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Microsoft gets Amdocs to sign licence agreement to use Linux on servers

The 'cancer' pays off
Wed Jul 25 2012, 11:19

SOFTWARE LICENSING OUTFIT Microsoft has managed to get Amdocs to sign a patent licence agreement for using Linux servers.

Microsoft's recent flirtation with Linux suggested the firm had finally started to warm up to the kernel that is used by operating systems such as Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Canonical's Ubuntu, however it seems that the reason for its interest in Linux is due to the licensing opportunities it presents. The firm announced it managed to get Amdocs to pay up simply for using servers that run Linux-based operating systems, which should worry just about every company with a server.

Microsoft didn't provide many details relating to the licensing agreement signed with Amdocs, however it did say that cash will change hands in the direction of Microsoft.

Horacio Gutierrez, corporate VP and deputy general counsel of the Intellectual Property Group at Microsoft said, "This agreement with Amdocs adds to the more than 1,100 patent license agreements Microsoft has entered into over the last decade. Microsoft's licensing program ensures respect for its world-class intellectual property portfolio while at the same time making available to others the result of its multi-billion dollar annual investment in research and development."

Microsoft has been pursuing an aggressive licensing policy with Google's Android operating system, which also uses the Linux kernel. However Microsoft's ability to persuade companies to pay up simply for running servers with Linux-based operating systems is a worrying development, as many firms deploy freely available Linux distributions such as Debian and CentOS on servers.

It seems that Microsoft has managed to extract money out of something it once called 'a cancer'. µ


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