Its worries were aired on Friday in the delayed regulatory filing of its annual report for the fiscal year ended October 31, 2006.
The 144-page document posted to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Web site contained redacted versions of, which it signed in November 2006.
While much of what was officially released is known, Novell did express concerns that the final, which slipped past its March 2007 deadline, could see Microsoft halting the distribution of Suse Linux, having a financial impact on Novell.
"If the final version of GPLv3 contains terms or conditions that interfere with our agreement with Microsoft or our ability to distribute GPLv3 code,in order to avoid the extension of its patent covenants to a broader range of GPLv3 software recipients," Novell stated in the document.
Another worry is that Novell may be restricted in its ability to include GPLv3 code in its products.
Novell admits in the statement that if its fears become reality, its business and operating results will be adversely affected.
According to the statement, certain software programs are not covered in the Microsoft-Novell pact, opening the door for. The programs named include OpenOffice.org, StarOffice, Wine and Open-Xchange.
Scott McKenzie of ZDNet Australia reported from Sydney.