Seems there is much more to this "joint venture" than meets the eye...
First of, it might be against the GPL to do what Novell has done:
Today Novell and Microsoft announced a partnership in which Microsoft has made some unlikely-seeming promises regarding Linux. What aren't they telling you? First, you can be sure that Microsoft's not out to help a competitor. This announcement paves the way for Microsoft to implement significant control over commercial customer's use of Free Software. And it has significant negative implications for Open Source in general.
Seems like MS will remain the evil giant for now, until they can PROVE that what is said in the agreement was really out of concern for all OS development.