Dad passed me along the link to the slashdot discussion of Microsoft's partnership with Novell. (Usually, its me sending him the slashdot link). On the face of it, the major part of the announcement concerns patent rights MS holds - specifically that it will not assert them against open source developers. The Technology Liberation Front has a good overview of this angle.
What is Microsoft doing here? It's trying to put SuSE developers at ease that they won't be sued. So there's no need to obtain a license from Microsoft. Furthermore, there's no need for sublicensing - which is particularly important for the decentralized nature of open source development.