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Thread: MS offering to buy Yahoo ???

  1. #141
    LMStone's Avatar
    LMStone is offline Moderator
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    Default Protection for NE Customers?

    Dear Zimbra,

    The $350 million that Yahoo paid for Zimbra represents less than 1% of the offer price Microsoft has made for all of Yahoo.

    From a purely financial perspective, Microsoft could easily elect to stop development of Zimbra if it so chose, as one way to try to protect its flagship Exchange product.

    Open Source users of Zimbra have some good protection against this possibility: the license. Open source Zimbra users could continue to use and develop Zimbra for as long as they like, even if Microsoft fired every Zimbra employee the day the acquisition closed.

    Network Edition customers unfortunately have less protection. The Connectors, backup routines and other non-GPL code bits we get to use only so long as we have an NE license.

    I would therefore like to make two suggestions to Zimbra/Yahoo management, please:

    1. Please consider depositing the non-GPL Zimbra code in a kind of source code escrow. In the event of an acquisition (by Microsoft or any other party) where the acquiring party either stops or starves development of Zimbra below some appropriate level, the non-GPL code is automatically released under the GPL.

    This first suggestion is intended to mirror an individual's bequest to a charity. Upon the individual's death, the charity receives the bequest.


    2. Please also consider extending the expiration of all NE licenses to at least 24 months from today, and make the NE licenses cancelable by Microsoft/Yahoo only in the event of non-payment or other breach by the customer of the contract terms now in force between Zimbra/Yahoo and its NE customers.

    This second suggestion is intended to give NE customers at least a two-year window in which to migrate to a different platform, should they so desire.

    Thank you Zimbra for considering these suggestions.

    With best regards,
    Mark

  2. #142
    kosmo is offline New Member
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    Default Article about the future of Zimbra

    There is a very interesting article and discussion about the future of Zimbra here:
    Groklaw - What Will Happen to Zimbra?
    I suggest the Zimbra team release the Open Source version under de GPLv3 in order to protect the project against hostile apropriation by Microsoft or any other competitor.

  3. #143
    kosmo is offline New Member
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    Default Proposal to guarantee the future of Zimbra

    Please Sirs of Zimbra/Yahoo!: Take into consideration releasing Zimbra (at least the "Community/Open Source Edition") under the GPLv3 in order to avoid Microsoft (or any other hostile attacker now or in the future) to close the code and bury the project. Zimbra is Nº 1 alternative to MSFT's Exchange and releasing it under the GPLv3 would guarantee a continuity of the current community of users, developers and contributors, fostering an environment where it can develop beyond the fear of proprietarization, oblivion or patent-related attacks.
    Please do consider this very interesting discussion about the future of this wonderful project here:
    Groklaw - What Will Happen to Zimbra?

  4. #144
    jonnyd is offline Starter Member
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    Default

    Interesting. Assuming MS do buy Yahoo, there are two different problems.

    Problem one; Will existing users be pushed in the direction of Exchange?

    Inevitable. MS aren't going to devote resources to development of two competing systems. Their track record of buying up and killing competition goes back to almost their beginning. They will tear out all the good stuff and add it to Exchange, then spit out the shell. This will take a couple of years.

    Problem two; Will new users be prepared to take up Zimbra?

    No. With such a big question mark over its future, corporate users won't touch it with a bargepole.

    Unfortunately this will only serve to 'justify' the eventual discontinuation of any work on Zimbra. The final words you'll hear from MS will be 'Well, we were quite prepared to carry on supporting it, but nobody wants it'.

    The equation is simple. If MS buy Yahoo, Zimbra is doomed. Not that I'd expect you to give what I say any special value, but having canvassed a few impartial IT opinions, no other end result makes any sense.

    Tough, this business thing, isn't it?

  5. #145
    zzzzsg is offline Senior Member
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    I am always wary about FOSS which have a commercial version.

    FOSS is alright if it is some low-level or common application supported by some university or foundation co-funded by a few big industry players, e.g., apache, mozilla, cyrus, postgre, subversion, cvs, etc, etc.
    Zimbra does not fit this category. Zimbra wants and needs to make money. Programmers have bills to pay, you know.


    Quote Originally Posted by drdre View Post
    Guys i was taking in my daily tech news when i came across this article that MS (microsoft) has offtered to by Yahoo...

    Now if this does happen, what would happened to us FOSS users ??? I know yahoo didnt change anything about Zimbra ... but i know MS is different...

    hrm..
    Last edited by zzzzsg; 02-05-2008 at 03:11 PM.

  6. #146
    langs's Avatar
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    I think the only salvation here is if a Yahoo + Google alliance goes through and they beat off the MS offer. The Y! board already feels that the $31 share price offer is too low, so won't be recommending the MS deal to it's share holders I'd imagine.

    We have all been around long enough to know Microsoft has a habit of buying competitors to eleminate them, or they take it and apply their development philosophy to it which in most cases is just as bad and something you were trying to avoid in the first place.

    MS = No more Zimbra and I'd have a hard time believing anything different, right now I am hoping like nothing else that Y! doesn't go with the offer, not just because of Zimbra and the personal headache it'd cause me as a NE user, but because of the broader implications for the net.

    MS idea of a ads based internet just gives me nightmares.

  7. #147
    John Norton is offline Starter Member
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    Question Questions and suggestions for Zimbra. If there's a merger

    Seeing as Zimbra was just acquired by Yahoo. Was there a back out clause to buy or get the product back or resale it? This is usually added to protect customer base and commitments from issues just like the one Zimbra finds it customers in now!.

    You know Microsoft will destroy the Zimbra product. It has the same base architecture model as Exchange and they will not what to support it, but try to get the current customers migrated to Exchange thus eliminating Zimbra R.I.P.

    Zimbra / Yahoo management should look to sell the product as a condition of the merger if it happens. I would look to other large companies like IBM as they have been trying to find a alternate enterprise Email solution for their customer base. As many don't like Domino or are looking for something other then exchange. This is what the whole "WorkPlace" product offering was suppose to address but we all know it didn't work out well. They drop the messaging and other WorkPlace projects. ( Just too much time and money and not enough features). They do better acquiring technologies and integrate with their other products. Not to mention they support Open Source projects and love Linux and Java.

    IBM could benefit from such a mature product and your client base would have long term support and relationships. Let face it! As you seen in the forum, it not going well and clients are worried.

  8. #148
    langs's Avatar
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    Of all the companies that I can think of that would look after Zimbra, I'd rather like to see Sun acquire it.

  9. #149
    fselendic is offline Loyal Member
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    Worried is a small word.

    We are just finishing 5 months negotiations for a rather big project that has Zimbra in its core.

    Of course, customer found out about possible merger, and, of course, I had to spend few days again to try to explain, project and guarantee that Zimbra will be here in 5-10 years. Totally unneeded risk management if you ask me.

    I know that Zimbra can't just GPL the damn thing, but something more than a "everything will be all right" CEO letter is needed.

    It was hard enough explaining customers to put relatively unknown Zimbra in the center of their messaging company needs, we and them don't need anther rounds of discussion about longer term prospect for a product (which is really great product, btw.)

  10. #150
    meltingrobot is offline Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by langs View Post
    Of all the companies that I can think of that would look after Zimbra, I'd rather like to see Sun acquire it.
    I would rather see Redhat acquire than Sun.

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