Page Two

By Peter Galli  |  Posted 2003-09-24 Print this article Print

For its part, SCO immediately seized on HPs announcement as validation of its claims, saying in a statement, "HPs actions this morning reaffirm the fact that enterprise end users running Linux are exposed to legal risks. Rather than deny the existence of substantial structural problems with Linux as many Open Source leaders have done, HP is acknowledging that issues exist and is attempting to be responsive to its customers request for relief. HPs actions are driving the Linux industry towards a licensing program. In other words, Linux is not free," it said. The move by HP to indemnify its customers puts enormous pressure on IBM, which has so far declined to do so, to do the same. SCO went on to say "Now that HP has stepped up for its customers, SCO once again encourages Red Hat, IBM and other major Linux vendors to do the same. We think their customers will demand it."
Jonathan Schwartz, the executive vice president of software for Sun, also railed against Dell Inc. and IBM for refusing to indemnify their customers. "Sun provides indemnity for all its products, and we believe that that confidence and security matter to enterprises building their business on our products," he told eWEEK.
"That IBM and Dell refuse to offer indemnity suggests theyre using the community to harvest revenue, while leaving risk with those who contribute to open source (who may not get paid), or those who use it (and dont get any protection). Its a real issue—and Sun will protect its customers, and vouch for its products. That Dell and IBM wont vouch for Linux strikes me as hypocritical—especially for IBM, the industrys most pernicious patent litigator—they derive huge revenues from suing companies based on the claim theyre using IBMs technology. "IBM doesnt talk a lot about that. And now theyre saying they wont offer any level of formal protection for Linux customers. That they dont need it. On the one hand theyre suing companies based on claims of stolen IP, and on the other, theyre delivering products and refusing to give customers the security that IBM stands behind the intellectual property. Maybe its me, but I dont understand," he added.

Peter Galli has been a financial/technology reporter for 12 years at leading publications in South Africa, the UK and the US. He has been Investment Editor of South Africa's Business Day Newspaper, the sister publication of the Financial Times of London.

He was also Group Financial Communications Manager for First National Bank, the second largest banking group in South Africa before moving on to become Executive News Editor of Business Report, the largest daily financial newspaper in South Africa, owned by the global Independent Newspapers group.

He was responsible for a national reporting team of 20 based in four bureaus. He also edited and contributed to its weekly technology page, and launched a financial and technology radio service supplying daily news bulletins to the national broadcaster, the South African Broadcasting Corporation, which were then distributed to some 50 radio stations across the country.

He was then transferred to San Francisco as Business Report's U.S. Correspondent to cover Silicon Valley, trade and finance between the US, Europe and emerging markets like South Africa. After serving that role for more than two years, he joined eWeek as a Senior Editor, covering software platforms in August 2000.

He has comprehensively covered Microsoft and its Windows and .Net platforms, as well as the many legal challenges it has faced. He has also focused on Sun Microsystems and its Solaris operating environment, Java and Unix offerings. He covers developments in the open source community, particularly around the Linux kernel and the effects it will have on the enterprise.

He has written extensively about new products for the Linux and Unix platforms, the development of open standards and critically looked at the potential Linux has to offer an alternative operating system and platform to Windows, .Net and Unix-based solutions like Solaris.

His interviews with senior industry executives include Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Linus Torvalds, the original developer of the Linux operating system, Sun CEO Scot McNealy, and Bill Zeitler, a senior vice president at IBM.

For numerous examples of his writing you can search under his name at the eWEEK Website at


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