NetApp losing 'spew dot oh' blog war to Sun

Far more interesting than any of the IP claims traded between Network Appliance and Sun Microsystems is the battle being waged between NetApp founder Dave Hitz and Sun Microsystems CEO Jonathan Schwartz. The two executives have decided to make a spectacle of their gripes, trading barbs via their blogs. Lawyers for both sides must feel revulsion, resentment and fear every time one of these loquacious nerds fires up his browser.

On the practical front, the executive disclosures seem to have brought us no closer to the truth. Hitz has backed up claims that Sun's Zettabyte File System (ZFS) infringes on NetApp patents. In addition, he's effectively painted Sun as a type of patent bully that tries to pump money out of rivals by abusing its IP portfolio. Meanwhile, Schwartz has delivered a solid time line of events that seems to prove NetApp actually led the bullying. And, of course, Schwartz stands by Sun's claims not only that ZFS does not violate NetApp patents but also that NetApp's most popular software violates Sun patents.