Feeds

Judge rules Lindows MS settlement claims invalid

But you can keep the software and claim again

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Lindows.com's attempt to submit claims under the California-Microsoft settlement procedure has been rejected by the judge, but people who submitted claims via the msfreepc.com site have still had a reasonable deal. They can keep any software they got from Lindows.com, and the judge has instructed the claims administrator to send them a claims form for them to claim via the court-approved process.

So the would-be claimants got free software and can still claim, while Lindows.com got publicity for itself and the settlement for the price of the software and the legal fees. It's less clear what Microsoft got out of it, apart from succeeding in publicising the settlement some more by taking Lindows.com on. It seems perfectly possible that Microsoft will end up paying out more money, having done this, than it would have if it had left Lindows.com alone.

But it still won't pay much. Microsoft has a theoretical liability of $1.1 billion to be paid in settlement of California's overcharging action, but Californian consumers need to apply for relatively small payouts from the company, so relatively few people will apply. Lindows.com says MSfreePC handled around 15,000 claims with an estimated total worth of $1 million, i.e., a flea-bite.

Microsoft will benefit to some extent from the money that goes to schools, as a fair amount of this will be spent on Microsoft software, while it can also keep a share of any money unclaimed. Whether or not MSFreePC was a publicity stunt, Lindows.com CEO Michael Robertson is entirely correct in viewing the settlement as a charade. Microsoft offers a large headline figure in the sure knowledge that the actual payout will be much smaller, California gets to extricate itself while claiming victory, and nothing changes. The judge's ruling can be found here, while the legal settlement process can be accessed here. ®

Related stories:
MS takes $1.1bn 'hostage' to freeze Lindows out of California case
MS issues take-down to Lindows, redefines 'guilt'

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
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?
Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence
Download Choosing a Cloud Hosting Provider with Confidence to learn more about cloud computing - the new opportunities and new security challenges.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.