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SCOTUS Ends Novell's Anti-Trust Cast Against Microsoft 174

walterbyrd (182728) writes in with news about the end of the line for a Novell anti-trust claim against Microsoft. "The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday brought an end to Novell Inc's antitrust claims against Microsoft Corp that date back 20 years to the development of Windows 95 software. By declining to hear Novell's appeal, the court left intact a 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling from September 2013 in favor of Microsoft. The court of appeals unanimously affirmed the dismissal of Novell Inc's claims that Microsoft violated the Sherman Antitrust Act when it decided not to share its intellectual property while developing its Windows 95 operating system. Novell was seeking more than $3 billion."
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SCOTUS Ends Novell's Anti-Trust Cast Against Microsoft

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  • by thaylin ( 555395 ) on Monday April 28, 2014 @01:58PM (#46861163)
    There was more to it than just not sharing its IP, such as deliberately misleading the company, and changing the APIs mid stream to break interoperability.
  • by jedidiah ( 1196 ) on Monday April 28, 2014 @02:07PM (#46861241) Homepage

    That phrase has quite a lot of bogus spin attached to it. They take something pretty mundane and turn it completely inside out. Based on the phrase as stated, you would think that Novell was expecting Microsoft to give up all of it's trade secrets when all it was really expecting was the details of a standard public interface.

    This is just one of the many bad side effects of an overly expansive notion of "intellectual property" and of corporate privelege in general.

  • by Anonymous Psychopath ( 18031 ) on Monday April 28, 2014 @02:47PM (#46861697) Homepage

    I'm not surprised by this ruling at all. The current Supreme Court is very friendly towards businesses acting badly.

    What ruling? They declined to hear the case because there isn't a constitutional challenge.

  • Re:LOL@Novell (Score:4, Informative)

    by MachineShedFred ( 621896 ) on Monday April 28, 2014 @03:09PM (#46861911) Journal

    Novell fucked up when they tried to make everyone pay out the ass for eDirectory, and Microsoft included a reasonable adoption of LDAPv3 in Windows 2000 Server.

    That was the beginning of the end for Novell. Today, the world runs on Active Directory.

  • by Sun ( 104778 ) on Monday April 28, 2014 @03:22PM (#46861995) Homepage

    The Novel narrative is this:
    Microsoft shared the interface with Novel during the beta, encouraging it to rely on it. Then, a few months before release, and after WordPerfect was already dependent on those interfaces, Microsoft changed them and declined to share the new ones with Novel. When Windows 95 finally came out, MS did, in fact, publish those interfaces, but by then it was too late for Novel to ship WordPerfect with Windows 95's launch.

    Had MS not shared those interfaces to begin with, Novel could have worked with an internal implementation.


  • by NotSanguine ( 1917456 ) on Monday April 28, 2014 @03:59PM (#46862387) Journal

    A long time ago.

    Novell owned the network File/Print market and pioneered the e-Directory (NDS) environment. Microsoft was playing catch-up the whole way.

    The biggest problem with Novell was that you couldn't develop applications on the Netware platform. Microsoft offered ISVs the ability to develop software on the platform (Windows) on which it would run. When Novell purchased Unix, I thought that they would fully integrate NCP (Netware Core Protocol) into Unix. This would allow ISVs to develop software on the same platform on which their software would run. Had they done so, Microsoft would have lost the server wars and been relegated to the desktop.

    But Novell didn't do the necessary integration, and the rest is history.

    As I recall, Word Perfect was better than Microsoft Word in almost every respect. In fact, Word Perfect 5.0 is probably better in many ways than the current incarnation of Word. Sigh.

    tl;dr version: Novell killed themselves and Microsoft moved into the vacuum created when Novell imploded. The resolution of this lawsuit just puts the cherry on top of the whole mess.

  • by NotSanguine ( 1917456 ) on Monday April 28, 2014 @07:52PM (#46864235) Journal

    Just press ctrl+shift+F7 to print! Word was about 300 times more usable than Wordperfect, even the DOS versions nobody used. It just led in market share, & people didn't want to lose file compatibility.

    As someone who relied on a word processor for much of my work back in the early-mid 90's, I remember what a piece of crap MS Word was back then. Word Perfect (with the caveat that WP4win was crap), while it did have its peccadilloes, was far superior to MS Word. Feel free to disagree. However if you do, you will identify yourself as someone too young to remember or as someone who just wasn't paying attention. That is all.

The human mind ordinarily operates at only ten percent of its capacity -- the rest is overhead for the operating system.