USL vs. BSDI documents

In view of the interest in the newly-launched suit by SCO against IBM, I thought it might be of interest to make available some of the documents from an earlier case. Here USL, at the time the owner of a predecessor of the intellectual property now controlled by SCO, sued BSD Incorporated. The University of California was added to the suit soon after it began.

These files were obtained via FTP from the UUNET server in 1992 and 1993 (that is, at times approximately corresponding to the dates encoded in their names). I picked up all the things that seemed relevant. Similarly, UUNET may have chosen documents, from those publicly available, that seemed relevant to them. UUNET and BSDI had significant relationships.

The files are as I found them. There are some strange characters in them; whether these result from an OCR process or character-set strangeness in computer originals I do not know.

Some of the records in the case apparently remain sealed, in particular I have never seen the details of the final settlement, which occurred after Judge Debevoise did not grant the injunction that USL sought.

These files are absolutely plain text (not HTML, and with just NL characters separating lines). They seem to show up OK in browsers. I tacked on a ".txt" to the actual file names.

In what seems to be reverse chronological order, the files follow: the ruling, listed first, is perhaps most relevant.

Frank Sorenson has more recently turned up the docket for the case; it's visible here (and also at

The case continued for some months after the documents listed at the top, and there were further decisions over the summer of 1993, turned up by Sorenson. These are references to his archive. The first listed appears to be the same as the 930303.ruling above, but it is in HTML, and contains footnotes not in the earlier version I collected:

After the March ruling, the Regents of the University of California filed a separate suit in the California state court system. The University's complaint, kindly supplied by Harlan Wilkerson and Frank Sorenson, is here, as is a license from UCB to AT&T:

new A Groklaw contributor, one 'dburns', recently (Dec 2004) obtained a copy of the settlement (signed 2/4/1994) between USL and UCB of the matter: the PDF version of the whole thing is copied here; the Groklaw site ( has a text rendition and their commentary. My own commentary is just that it contains no surprises, but is good to have.