SCO wins shock Unix verdict

SCO will have its day in court after an appeals court found that Novell does not own the rights to Unix after all.

SCO wins shock Unix verdict

In a 54-page ruling the appeals court reversed the 2007 summary judgement of Judge Dale Kimball, which claimed that Novell was the owner of Unix and UnixWare copyrights. The matter will now be decided in a full trial.

SCO professed itself satisfied with the result: “We are pleased that the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals has reversed material aspects of the district court’s 2007 summary judgement against SCO. Importantly, the court remanded the case for trial, and we look forward to the opportunity to present the case to a jury,” SCO says in a statement.

Novell intends to vigorously defend the case and the interests of its Linux customers and the greater open-source community

The ruling also brought strong words from Novell: “Novell intends to vigorously defend the case and the interests of its Linux customers and the greater open-source community. We remain confident in the ultimate outcome of the dispute.”

The SCO saga has been running since 2003 when the company launched a lawsuit against IBM, claiming Big Blue infringed on its intellectual property by including code from Unix in Linux.

It emerged that, having bought the Unix trademarks from Novell a decade before, SCO assumed it also owned the rights to enter into open-source licence deals with companies such as IBM and Sun, as well as other end-user firms.

However, Judge Kimball ruled that Novell, rather than SCO, owned the Unix copyrights. Novell was subsequently awarded $2.5 million in license fees collected by SCO, plunging the company into Chapter 11 Bankruptcy.

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