Feeds

EC to Microsoft: not so fast

Code licensing may not be enough

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Microsoft may not be off the hook with the European Commission (EC), despite this week's sweeping promise to license Windows Server communications source code.

An EC spokesperson has reportedly called it "premature" to assume that access alone to the code would solve the problem of Microsoft's failure to comply.

Microsoft had hyped its licensing offer, by claiming the company is "going far beyond European Commission's March 2004 decision and its legal obligations to provide technical specifications".

The Commission in March 2004 had ruled that Microsoft had abused its dominant market position on the desktop to harm the competition in low-end servers and media players.

"The company hopes to dodge the EC's threatened $2.4m-a-day fine for non-compliance with the EC's ruling that it open up Windows. Microsoft's offer would allow software developers to view, but not alter, the Windows source code.

Unfortunately for Microsoft, the EC seems to be aware of the difficulties with a similar Microsoft program in the US - the Microsoft Communications Protocols Program (MCPP) - covering the release of Windows communications protocols.

MCPP was created by Microsoft in August 2002 to demonstrate "good will" and help minimize the impact of the, then, pending anti-trust settlement with the US Department of Justice (DoJ) and prosecuting states.

It has been consistently criticized and "substantially" revised during its four-year life, with Microsoft compelled to reduce the price it charged ISVs to license Windows protocols, to eliminate nondisclosure agreements (NDAs) with ISVs, and to slash the amount of paperwork associated with licensing.

MCPP came in for its latest criticism this week, ahead of the company's offer to the EC, with the DoJ accusing Microsoft of having "fallen significantly behind" in submitting technical documentation to officials overseeing its program.

In a new twist, Microsoft said it would offer the DoJ the same terms for the MCPP for licensing of Windows protocols as it has proposed in Europe on sever protocols to "foster consistency between both licensing programs." ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
Google+ goes TITSUP. But WHO knew? How long? Anyone ... Hello ...
Wobbly Gmail, Contacts, Calendar on the other hand ...
Preview redux: Microsoft ships new Windows 10 build with 7,000 changes
Latest bleeding-edge bits borrow Action Center from Windows Phone
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Microsoft promises Windows 10 will mean two-factor auth for all
Sneak peek at security features Redmond's baking into new OS
DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner
Google opens Inbox – email for people too stupid to use email
Print this article out and give it to someone techy if you get stuck
Redmond top man Satya Nadella: 'Microsoft LOVES Linux'
Open-source 'love' fairly runneth over at cloud event
prev story

Whitepapers

Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
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?
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.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.