Counting The Change
There's an even more interesting ramification to this new information about the origin of the offending code, and that brings us to the monetary remedy. The SCO lawsuit now seeks $3 billion in damages, up from $1 billion, ostensibly because this code made Linux so competitive that it destroyed the market for SCO UNIX.
So someone answer me this. If the code is identical, how did it make Linux more competitive than SCO UNIX? If both Linux and SCO benefit from this code, it doesn't give Linux the edge, it levels the playing field, doesn't it? After all, it's the same code, isn't it?
If you're still with me, then one must ask the next logical question. If this code made Linux equal -- not superior, equal -- to SCO UNIX in what SCO seems to believe is a critical aspect of the operating systems, then why did Linux stomp all over SCO sales?
Is it possible that people prefer Linux to SCO UNIX for other reasons?
Let's look at this from a slightly different angle. It's a decidedly personal one, but those of you who agree with my opinion might see an interesting consequence to this line of thinking.
Here's the opinion. SCO UNIX is a dog. I recall trying to install and use various versions of SCO Open Server several times. I've had mixed results, but never good results. Most of the time, it was so much trouble to install that I never completed the installation. Obviously others have had better luck, or nobody would be using it at all. But SCO UNIX has always struck me as the most quirky, unfriendly and overall poorly conceived commercial UNIX on the planet. Solaris, HP-UX, Irix, AIX and others are far easier to install and manage, in part because they are more mature and specialized implementations of UNIX, and in part because they are designed to run on specialized hardware instead of unpredictable configurations of Intel machines.