Sunday, March 1, 2009

Microsoft's Cold War Against Linux

Microsoft is open source's biggest threat. It paid SCO money to sue Linux companies. It voiced the message that Linux is used for illegal software activities, a cancer that will destroy software innovation, has a high ROI (Return on Investment) and is developed by uneducated programmers. It has spread rumors about software patents affecting the Linux kernel, calling open source users communists and claiming that Linux is unstable.

Since the beginning of this cold war to now the Linux community had responded in several forums with absolute anger and hatred for Microsoft which will continue until the company goes belly up. The fight with Microsoft has made Linux stronger by creating special foundations aimed at fighting patents, educating companies and hiring open source programmers.

Today's economy has for the first time allowed the world to see how vulnerable Microsoft truly is. It has shown how weak Microsoft has become during the cold war against Linux. The path that Microsoft followed to kill its competitor instead of innovating has now become a painful indicator of the wrong choice.

Can Microsoft survive a big mistake during today's time? Now that Vista has failed. Linux is stronger than ever. Companies by the thousands are using Linux to make money instead of paying Microsoft for their technology. It is a risk Microsoft is taking when it sues TomTom on the Linux kernel. No matter what the intent/reason is. If Microsoft angers the open source community and scares companies big and small it will certainly seal its death.

There was a time when Microsoft was so powerful that the collective strength of 13 states could not sue Microsoft. It appeared that Microsoft was above the law and almost everyone was brain washed by their world wide success. Americans had great pride knowing that Microsoft represented the best in computer technology. I imagine, if you have enough money, power and corruption you can make almost 80% of the world believe that you are the only solution to their problem.

It has monopolized the operating system market and Office suite. This allowed Microsoft to crush any small company that tried to develop something better. It had intentionally stopped thousands of companies from competing against it. As more vendors were hooked into just making software for its operating system. The alternative would be considered company suicide as Microsoft would crush them with its mighty weight. As it did many other times in the past as a demonstration of its power.

So, how come an operating system created by a student in Finland and developed entirely world wide on the Internet cause Microsoft so much trouble? Well, Linux just gain momentum due to the fears embedded into big companies like IBM and SUN. These two companies had thousands of employees that worked with Microsoft Windows. Imagine if Microsoft would alter its license and force companies to pay them every year. Even if they did not develop anything during that time. Microsoft called this Enterprise License 6. All of a sudden this new Linux OS appeared to be something of a savior/bargaining chip. It took a lot of time for Linux to gain significant market shares in the server space. It took a lot of time for Linux to gain acceptance in the proprietary market. It took a lot of time for Linux to become ubiquitous around the world. That time has come and Microsoft has had enough and it is now playing the final move in its chess game. Will Linux get checkmated or not? This will be the outcome that will unveil itself in the next few years.


Anonymous said...


Nice article. Agreed, linux has come a long way baby! However when we are talking about microsoft as the opponent, all bets are off. There really literally isn't anything that they and their lawyers will not do to wage war on progress, common sense, and honest business practices.

One can only hope that we are armed and ready with enough money, resources, people, etc. to more than offset whatever their crooked lawyers want to cook up.

According to the Linux Foundation, the linux server market is set to be about 50 billion dollars in the next few years. So I guess if the linux movement continues to grow at the same pace, in the future M$ will be seriously hurting by comparison. I just wish there were more concrete metrics that provided a little more of a statistical hard-and-fast 'know'; rather than a 'wish' or a 'hope' on the subject.

CoolBreezeOne said...

Thank for your comment. I am in complete agreement regarding Microsoft's tactics.