

Of course analysts are "catching on" (1, Funny)

csoto (220540) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523216)

It just took them a bunch of time to finish reading all the SCO stuff on /.

But what do they think about emacs vs vi?

Re:Of course analysts are "catching on" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523310)

But what do they think about emacs vs vi?

They both suck -- prepare plans for migration.

Re:Of course analysts are "catching on" (1)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523314)

Emacs.

Sure it's a little bloated, but all the double-buckey keystrokes feel like home to me. I dig the code development tools for various languages. Heck, I use Emacs under windows as my preferred source editor.

You listen to analysts ? (1)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523222)

There's more, but are the analysts finally catching on?

I reckon it's more interesting to investigate which analysts may have a personal interest recommending SCO stock, which ones may have taken their marbles out of the game (and therefore can recommend against SCO without hurting themselves), and which ones may have received / still receive monetary gifts from SCO or Canopy.

If you followed advices from Credit Suisse First Boston analysts right before the dot-com collapse, you know the above isn't paranoia : analysts can almost never be trusted, because they almost always defend their own interest, or those of their employers, before the interests of the people they give advices to.

Good, maybe SCO will learn the sword of Justice... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523238)

..can cut both ways. An unfavorable judgment and damages levied against SCO would be the perfect punishment.

.."Unix systems are the best alternatives.".. (2, Insightful)

burgburgburg (574866) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523242)

If high-performance Linux systems are in production, develop plans that would enable a quick changeover in case SCO wins a favorable judgment and requires the Linux kernel code to be substantially changed. Unix systems are the best alternatives.

No, BSD is the best alternative. SCO faces an even greater uphill battle to try and imply that they have any IP issues with it, considering the AT&T 1994 settlement.

Yes, I remember that yesterday there were intimations that SCO would be going after BSD next. And while I know Darl is crack-addled and David is clueless, I think there might be a paralegal or an associate around who might be able to point out to them the extreme problems they'd have. Or maybe one judge who'd be willing to just slap them upside the head, as they've long deserved.

Re:.."Unix systems are the best alternatives.".. (1)

EvilTwinSkippy (112490) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523350)

Oh no, let them come. Let them break the seal on the 1994 suit like the seal of the elder gods.

I have this hankering to develop a new distro. Cthulu Linux anyone? Or maybe Hast... (Snarf)

SCO users (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523245)

i was interested in what OSs were being run at a local college where i live and they use SCO's UNIX, if anyone wants to check it out and maybe send them some info enlighening them on their knowledge vaccume since it is a small town university and are typical of small towns being ignorent of what is going on in the world at large.

it is East Central University in Ada Oklahoma http://www.ecok.edu/

here is a copy & paste from their Computer Science webpage (equipment)

Both of our servers are running SCO Unix Openserver 5.0.5. This provides students with an opportunity to work in a "mission critical" and "industrial strength" programming environment. This is consistently a "plus" when employers seek seek new employees.

Nobody is... (-1, Flamebait)

the_mad_poster (640772) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523253)

..."finally catching on" to anything. Nobody cares except us and that doesn't include me. The only people that have migrated from Linux with SCO as an excuse are the people that didn't really want to migrate to Linux to begin with. SCO just happened to be a convenient excuse since they couldn't mount any good technical or financial arguments in favor of staying with Windows or UNIX or whatever in their particular operation.

See, all the folks that count were smart enough to say "hey - SCO is just flapping its gums right now" right from the very beginning and went about their business without making a big deal about it. For the most part, SCO hasn't gotten much coverage from significant media outlets, and what they've gotten was basically just "yea yea, SCO said something else today - here, read it".

Stop deluding yourself. Nobody cares. I don't even think SCO cares. Do yourself a favor and just block Caldera stories from your front page. You'll save yourself a lot of time posting about an issue that only exists in places like Slashdot and is solely sustained by the "media" attention the OSS community and trolls that work for Fortune give it.

Go ahead bastards - mod me Flamebait or Troll even though you know I'm right. I know you're itching to.

I told you SCO (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7523271)

No you didnt

Somebody paid how much for this? (3, Insightful)

cybergrue (696844) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523273)

Somebody paid how much for this? They could have gotten the same advice on Slashdot for free.

Sign of the times (5, Interesting)

bigjnsa500 (575392) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523309)

I feel things are speeding up because the domain

scoclassaction.com

has been registered.

'SCO money'? (1)

civilengineer (669209) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523320)

I object to the choice of words. Its 'my money'. SCO wants it does not mean it is 'SCO money'.

Timmy and Michael (-1)

Clippy (691243) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523329)

I know that Timmy must be SO UPSET with the Michael Jackson "thing", they have soooo much in common.

Bottom line (mirroring prior SCO related thread) (1)

Lead Butthead (321013) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523331)

Did SCO stock price take a dive in light of this recommendation?

It's 2Q04... (2, Insightful)

j0keralpha (713423) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523333)

Do you know where your emergency migration plan is?

Its very like gartner to play both sides of the fence, but i find it interesting that the analyst's true opinion shows out here. Quite aside from SCO's financial woes (lets face it, you'd need the Sultan's treasury to really afford taking on IBM) he doesnt place much faith in any of SCOs bullying, or their case. He basically warns you to sit tight, do nothing, and watch SCO sort of topple over and die. I applaud him for his very sensible advice.

Are the analysts catching on? (1)

ENOENT (25325) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523351)

Those that don't own SCO shares are!

But what about 2.2 kernels??? (1)

rcpitt (711863) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523364)

SCO seems to only be going after 2.4 and later kernels - so, deploy older versions if you can or feel you have to.

I know this leaves those with multi-processor boxen in the lurch, but in the mean time the single processor stuff is getting faster and there may be other options for many/most now.

What a waste of paper... (2, Informative)

herrvinny (698679) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523365)

1) Keep a low profile and do not divulge details on Linux deployments.

How is even a medium size company going to do this? A quick scan of company servers would be enough to see if they're running Linux or not. And even if you do change the servers to say they are Win 2003 or something, what about social engineering? Calling up the company, saying you're MS tech support, and you found a problem with the company's web servers. "But we run Linux." Gotcha! What about companies that have already said they run Linux? Yahoo, Google.

2) Until a judgment in a case would unequivocally warrant it, Linux users should not pay SCO the license fees it has asked for to settle its allegations of infringement of intellectual property rights.

Duh. All techies have been saying this for months.

3) Do not permit SCO to audit your premises without legal authorization.

Why the hell would you allow SCO (or any companies) people onsite for anything except if you're called them first?

4) For customers of SCO Open Server and UnixWare, an unfavorable judgment could cause SCO to cease operations or sell itself. That could harm future support and maintenance. Just in case, prepare a plan for migrating to another platform within two years.

SCO will die in the next 2 years.

good thing in the long run? (4, Insightful)

smd4985 (203677) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523368)

"There's more, but are the analysts finally catching on?"

Perhaps the whole SCO fiasco will be a boon for Linux in the long run. First off, any kind of press is good press. Secondly, the SCO lawsuit forces the media to understand the issues regarding GNU/Linux and free software, so perhaps this will lead to more widespread understanding and support.

To SCO Customers... (3, Insightful)

IA-Outdoors (715597) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523378)

This Gartner guy recommends to SCO customers to be thinking about contigency plans should SCO not be around. Personally, if you are SCO customer you'd be better off doing that regardless. My main justification is that you should not run your enterprise on software built by a company who feels their only way for survival is to sue competitors.

If they had a sound business plan and a good set of products then they would have customers and their bottom line wouldn't require these desperate tactics. The harder decision to make out of all this is what you should switch to. I'd be interested to see how non-linux, non-BSD based posix operating systems (i.e. Solaris) now that SCO is suing everbody.

You know, in the end this SCO thing is probably best settled with ski masks and crowbars.

Migration (0)

jargoone (166102) | more than 10 years ago | (#7523379)

For customers of SCO Open Server and UnixWare, an unfavorable judgment could cause SCO to cease operations or sell itself. That could harm future support and maintenance. Just in case, prepare a plan for migrating to another platform within two years.

Gee, just what platform would be good to migrate to?
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