Lindows throws in the tow - l

Changes name to end MS legal action...

Linux distributor Lindows is changing the name of its operating system to Linspire. The company hopes "this puts a halt on the international lawsuits."

Microsoft has been busy suing the company in the US and in Europe alleging that Lindows is too similar to Windows. After failing to persuade the US courts the software giant filed trademark lawsuits against Lindows in Finland, France, Sweden, the Netherlands and Canada.

The case became ever more surreal with Microsoft lawyers claiming that Lindows first changed name Lin--s is pronounced "Lindash" "which bears an auditive resemblance to Windows".

Michael Robertson, chief exec at Lindows, said: "Last week, Lindows won in French courts when Microsoft was denied a preliminary injunction. Despite our victories in the United States and overseas, a name change is still necessary to counter Microsoft's strategy to sue us in courts around the world. We're hoping that this puts a halt on the international lawsuits."

The company aims to have rebranded all its software in the next two weeks. Lindows will remain as the corporate name but Linspire will be used for all software. The company asked customers for suggestions for a new name and received hundreds including Linvu, Door and LinIUS.

The two-year fight with Microsoft will continue in the US. ®

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