It doesn't take a genius to work out that Linux is a threat to Microsoft on a number of levels. OK, maybe it’s not going to be the main desktop OS of choice any time soon, but there are several OS markets, and Linux threatens Microsoft on many of them. The solution? Well, in Microsoft's view the solution amounts to scare tactics.

"Microsoft warned Asian governments on Thursday they could face patent lawsuits for using the Linux operating system instead of its Windows software."

Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer warned that Linux violates 228 patents, and that the Asian governments were opening themselves up to the risk of legal action if they used it.

"Someday, for all countries that are entering the WTO (World Trade Organization), somebody will come and look for money owing to the rights for that intellectual property." - Steve Ballmer.

This is well in line with the Microsoft tactic of using the legal system to shut down open-source software. The transgressions of which Microsoft speak are still alleged, and are disputed by the open-source community.