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Novell Technology Assurance Program



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October 11, 2007 6:22 pm

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Novell rolled out the new Novell Technology Assurance Program this week, which includes enhancements to Novell’s existing indemnification program, one of the oldest in the industry. As the site says, the program “provides some of the industry’s most comprehensive coverage” against IP infringement claims. When customers buy any product from Novell, they are protected with copyright, patent, trademark and trade secret coverage. Check out the site for more details.

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6 Comments

  1. Hi Kevan, can you please explain how the updated NTAM will help Novell customers in regards to the recent patent infringement case filed against Red Hat and yourselves?

  2. By:Kevan Barney

    Those are two separate topics … the NTAP extends to customers, and the filing you refer to is against Novell, not our customers.

  3. Kinda missing the point – if the court issues an injunction and/or finds Novell guilty of infringement then there will certainly be an impact on your customers, and isn’t it a point of law that end users are also liable for patent infringement – wasn’t that the whole point of the MS covenant, to take the possibility of Microsoft going after Novell ‘customers’ away, however unlikely that may have been?

    How does the NTAP (sorry for calling it NTAM, dunno why I did that) come in to play to assure Novell customers that they can deploy SUSE with confidence?

  4. By:Charles

    And ironically enough the company that filed the suit, IP Innovations, uses Red Hat and Apache to host their web site.

  5. By:Kevan Barney

    I obviously can’t comment specifically about the suit, but this situation is no different than any patent challenge, whether open source or otherwise. The point of the NTAP is to provide a similar level of protection to our customers of Linux as we’ve traditionally done for our proprietary products. At the NTAP site, you can see specifically what it provides for customers, and compare it to what assurances other software vendors provide their customers.

  6. By:Charles Durst

    This is terrific news! This is the kind of patent (and other IP) coverage that Free Software-based businesses SHOULD provide. Even the FSF would like it.

    Because of the Microsoft patent deal, several FOSS projects have been afraid that Novell-contributed code might knowingly contain MSFT patent violations. The theory is that if MSFT can’t come after Novell’s cusomers, why would Novell care about whether MSFT could sue any other Linux users?

    This new sort indemnification program makes it clear that allowing [non-MSFT] patent violations in Linux code would not be in Novell’s best interest since they would be liable for their customer’s infringement-by-use.

    Now you can safely drop the patent part of the Microsoft deal and still be able to assure your customers that they have no Linux-based IP worries.

    I look forward to hearing such an announcement.
    Until then I’m staying with Ubuntu.

    – A former SUSE customer and booster

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