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Apple hit with lawsuit over over quick-boot patent first owned by LG

post #1 of 60
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Apple has been hit with a new lawsuit that accuses the Mac maker of violating a patent related to quickly booting a computer operating system, an invention that was initially granted to LG electronics.

The patent in question, RE840,092, is entitled "Method for Quickly Booting a Computer System." The owner of the patent is the company Operating Systems Solutions LLC, based out of Fernandina Beach, Fla.

OSS has accused Apple of violating the patent with its Mac products running the Mac OS X operating system. Specifically, the lawsuit cites the MacBook Pro as an infringing piece of hardware, but argues that any systems running Mac OS X are in violation of the patent.

In the lawsuit, OSS acknowledges that the patent-in-question is actually a continuation of an earlier invention, U.S. Patent No. 6,434,696, first filed in 1999 and granted in 2002. The original owner of that patent was LG Electronics, of Seoul, South Korea.

The lawsuit does not indicate what involvement, if any, LG has in the complaint, or any ties it might have to the current patent. OSS revealed that the original LG patent was reissued in 2004, and issued again in February of 2008 as the OSS patent.

The patent cited in the suit describes a "quick boot process" that includes performing a power-on self test POST and saving the contents of memory and the status of devices that may be attached to a machine. It includes references to "config.sys" and "autoexec.bat" boot files.



"The personal computer system may reboot quickly because of omission of execution of the initial device configuration filed and the automatic batch file," the filing reads. The original invention is credited to Seong-cheol Kang of Korea.

OSS has asked that the court find that Apple has infringed on the patent, and the Cupertino, Calif., company be required to provide lost profits and damages to the plaintiff. The complaint was filed last week in U.S. District Court in the Middle District of Florida, Tampa division.
post #2 of 60
Does an MBA boot quickly due being on a Flash Ram or due to other process? If it is simply fast access to the data this seems a bit of a stretch. I must be missing something.
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post #3 of 60
Yes, because booting the OS a few seconds faster is one of the main reasons people buy Apple computers. They rake in so much profit from this.
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post #4 of 60
I wonder if the patent really applies to anything outside of a Windows-based operating system. The original patent filing references Windows 95 (despite the document being dated 2002), mentions start up files Apple doesn't use, a boot firmware that Apple doesn't use. The patent refiling of 2008 still references Windows 95, as well as BIOS, config.sys, autoexec.bat and win.com.
post #5 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

I wonder if the patent really applies to anything outside of a Windows-based operating system. The original patent filing references Windows 95 (despite the document being dated 2002), mentions start up files Apple doesn't use, a boot firmware that Apple doesn't use. The patent refiling of 2008 still references Windows 95, as well as BIOS, config.sys, autoexec.bat and win.com.

Macs use an EFI firmware for their boot process, not a PC bios, your response is accurate. The references were based on windows PC technology, which Apple computers running BSD kernel have nothing to do with. This is just a frivolous suit by a south Korean based company that has close ties with Samsung. They're teaming up against Apple to fight their right to blatantly copy Apple technology and get away with it.
post #6 of 60
This patent covers every system that isn't Windows as they all omit the config.sys and .bat file. World beware!!

Seriously though, how retarded is a patent that describes a method by which a system doesn't use something?
post #7 of 60
Isn't LG a supplier of LCD screens to Apple ?
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post #8 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by zindako View Post

Macs use an EFI firmware for their boot process, not a PC bios, your response is accurate. The references were based on windows PC technology, which Apple computers running BSD kernel have nothing to do with. This is just a frivolous suit by a south Korean based company that has close ties with Samsung. They're teaming up against Apple to fight their right to blatantly copy Apple technology and get away with it.

So this is actually a fly in the ointment for PC makers trying to copy MBAs not Apple.
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post #9 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by alienzed View Post

This patent covers every system that isn't Windows as they all omit the config.sys and .bat file. World beware!!

Seriously though, how retarded is a patent that describes a method by which a system doesn't use something?

No it doesn't - it may be a silly patent, but it's not that silly.

Only one claim references config.sys and autoexec.bat

12. A The method according to claim 10, wherein said step F determines whether or not the designated boot configuration information is different from the resumed boot configuration information based on changes of CONFIG.SYS file and/or AUTOEXEC.BAT file.

Remember only a single claim needs to be infringed, but claims need to be considered in their entirety.
post #10 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

So this is actually a fly in the ointment for PC makers trying to copy MBAs not Apple.

It depends, the claims do reference a BIOS, but during claim construction that could be interpreted as any bootstrap ROM.
post #11 of 60
what's LG/korea got to do with it?

"The owner of the patent is the company Operating Systems Solutions LLC, based out of Fernandina Beach, Fla."

unless you've got proof that oss is owned/controlled by LG or koreans, to accuse koreans of being behind it sounds like simple racism

what goes around, comes around, apple is just as guilty as every other company with it's snout in the software patent trough

until the patent system is reformed to invalidate the abomination of software patents, this nonsense will continue
post #12 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

Isn't LG a supplier of LCD screens to Apple ?

Yes, and they're about the only major Android maker that Apple hasn't sued, so I actually rather doubt that this troll is an LG front. More likely LG sold this patent back in the past - because if it controlled a patent which it felt Apple infringed it would be keeping it ready for defensive purposes.
post #13 of 60
This reminds me of when Ali G claimed that someone "nicked" his idea for Playstation 2, because when the first Playstation came out, he had the idea that they should come out with one that was faster and had better games and better graphics, and then they did!
post #14 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by zindako View Post

This is just a frivolous suit by a south Korean based company that has close ties with Samsung. They're teaming up against Apple to fight their right to blatantly copy Apple technology and get away with it.

Read the article genius. LG is not suing Apple.
post #15 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by umumum View Post

what's LG/korea got to do with it?

"The owner of the patent is the company Operating Systems Solutions LLC, based out of Fernandina Beach, Fla."

unless you've got proof that oss is owned/controlled by LG or koreans, to accuse koreans of being behind it sounds like simple racism

what goes around, comes around, apple is just as guilty as every other company with it's snout in the software patent trough

until the patent system is reformed to invalidate the abomination of software patents, this nonsense will continue

How is it racism when I simply stated the country of origin? I guess calling the united states president as tar baby and coonskin is not racism but everyday politics. Come on a tech site and reference a country of origin is viewed as racism, shake my damn head.
post #16 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by cloudgazer View Post

It depends, the claims do reference a BIOS, but during claim construction that could be interpreted as any bootstrap ROM.

The patent doesn't cover "any bootsteap ROM", however - it covers the IBM BIOS system as used by legacy wintel machines based on the DOS operating system. A Macintosh doesn't even use an IBM Bios architecture, it uses Intel's extensible firmware interface which is a very different beast. Autoexe.bat is also not a cache as the patent states, but a list of items to start on boot - and if they are not in autoexe.bat, then they are never executed - be it an application or a system driver. MacOS X uses a cahce which, if not present or corrupt, is then ignored and the system then loads the required extensions from /System/Library/Extensions . This patent can't touch MacOS X, even with a deluxe poking stick.

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post #17 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jexus View Post

Read the article genius. LG is not suing Apple.

The patent is owned by LG.
post #18 of 60
Really? config.sys and autoexec.bat? What visionaries... I want to design a general purpose way to speed up booting any computer, as long as it boots the same way Windows does. Brilliant.

Edit: ok, the patent is a bit smarter than that. But still, talk about the quickest way to have firmware designers dismiss your idea...

I remember working on something very similar about 10 years ago, but using OpenBIOS. Silly me, I actually did real work on it. Guess I should have just patented the idea and waited for someone else to come along and do the work for me.
 
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post #19 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by zindako View Post

The patent is owned by LG.

Reading comprehension is a wonderful thing. LG was the oringal owners of the patent, but no longer have it as per the third sentence of the article
post #20 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by coxnvox View Post

This reminds me of when Ali G claimed that someone "nicked" his idea for Playstation 2, because when the first Playstation came out, he had the idea that they should come out with one that was faster and had better games and better graphics, and then they did!


LOL, so true
post #21 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by dcorban View Post

Yes, because booting the OS a few seconds faster is one of the main reasons people buy Apple computers. They rake in so much profit from this.

Fair point.

One of the reasons I own a Mac is because I never actually have to turn the bugger off, so it doesn't really matter how long it takes to boot itself up. If I didn't re-boot my PC at least once every couple of days it got slower and slower and slower.

That said, my PC used to generally decide to re-boot itself from time to time.
post #22 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyb0731 View Post

Reading comprehension is a wonderful thing. LG was the oringal owners of the patent, but no longer have it as per the third sentence of the article

Still, after listening to the NPR program on this subject, the way shell holding companies are employed out there makes it difficult to know who really holds a patent. That's how this Byzantine patent system has been allowed to devolve. LG may actually still control this patent through a sock puppet.
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post #23 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by benanderson89 View Post

The patent doesn't cover "any bootsteap ROM", however - it covers the IBM BIOS system as used by legacy wintel machines based on the DOS operating system. A Macintosh doesn't even use an IBM Bios architecture, it uses Intel's extensible firmware interface which is a very different beast.

You may hope that's what the court's interpretation of BIOS will be, I may hope that's what the court's interpretation will be, but that doesn't mean that's what the court's interpretation will be. Claim construction is a slippery thing, Apple will try to keep the court's interpretation narrow, the plaintiff will try to argue for a broader meaning.

Quote:
Autoexe.bat is also not a cache as the patent states, but a list of items to start on boot - and if they are not in autoexe.bat, then they are never executed - be it an application or a system driver. MacOS X uses a cahce which, if not present or corrupt, is then ignored and the system then loads the required extensions from /System/Library/Extensions . This patent can't touch MacOS X, even with a deluxe poking stick.

The patent never says that autoexec.bat is a cache. I have no idea why you are saying that. The patents claims aren't tied to use of autoexec.bat, or config.sys, the claims are much broader. Sorry but whatever you're smoking it's interfering with your ability to read patents

Edit: They don't even depend on claim construction of the term BIOS, they have some claims that do not use it such as claim 31.

31. A method for quickly booting a personal computer system using boot configuration information related to attached devices and a computer memory that was created and saved in a storage medium during a preceding boot process, wherein the method comprises: a) performing an initial process operation to diagnose devices attached to the personal computer system when the personal computer system is powered on or a reset button is pressed; b) referencing files specifying one or more of the attached devices and executing software to load device drivers into the computer memory and to initialize one or more of the attached devices; c) loading additional files and software to identify and execute any additional programs to be executed prior to initiating normal user operations; d) saving to the storage medium information reflecting a status of the attached devices, the computer memory and/or the additional programs; e) in a subsequent restart operation, checking if the information requires updating; and f) if no updating is necessary, loading the saved information into the computer memory and resuming normal personal computer system operations, thereby bypassing execution of steps (b) through (d) above, resulting in a quick booting operation.
post #24 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by coxnvox View Post

This reminds me of when Ali G claimed that someone "nicked" his idea for Playstation 2, because when the first Playstation came out, he had the idea that they should come out with one that was faster and had better games and better graphics, and then they did!



Exactly - what's next, "an idea whereby an object is activated by touching a 'power' button, switch or toggle"?
post #25 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin Huber View Post

Still, after listening to the NPR program on this subject, the way shell holding companies are employed out there makes it difficult to know who really holds a patent. That's how this Byzantine patent system has been allowed to devolve. LG may actually still control this patent through a sock puppet.

They might, but since LG would really want a rock solid cross license with Apple and not just a few royalties it seems unlikely that if they controlled the patent they would use it anonymously.
post #26 of 60
The first line of defense is and should be a check for prior art. If prior art exists relating to the claims, that is presented first. Only if prior art is set aside do you get into the nitty-gritty of whether the system does what is claimed as infringing. This, on the surface anyway, seems excessively broad and is vulnerable to the prior art defense (if there in fact is any).
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post #27 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

I wonder if the patent really applies to anything outside of a Windows-based operating system. The original patent filing references Windows 95 (despite the document being dated 2002), mentions start up files Apple doesn't use, a boot firmware that Apple doesn't use. The patent refiling of 2008 still references Windows 95, as well as BIOS, config.sys, autoexec.bat and win.com.

Notice it wasn't filed in east Texas, wonder if that has anything to do with them passing loser pays. We need country wide tort reform.
post #28 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by cloudgazer View Post

You may hope that's what the court's interpretation of BIOS will be, I may hope that's what the court's interpretation will be, but that doesn't mean that's what the court's interpretation will be. Claim construction is a slippery thing, Apple will try to keep the court's interpretation narrow, the plaintiff will try to argue for a broader meaning.



The patent never says that autoexec.bat is a cache. I have no idea why you are saying that. The patents claims aren't tied to use of autoexec.bat, or config.sys, the claims are much broader. Sorry but whatever you're smoking it's interfering with your ability to read patents

Edit: They don't even depend on claim construction of the term BIOS, they have some claims that do not use it such as claim 31.

31. A method for quickly booting a personal computer system using boot configuration information related to attached devices and a computer memory that was created and saved in a storage medium during a preceding boot process, wherein the method comprises: a) performing an initial process operation to diagnose devices attached to the personal computer system when the personal computer system is powered on or a reset button is pressed; b) referencing files specifying one or more of the attached devices and executing software to load device drivers into the computer memory and to initialize one or more of the attached devices; c) loading additional files and software to identify and execute any additional programs to be executed prior to initiating normal user operations; d) saving to the storage medium information reflecting a status of the attached devices, the computer memory and/or the additional programs; e) in a subsequent restart operation, checking if the information requires updating; and f) if no updating is necessary, loading the saved information into the computer memory and resuming normal personal computer system operations, thereby bypassing execution of steps (b) through (d) above, resulting in a quick booting operation.

Especially the first part as bios's effectively have been doing so for years. Think about the boot drive configuration and boot order choices, urn assignments and the like. I suspect Apple could have the patent invalidated in short order.
post #29 of 60
Why not,

This is no more or less stupid that what Apple is suing others for and others are suing Apple for.....

Pretty soon every one will be suing everyone for everything.....
post #30 of 60
Saving a shutdown state file is patentable?
post #31 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by sranger View Post

Why not,

This is no more or less stupid that what Apple is suing others for and others are suing Apple for.....

Pretty soon every one will be suing everyone for everything.....

You live in Georgia. My lawyer will be along shortly to explain the terms of my lawsuit against you.

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post #32 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

Especially the first part as bios's effectively have been doing so for years. Think about the boot drive configuration and boot order choices, urn assignments and the like. I suspect Apple could have the patent invalidated in short order.

You mean the first part of the claim? That's irrelevant, the entire claim has to be covered by a piece of prior-art, just as the entire claim has to be applicable for a device to be found to infringe.
post #33 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Naboozle View Post

Saving a shutdown state file is patentable?

Yes or at least it would have been if you got in there early enough, and in this case the priority on the patent is from 1999. Did you read the Personal Audio patent? They were effectively patenting a device that could use a playlist, and somehow that patent survived invalidation.
post #34 of 60
If AI ever creates a forum that automagically delete posts from the stupidos like in this thread I'll sue their asses off. Not because I created a technology that can do that, but I work at Google* and thought of it first.

*Actually I don't work at Google, so I should ban myself for posting such a stupid ...post.

Cheers!
Note to self: don't post on forums after dinner with girlfriend and a bottle of Montepulciano.
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post #35 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by zindako View Post

Macs use an EFI firmware for their boot process, not a PC bios, your response is accurate. The references were based on windows PC technology, which Apple computers running BSD kernel have nothing to do with. This is just a frivolous suit by a south Korean based company that has close ties with Samsung. They're teaming up against Apple to fight their right to blatantly copy Apple technology and get away with it.

Apple's OS's do not run a BSD kernel. you lose.
post #36 of 60
No wonder the USA economy is losing its grip. Far too many companies are focussed on hiring lawyers to contest patent wars against successful and innovative companies like Apple rather than hiring engineers and scientists to drive innovation and the design and development of quality products.

Get rid of the lawyers and the financial wanker/bankers on Wall Street who can only protect past economic wealth and invest in people who can actually create new economic wealth. And get rid of those pathetic conservative 'flea party' politicians in Washington who can only see the world through their rear view mirrors.

The future of the USA economy must depend on the future of innovative companies like Apple, not parasitic companies that seek only to destroy it or stiffle its innovative spirit. Otherwise your proud economic 'rooster' will become just another 'feather duster' in the economic history books.
post #37 of 60
These patents must die. All the giants simply patent the most ridiculous stuff, blocking small companies in creating innovating software. You can't do jackshit nowadays without infringing software patents.

It's gone out of control.
post #38 of 60
Without reading much about the patent of the case, and taking the summary as the facts, I find this patent to be non-applicable. No BIOS. No autoexec.bat. No config.sys. The patent does not cover Apple. Not even for Windows booting which is not something any Mac does out of the box.

EFI is not BIOS. While BIOS means Basic Input/Output Operating System, BIOS is not EFI. That's like saying Mac OSX is like DOS because they both have the words Operating System in their names. The patent is very specific and does not apply to any OSX-based Mac.

Next case, please?
post #39 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by umumum View Post

what goes around, comes around, apple is just as guilty as every other company with it's snout in the software patent trough



No, there is a huge difference. Steve keeps getting hit on by these damn patent trolls who have never innovated, while at the same time, other companies rip off Apple's IP and Apple is forced to sue them because the rip-ff artists refuse to negotiate in good faith.
post #40 of 60
Patent troll is just not strong enough. Patent Parasite, Patent Leech or Patent Vampire are better descriptions. Its probably not the only way they survive; I am sure they have side jobs like closing orphanages and destroying crops.
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