Feeds

Microsoft and Novell to push SuSE Linux sales in China

You're either with us or against us

Website security in corporate America

Microsoft and Novell yesterday announced plans to extend their interoperability alliance by tapping into the increasingly lucrative Chinese market.

The software companies said in a joint statement that they were placing "particular emphasis" on the People's Republic to jointly market and sell Novell's SuSE Linux distribution in that country.

Under the extended agreement, Microsoft will buy certificates for SuSE Linux service and support from Novell and resell them to its Chinese customers.

Microsoft, which kicked off its five-year partnership with Novell in November 2006, said its aim was to make its Windows operating system more interoperable with Linux.

The firms are marketing "supported Linux" in which they collect a fee from software systems that mingle open source programs with Microsoft products including Vista and Office.

"We recognise that our customers want to use Microsoft products in heterogeneous environments, and therefore we are pleased to offer this option to meet customer needs in one of the leading global markets," said Ya-Qin Zang, chairman of Microsoft China.

But it's also a strategic move that demonstrates Microsoft's desire to have its cake and eat it too by extending an agreement with its rival that is, in essence, a patent protection and cross-licensing deal with Novell for its technologies.

The alliance will undoubtedly be slammed by many open source fanciers who will view the deal as Microsoft's latest effort to grab a fee from Linux customers.

It's also worth noting that less than a year ago Microsoft's top lawyer Brad Smith made plenty of threatening allegations about how open source software violates exactly 235 entries in the firm's vast patent portfolio.

Of that total, Microsoft singled out the Linux kernel with claims that it violated 42 of its patents.

Microsoft boss Steve Ballmer told developers in London last October that anyone using open source software from Red Hat, which doesn't have a cross-licensing love-in deal with Redmond, effectively owed him money.

"People who use Red Hat, at least with respect to our intellectual property, in a sense have an obligation eventually to compensate us," said Ballmer.

Last week Red Hat said it had abandoned plans to develop a consumer desktop product for the forseeable future because it cannot compete with the might of Microsoft in that market. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
Not appy with your Chromebook? Well now it can run Android apps
Google offers beta of tricky OS-inside-OS tech
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Greater dev access to iOS 8 will put us AT RISK from HACKERS
Knocking holes in Apple's walled garden could backfire, says securo-chap
NHS grows a NoSQL backbone and rips out its Oracle Spine
Open source? In the government? Ha ha! What, wait ...?
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.