SCO-License Invoicing Without Merit
SCO's recently announced billing of Linux users for proportedly using SCO Code in the Linux kernel, according to the LIVE Linux Association, is completely without merit.
"This new attempt obviously is a pure public relations maneuver," said LIVE-Board member Daniel Reik. "SCO can obviously lay out no proof for their allegations. As we already laid out, SCO itself has been distributing the Linux kernel as free software under the GPL. Therefore there is no way for SCO to make any valid claims."
This view is also shared by the industry publication "Computerwoche" (Computer Week), and referred to Open Source advocate Bruce Perens. One of the presentations SCO made at the SCOforum convention was supposed to prove that Unix code was illegally copied into Linux. Bruce Perens inspected the origin of the 15 lines of code in question, which according to SCO were copied without permission from System V, for which SCO has authorship rights.
According to Perens, these lines of code were also released under the BSD (Berkeley Software Distribution) License. Therefore it is allowable to use the code in Linux. The 15 lines of code are in a portion of the memory management components of Linux.
"In Germany, according to a legal order, SCO has already committed itself to stop claiming Linux operatingsystems contain illegally gained intellectual property from SCO Unix. The SCO Group will, according to the order, also stop claiming that end users are liable for the use of Linux, that they have to fear fines or punishments, or that Linux is unauthorized derivative of Unix. The punishment in Germany would have been a fine of 10,000 Euros.
The Linux-based enterprise operating system United Linux, that was jointly developed by SuSE, Turbolinux, Conectiva, and SCO, will continue to be supported by SuSE without reservation. We fulfill all UnitedLinux commitments regarding our customers and partners, regardless of any actions that SCO undertakes, or any claims that they announce.
We have asked SCO to release statements indicating specific infringements. SCO has still refused to do this. Furthermore, we have no indication that SCO has tried to directly inform us that SuSE Linux products contain unauthorized code.
We use routine processes to thoroughly verify that we conform to all legal
requirements for all code released in our products, whether they are Open
Source or proprietary components.