Recently, a quiet deal was made between Red Hat and Microsoft that many would have thought impossible. Red Hat made a deal with Microsoft covering virtualization (e.g. their system can run on the other system and vice versa) — that didn’t include patents.
This deal is very different from that signed with Novell, and far less controversial. I find it amazing that Red Hat was able to pull it off! The only money being shifted around seems to cover training employees. Not bad if I say so myself. Really, this can be a good strategy, and really shows that agreements can be made without including patents. Looks to me like patents may not carry as much weight as they used to.