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SCO: No plans for new lawsuits

There's work enough to be done in pending cases against IBM, Novell, AutoZone and others, CEO says.

The SCO Group has no immediate plans to file additional lawsuits in a campaign to exert its control over Unix intellectual property used in Linux.

Chief Executive Darl McBride is telling the software maker's partners that he is satisfied with the list of cases already pending in various courts, company spokesman Blake Stowell confirmed Wednesday.

"Our strategy right now is to focus all of our legal resources on the current litigation with IBM, Novell and AutoZone," Stowell said in an e-mail. "The outcome of these cases will set a precedent for how we will proceed with any future litigation."

McBride has been meeting with SCO's distributors and developer community this week at the company's annual SCO Forum convention in Las Vegas.

The company contends that the increasingly popular Linux operating system infringes its Unix intellectual property, an argument that is central to lawsuits against Unix licensees IBM and DaimlerChrysler, Linux user AutoZone, and Linux sellers Novell and Red Hat. SCO was quick to point out that it has no intentions of backing off those claims, as McBride still asserts his company can win the lawsuits.

But in late July, SCO saw its chances against at least one of the defendants reduced, when a Michigan court granted most of DaimlerChrysler's motion to dismiss its case. Intellectual-property attorneys have said the ruling does not necessarily set a precedent but that it could make it harder for SCO to pursue its overall campaign against Linux.

In addition, SCO's suits against AutoZone and Red Hat have been stayed, or partially stayed, pending results from the IBM and Novell cases. If the company were to file additional suits, it could face similar rulings.

McBride has been emphasizing SCO's products at the conference, rather than its litigation, amid the company's struggle to remain financially viable as it wages its court battles. Earlier this week, SCO announced an updated version of its OpenServer Unix software, as well as a new developer program dubbed SCO Marketplace Initiative, meant to lure individuals to contribute work on the company's open-source products.