Feeds

Novell's Microsoft antitrust action OK'd

Just don't use the "monopoly" word

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Novell is being allowed to sue Microsoft for allegedly withholding technical information on the inner workings of Windows to harm Novell's erstwhile desktop productivity software.

However, Novell cannot claim that Microsoft Office is a monopoly, even though the productivity suite dominates the vast majority of the world's home and office PCs.

Judge Frederick Motz of the US District Court for the District of Maryland has ruled he would allow Novell's civil case against Microsoft to proceed, based on the US government's antitrust trial against Microsoft that concluded in 2002.

Despite selling both WordPerfect and Quattro Pro in 1996 to Corel, Novell launched this latest legal assault on Microsoft in November 2004 shortly after settling with Microsoft to the tune of $536m over action involving Novell's NetWare business.

Novell's newer suit claims Microsoft used an unfair technical advantage provided by Windows and sharp business practices to rob WordPerfect and Quattro Pro of market share.

According to Novell, WordPerfect fell from 50 per cent market share in 1990 to less than 10 per cent by the time WordPerfect and Quattro Pro were sold in 1996. Office, meanwhile, grew from 20 per cent in 1990 to approximately 90 per cent by 1996. Novell merged with WordPerfect in 1994 and gained Quattro Pro around the same time.

Novell claims Microsoft impaired Novell's ability to build new versions of WordPerfect and other office applications by withholding information about Windows, while Microsoft also integrated "certain" technologies into Windows that were designed to exclude WordPerfect and other Novell applications from "relevant markets."

Motz's ruling appears to have rejected Novell's other claim, that Microsoft used its monopoly power to prevent OEMs from offering WordPerfect along with other rival applications.

Microsoft has in the past blamed WordPerfect and Quattro Pro's performance on "poor business decisions" and "mismanagement" by Novell.®

Related stories

Microsoft goes after Netware
MS and EU inch towards agreement
Judge Jackson is a big fat idiot
Breakup it is judge signs off DoJ MS proposal

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
Sway: Microsoft's new Office app doesn't have an Undo function
Content aggregation, meet the workplace ... oh
Sign off my IT project or I’ll PHONE your MUM
Honestly, it’s a piece of piss
Return of the Jedi – Apache reclaims web server crown
.london, .hamburg and .公司 - that's .com in Chinese - storm the web server charts
Chrome 38's new HTML tag support makes fatties FIT and SKINNIER
First browser to protect networks' bandwith using official spec
Admins! Never mind POODLE, there're NEW OpenSSL bugs to splat
Four new patches for open-source crypto libraries
Torvalds CONFESSES: 'I'm pretty good at alienating devs'
Admits to 'a metric ****load' of mistakes during work with Linux collaborators
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.