Microsoft has surprised everyone by donating source code to the open source Samba project under the GPLv3 license.
In a blog post, the Samba project stated that a team of developers posted new code in the project's repositories on October 10, 2011.
It was later discovered the developers who submitted the interoperability code for Windows were Microsoft employees, indicating that the company had decided to donate code to the open source project.
Samba is a set of Windows interoperability programs that allow users to access file and print services in a secure and stable environment on operating systems that support the Server Message Block (SMB)/Common Internet File System (SMB/CIFS) protocol.
"A few years back, a patch submission from coders at Microsoft would have been amazing to the point of unthinkable, but the battles are mostly over and times have changed," wrote Chris Hertel of the Samba team.
"We still disagree on some things such as the role of software patents in preventing the creation of innovative software; but Microsoft is now at the forefront of efforts to build a stronger community and improve interoperability in the SMB world," he added.