IBM, along with Intel, both have given to a fund created to defend companies that use Linux against copyright lawsuits filed by the SCO Group.

As NewsFactor reports, the fund is administered by the Open Source Development Lab (OSDL) and possibly could be used to defend any of the companies SCO targets in demanding license fees for Linux use.

The legal battle began when SCO filed suit against IBM in March of 2003. Since then, SCO has widened the range of its intellectual-property protection fight to include hundreds of Linux-using companies across the tech industry.

Gathering contributions from industry players “is another example of OSDL expressing leadership in marshalling enterprise-Linux adoption,” Forrester analyst Ted Schadler told NewsFactor. “It’s a bit of an insurance policy for enterprises thinking about Linux.”

Schadler said he thinks other companies will contribute funds over the coming weeks.

The OSDL legal-defense fund so far has raised $3 million, with a goal of reaching $10 million. IBM and Intel have not publicly disclosed the size of their contributions.

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