[Samba] Re: [expert] Microsoft - The settlement that isn't

Bill Studenmund wrstuden at wasabisystems.com
Fri Apr 19 09:33:01 GMT 2002

On Fri, 19 Apr 2002, Denis Vlasenko wrote:

> On 18 April 2002 17:33, Bill Studenmund wrote:
> > Ahh, here's a quote from the definitions:
> >
> > 1.4 "IPR Impairing License" shall mean the GNU General Public License, the
> > GNU Lesser/Library General Public License, and any license that requires
> > in any instance that other software distributed with software subject to
> > such license (a) be disclosed and distributed in source code form; (b) be
> > licensed for purposes of making derivative works; or (c) be
> > redistributable at no charge.
> So, Samba license:
> "... this license does not require *other software* distributed with Samba to
> (a) be distributed in source form;
> (b) be licensed or purposes of making derivative works; or
> (c) be redistributable at no charge.
> ..."

I think they are refering to other software distributed with the code that
implements what Microsoft has patented. i.e. the other software in the
same program.

> > So it does a little more than I said. It also prevents you making code
> > that others would have to license from you (i.e. you can't use their docs
> > to make code that Microsoft has to license from you to use).
> We will weaken license a little just to escape M$ ban.
> (Note that M$ talks about *other software* distributed with Samba,
> why we should place those restrictions on it?

> We will place restrictions on Samba code only.

And since I suspect it's the Samba code that implements what Microsoft has
patented, I think that's what Microsoft has in mind. :-|

The real questions are: what exactly do the patents cover, do the patents
seem like they'll hold up in court (they didn't try to patent ftp for
instnace), and what can be done to either not infringe on the patents, or
reimplement the patent-infringing code with code covered by a
GPL-compatable-BSD-style license.

Take care,


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