Novell, Red Hat win verdict in Linux case

Bloomberg News / May 1, 2010

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Red Hat Inc. and Novell Inc. won a verdict in a case brought by a Texas company that claimed their Linux-based products infringed patents for ways to share icons across computer workstations.

IP Innovation LLC, a unit of Acacia Research Corp., accused Red Hat and Novell of infringing three patents that cover a computer-based graphical user interface that spans multiple workplaces, and lets users access icons remotely, according to court documents. A jury in Marshall, Texas, yesterday sided with Red Hat and Novell’s defense that the patents were invalid.

Red Hat, based in Raleigh, N.C., is the world’s biggest seller of Linux operating system software and makes money by packaging Linux, a competitor to Microsoft Corp.’s Windows, with extra features.

Novell, based in Waltham, is the second-biggest maker of such software.