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Is linux illegal ?

  1. Jun 4, 2003 #1
    Unix accused linux stole its code, true ?
    Linux users have to bear legal liability fro using illegal linux ?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 4, 2003 #2
  4. Jun 4, 2003 #3
    If it does prove to be illegal, I doubt the average user will bear responsibility, but rather the publishers. Since the publishers touted it as "free" and made the product avaliable, they would be the ones in trouble.

    Still, it will most likely end up that companies found to be non-compliant will just by the license for the code or whatnot.
  5. Jun 4, 2003 #4


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    Staff: Mentor

    Linux is open source. There isn't a single entity that could steal anything. However people who have contributed to Linux could have stolen some things.

    So you can't sue "Linux" because there isn't anyone to sue.

    You could sue the makers of "Red Hat Linux" however.
  6. Jun 5, 2003 #5


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    Science Advisor

    We know what Bill Gates would wan'na say to that...:wink:
  7. Jun 8, 2003 #6
    No I think Linus has coded this OS with his own "geniusity" and the code of Unix wasn't open that time. He just followed Unix commands and tried to code that with his knowledge of C programming language.

    If I made a software like MAYA can you say that I have stolen the code from MAYA company no......... never
  8. Jun 8, 2003 #7
    it is not a farce, linux might be banned in near future if IBM lost the case.
  9. Jun 9, 2003 #8
    More than likely it will be quiet simple to replace the SCO code with original code. I read on slashdot that the code they have as evidence is 80 lines long. The linux kernel is ten million lines long. As is most FUD against linux this SCO mish mash is comedy, not serious. Some apparently unresolved issues still are: does this SCO code actually exist, they seem to be keeping it a secret which lines of this publicly available document that is the source code are actually the code in question. Also, as long as no one knows what code is the violating code, they don't know who put the code in. How likely is it that Novell or SCO ( a linux software company ) added Novell or SCO code to the linux kernel. I don't know alot about law but if that is the case, I think that this sharade is extortion. Usually when proprietary software is violating the GPL, the company or programmers involved are notified and given a chance to rectify the situation. What SCO is doing I think is clearly extortion if this turns out to be a crock of crap.

    Last edited: Jun 9, 2003
  10. Jun 14, 2003 #9
    The latest news showed that SCO can threaten IBM and linux,
    bad news to penguin users.
  11. Jun 14, 2003 #10
    My understanding is that Linux was made by Torwald as a POSIX, not a UNIX. POSIX is 'Portable Operating System Interface' and was a collaborated standard work under IEEE (Institute of Electronic and Electrical Engineers) and other computer software consortia, using unpaid volunteers. Its main criterion is performance of computing functions. The only offense would be claiming POSIX status for a system without passing certification.

    UNIX was developed by Bell Labs (now part of Lucent Technologies), but source code was shared with colleges, universities, governments and just about any startup company that wanted it. Later, Bell Lab's mother, AT&T, claimed proprietorship of the UNIX system, but the barn door was shut too late. Other places, like BSD (Berkeley Software Distribution), were also crafting and distributing source code under their name. AT&T's tactic in the 1980s was to sue other companies for using the UNIX name (a trademark) and for using identifiable lines of code. But AT&T sold out its UNIX rights to Novell, who turned it over to a standardization group now called Open Group. So the only offense now would be using the UNIX name without submitting the code to Open Group's tests and receiving a UNIX certificate.

    SCO (Santa Cruz Operation) established its claim through a simplified UNIX system called Xenix. Who cobbled it together? An up-and-coming software company called Microsoft. It was a year before the IBM Acorn project and Bill Gates' first crack at operating software. He was a beneficiary of that free shared UNIX code from Bell Labs.

    link to POSIX --->

    link to Open Group --->

    who owns UNIX? --->
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2003
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