SCO contends that Linux includes copyrighted code from its own operating system, and is asking Linux users to pay $699 per server for a license to use its intellectual property. Under the terms of the agreement, SCO will provide EV1Servers.Net with a site license that allows the use of SCO IP in binary form on all Linux servers managed by EV1Servers.Net in each of its hosting facilities. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
Houston-based EV1Servers currently features Red Hat Enterprise Linux as its primary Linux offering, and recently began offering FreeBSD as well. EV1Servers also has more than 1,000 web-facing Windows 2003 servers as of October.
It’s unclear whether EV1Servers’ move is likely to influence other hosting providers mulling their hypothetical exposure to SCO’s intellectual property claims. If anything, EV1Servers may have handed a marketing tool to competitors courting power users and resellers among the Linux/Open Source user base, where passions run deep regarding SCO’s legal claims. “We anticipate that the initial reaction from some will be negative, and that our competitors may note that,” said Marsh. “Over the long-term, I believe this provides a safe haven for our customers, and that’s our primary concern.”