OSNews is pointing to the story that Microsoft's SCO Involvement Revealed. “A declaration by SCO's backer, BayStar has revealed that the software Giant Microsoft had more links to the anti-Linux bad-boy. The declaration made by from BayStar general partner Larry Goldfarb has turned up as part of IBM's evidence to the court. Goldfarb says that Baystar had been chucking USD 50 million at SCO despite concerns that it had a high cash burn rate. He also claims that former Microsoft senior VP for corporate development and strategy Richard Emerson discussed “a variety of investment structures wherein Microsoft would 'backstop', or guarantee in some way, BayStar's investment”.
I don't think it's really a surprise that MSFT and SUN are behind the funding of SCO to take a poke at IBM and slow the adoption of Linux through FUD. If you'd like to learn more about this incredibly complex case, GrokLaw is the place to visit. But be warned: it's easy to be dragged into all the fascinating nooks and crannies of the case.
The real question for me is whether MSFT and SUN succeeded in their ventures. SUN has done a turn-around and is re-inventing themselves as the green company with better price/power/performance for the internet. MSFT has… almost shipped Vista. Linux, meanwhile, has moved, up, out and around, scaling to greater multi-CPU architectures, developing a better virtualization story, making huge progress in hardware compatibility, and fielding several worthy desktop competitors. LAMP is not a risky choice for IT; it's a question of which commercially-supported distributions and stacks to choose and ensuring the eager technicians in house get the training they need. If the SCO case cooled enthusiasm and take-up any, it gave FOSS advocates time to get their act together and pay a little closer attention to governance and provenance and licensing terms, cleaning up their houses and getting their story straight. Meanwhile, Microsoft… almost shipped Vista.
If SCO/Baystar/Microsoft/SUN thought that IBM would roll over and settle out of court, they badly miscalculated.