Feeds

Maritz on… Intel

Did MS see Intel's NSP as a potential platform competitor?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

David Boies for the DoJ roughed Microsoft VP Paul Maritz up about Intel's abortive multimedia system software, NSP, suggesting that Microsoft wanted it squashed because it was a potential platform competitor. Microsoft's Paul Osborne had said in an email dated 15 May 1995 that "Microsoft doesn't want Intel in the system software business because Microsoft doesn't want the operating system to become a commodity". Judge Jackson asked what was meant by "commodity", to which Maritz replied: "In the software business, when you have lots of competitors, each with roughly the same product, then the value of your software is diminished. So by "commodity", we mean here where the operating system wouldn't have the same value because--" The judge finished his sentence: "--there are reasonable alternatives." Microsoft clearly tried hard to discourage Intel from developing NSP, using arguments like: NSP was insufficiently tested; it only worked with Windows 3.1; and migration to Win32 would be difficult. But Bill Gates had another problem, according to notes of a meeting taken by Ron Whittier, who was running Intel's Architecture Labs (and whom Maritz confirmed as "a person of competence and integrity"): "Gates' issue: Fundamental problem with 'free' software from IAL, cross-subsidised by processor revenues." It emerged that Microsoft's real concern was that it was readying Windows 95 and did not want Intel developing 16-bit software, or indeed any software at all. Intel VP Steven McGeady had testified earlier that it was far from clear when Microsoft would be shipping Windows 95, and that the industry expected a further delay, hence the 16-bit development. Microsoft also saw it discouraging some users from migrating to Windows 95 until Intel had a 32-bit version of NSP. Maritz said he was concerned that Intel did not appreciate how much work Microsoft was doing on Internet technologies, but presumably Microsoft had not thought to keep its Wintel partner informed. Relations became very cool, with Gates emailing Maritz on 18 October 1995 that "Intel feels we have all the OEMs on hold with or NSP chill [Microsoft allegedly suggesting to OEMs that they do not take Intel's NSP]. For example, Intel feels Hewlett-Packard is unwilling to do anything relative to MMX exploitation or the new audio software Intel is doing, using Windows 95, unless we say it's okay". Boies went on a fishing expedition about a remark by Gates that Andy Grove "believes Intel is living up to its part of the bargain" but he failed to find any evidence of a bargain in any formal sense. It turned out to be that Intel would drop NSP if Microsoft would support MMX. This was unpopular at Intel so that Intel's software groups wanted to hide what they were doing from Microsoft, according to Grove. Maritz, conveniently, could not remember if Microsoft had attempted to get Intel to agree not to endorse Netscape's browser, despite Gates having told Grove "NOT" ever to say that Intel was standardising on Netscape's browser. In his recross-examination, Boies put it to Maritz that on 20 February 1997, Gates wrote in an email that if Intel had a problem supporting a collaboration between AMD and Microsoft over 24 new op codes, Intel would have to give up supporting Java Multimedia. ® Complete Register trial coverage

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV
Pureed-carrot-in-ice cream C++ surprise
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
Twitter: La la la, we have not heard of any NUDE JLaw, Upton SELFIES
If there are any on our site it is not our fault as we are not a PUBLISHER
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
Facebook to let stalkers unearth buried posts with mobe search
Prepare to HAUNT your pal's back catalogue
Ex-IBM CEO John Akers dies at 79
An era disrupted by the advent of the PC
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?