I wasn't trying to imply that Microsoft CAN'T write a new kernel without outside help. What I meant is that they might want to bring someone end that has extensive experience with building modular style kernels. Just because someone can figure out how to build a hot rod doesn't mean they really want to do it all on their own.
There is something else going on here...Microsoft doesn't choose allies easily - They must have alot more to gain than they lead on.
Just an idea. Could be completely wrong and it's only about patent stuff.