Novell offers indemnity protection to new SuSE users who buy support package

Suppliers move to reassure users facing threat of legal action from SCO Group.

Suppliers move to reassure users facing threat of legal action from SCO Group.

Novell is offering new users of SuSE Linux, concerned about the ongoing Linux copyright dispute an indemnity against legal action by SCO.

Steve Brown, UK managing director at Novell, said, "One of the inhibitors to users moving forward with Linux had been the worry that a large scale Linux roll-out would be affected by SCO." The indemnity was designed to overcome those fears. "The object of the exercise is to give users peace of mind," he said.

To receive the indemnity, users need to take out a support contract with Novell costing from £5,200 a year. In September 2003 Hewlett Packard said it would offer a limited indemnity to its customers using Linux.

Philip Dawson, programme director at Meta Group, welcomed the offer from Novell. He said, "The indemnity offers commercial users a buffer against SCO."

Butler research director Tim Jennings welcomed the Novell pledge. "It is good news for users to have the option, even if they do not buy the support contract."

In a letter to SCO president Darl McBride, Novell chairman Jack Messman said, "SCO is not the owner of the Unix copyrights."

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