Feeds

Feds fume over Microsoft anti-trust delay

Compliance hold up

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

The US Department of Justice told a federal judge it is unhappy with Microsoft's plans to extend a deadline for supplying technical information to licensees documenting how Windows communicates with operating systems and middleware made by other companies.

Microsoft is required to supply the documentation under a 2001 consent decree that settled a long-standing antitrust lawsuit brought by the US government. Justice Department attorneys deemed initial documentation Microsoft supplied as inadequate, and Microsoft agreed to offer regular revisions. The disclosures are designed to put competing software makers on an equal footing by supplying the information they need to make their products interoperate with Microsoft's monopoly operating systems.

The software behemoth has met three deadlines so far, but said it needed more time to complete the remaining ones. The delay, it said, was needed to account for last-minute protocols added to its upcoming Longhorn Server operating system and those overlooked on previous reviews. The Justice Department isn't amused by the change, which will add an extra report Microsoft must submit and extend the compliance schedule by just under two months.

"Plaintiffs are concerned that Microsoft has not been able to meet its original schedule and are particularly troubled that at this late hour in the program Microsoft is still discovering protocols that should have been included in the original documentation," Justice Department attorneys wrote in a status report jointly prepared by them and Microsoft. They said they are discussing the matter with the company and would report more at an upcoming status conference.

In a section prepared by Microsoft, company lawyers said they have resolved a "substantial majority" of the issues previously raised by the government. They said the delays were the result of changes the company didn't anticipate when it agreed to the schedule in September and that the additions would likely require thousands of additional pages of documentation it is required to file.

The change would bring the total number of revisions, which in court parlance are called a milestones, to six. The new milestone is due on April 3. The last one is to be delivered on July 20.

The Justice Departments concerns aren't the first time Microsoft has been accused of stalling. In January, 2006 US District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, who is overseeing the settlement, described Microsoft's compliance efforts "foot-dragging."

The Justice Department also said it was investigating a complaint Microsoft has received from an unnamed source concerning middleware. The department is also analyzing evidence presented in a separate legal action in Iowa, which was tentatively settled last month. The evidence relates to allegations Microsoft has failed to disclose APIs as required. ®

Today's status report is here.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Britain's housing crisis: What are we going to do about it?
Rent control: Better than bombs at destroying housing
Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media
Rise of Twitter etc creates 'enormous challenges'
Ex US cybersecurity czar guilty in child sex abuse website case
Health and Human Services IT security chief headed online to share vile images
We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie
EC moves to shift status quo at Internet Governance Forum
Oz biz regulator discovers shared servers in EPIC FACEPALM
'Not aware' that one IP can hold more than one Website
Apple tried to get a ban on Galaxy, judge said: NO, NO, NO
Judge Koh refuses Samsung ban for the third time
Pedals and wheel in that Google robo-car or it's off the road – Cali DMV
And insists on $5 million insurance per motor against accidents
prev story

Whitepapers

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
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.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
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?