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IETF rebuffs SSH creator

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The creator of the ubiquitous secure access protocol ssh says he is considering legal action in his attempt to protect his trademark, after being rebuffed by Internet standards body the IETF.

Tatu Ylönen originally published his secure shell software - used to secure Telnet, web and FTP sessions - under a free software license, inviting others to produce compatible derived works - which if compliant, could be called ssh. In the intervening period, he set up his own business in his native Finland, SSH Communications Security Corp., to sell commercial products based on his code.

More recently however, Ylönen has asked that compatible, derivative software not use the tag ssh, and use some other name instead. This dismayed the many users of OpenSSH, widely used on both software libre OS and closed source Unices.

But the IETF, which is trying to standardize secure shell iniatives, yesterday rejected Ylönen 's request that these eschew the ssh name on the basis that it would set a bad precedent. Ylönen is reportedly considering legal action. ®

Related Links

SSH Communications' legal white paper
OpenSSH

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OpenSSH: the five-year trademark itch

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