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Google goes back to court over Vista search tools

Won't take 'No' for an answer

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A week ago, a federal judge told Google it should contact the Department of Justice with any complaints about the desktop search tools built into Microsoft's new Windows Vista operating system. But Google has other ideas.

This week, the online search giant filed new papers with Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly - the U.S. District judge who oversees Microsoft's 2002 anti-trust settlement - explaining why it has the right to make its case directly to the court, The Seattle Post-Intelligencer reports.

In an earlier amicus brief filed with Judge Kollar-Kotelly, Google had requested that the court extend the duration of Microsoft's anti-trust settlement as a means of monitoring the OS maker's treatment of Vista's desktop search tools. Google believes that Vista fails to provide ample opportunity to third-party desktop search apps, like its own Google Desktop Search.

But the judge denied Google's request, suggesting that the company voice its complaints through the Justice Department and the plaintiffs in the anti-trust case.

Prior to the judge's ruling, Microsoft and the DoJ agreed to a compromise whereby Microsoft would modify Vista's search setup. But according to its latest court filing, Google is still intent on pursung the matter with the District Court.

"As the developer of a major desktop search product and the company that brought the desktop search issue to the attention of the plaintiffs, Google has familiarity with the issues raised and is well positioned to provide information to the Court," the filing said. Google is not a plaintiff in the case, so it has requested status as amicus curiae, or "friend of the court".®

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