Storage Soup

Jun 26 2008   1:53PM GMT

Litigation update: Sun 1, NetApp 0

Beth Pariseau Beth Pariseau Profile: Beth Pariseau

According to a blog posted today by Sun’s general counsel Mike Dillon, at least one of the patent-infringment counts is off the table in court, after the US Patent Office (PTO) granted a re-examination request filed by Sun.

With regard to one NetApp patent, the ‘001 patent, the PTO has issued a first action rejecting all the claims of this patent. Based on the positive response we received from the PTO, we asked the trial court to stay a portion of the litigation. Obviously, it doesn’t make sense to go through the expense and time of litigating a patent in court if the PTO is likely to find it invalid. The court agreed with our request and at least one NetApp patent has thus far been removed from the litigation.

NetApp started all this by filing its ZFS lawsuit against Sun with great fanfare last September, but Sun has been the aggressor ever since.  Sun countersued NetApp’s original suit and accused NetApp of violating Sun’s patents.  It tacked on another lawsuit in March alleging patent infringement related to storage management technology NetApp acquired when it bought Onaro in January.

This is the first of six reexamination requests filed by Sun. Dillon said Sun expects to hear more throughout the year.

NetApp refused comment on the latest developments and a survey of NetApp’s many executive blogs hasn’t turned up any further discussion, though some of Dave Hitz’s testimony is now being made available by Sun online.

6  Comments on this Post

 
There was an error processing your information. Please try again later.
Thanks. We'll let you know when a new response is added.
Send me notifications when other members comment.

REGISTER or login:

Forgot Password?
By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy
  • Beth Pariseau
    Horses#!t. Sun was the aggressor from Day 1, continuing the demands on NetApp that StorageTek had initiated before it was acquired by Sun - culminating in a specific demand for $36.5 million from NetApp to license StorageTek intellectual property (that NetApp denied it was infringing) well before NetApp responded with its suit. Apparently you've been as easily taken in by Sun's propaganda as so much of the rest of the world has been - but as a reporter you really ought to consider yourself a bit more responsible for actually investigating your statements before making them public.
    0 pointsBadges:
    report
  • Beth Pariseau
    netapp was the first to litigate. the post is about the litigation. hence, i began it with netapp's suit. you are correct that there were discussions that lead to that lawsuit, but as to the nature of those discussions, there are only a few people who really know what happened--and so far, publicly, the facts of those discussions are under dispute.
    0 pointsBadges:
    report
  • Beth Pariseau
    I'm afraid that your statement "NetApp started all this" seems considerably more general than your explanation above suggests: if your intent was as limited as you claim, then your choice of phrasing was unfortunate. And the letter sent by Sun to NetApp demanding $36.5 million well before the beginning of any court action is, as far as I've seen, under no dispute whatsoever.
    0 pointsBadges:
    report
  • Beth Pariseau
    well, a less than ideal choice of words is a far cry from being "taken in by Sun propaganda", so let's call us even. :)
    0 pointsBadges:
    report
  • Beth Pariseau
    Indeed: my apologies for having responded appropriately to what you said, rather than to what you now say you meant.
    0 pointsBadges:
    report
  • Beth Pariseau
    Litigation in this manner never results favorably for either side. They both need to sit down at the table and hash it out.
    0 pointsBadges:
    report

Forgot Password

No problem! Submit your e-mail address below. We'll send you an e-mail containing your password.

Your password has been sent to: