Sun CEO says NetApp aims to blunt open-source efforts

Schwartz also disputes lawsuit charge that Sun demanded license for WAFL technology

Sun Microsystems CEO Jonathan Schwartz on Thursday used his blog to dispute Network Appliance's charge that Sun's ZFS file system technology infringes on seven NetApp patents.

NetApp made the charges in a lawsuit filed Wednesday in a Texas federal court.

In his blog, Schwartz also challenged NetApp's contention that Sun had sought licensing fees for the storage firm's use of WAFL (Write Anywhere File Layout) or other technologies. Instead, he said that NetApp contacted Storage Technology before Sun acquired it in 2005 through a third-party "intermediary" seeking to discuss acquiring undisclosed patents on storage technology. He did not elaborate on the state or details of those talks in the blog.

Following the acquisition, Schwartz said Sun decided not to sell the patents, but would provide the technologies sought by NetApp under licensing agreements. He noted that NetApp was not interested in licensing the technology.

"Instead of engaging in licensing discussions, NetApp decided to file a suit to invalidate them," Schwartz wrote in his blog. "To be clear, we never filed a complaint or threatened to do so, nor did anyone, to the best of my knowledge, in the ZFS community."

In a statement, Sun said that the lawsuit is proof that NetApp views the open-source ZFS technology as a competitive threat. The company also said the lawsuit is a "direct attack on the open-source community."

Analysts have said that the lawsuit could become a test case for open-source software.

Said Schwartz in his blog: "The rise of the open-source community cannot be stifled by proprietary vendors. I guess not everyone's learned that lesson."

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Brian Fonseca

Computerworld

Comments

Comments are now closed.

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Shopping.com

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?