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back to article Microsoft threatened on antitrust non-compliance

As surely as night follows day, so Microsoft is regularly upbraided for not complying with the US government's landmark 2002 settlement for breach of antitrust laws. Now, six years into a seven-year settlement monitoring process, presiding settlement judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly has told Microsoft's she doesn't think it's going …

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Dead Vulture

While we're on the subject

it would have been nice to have been reminded of what the state of play is wrt the $1.4billion (and further daily?) fines levied on MS for similar offences by the EU. Have they actually paid any of them, are the fines still accumulating, are MS going to fund their share buyback with money that should be used for paying fines, etc?

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/07/07/microsoft_launches_ec_fine_appeal/

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Habitual ...

A word occasionally heard in court.

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Stop

Is anyone surprised by this??

I mean seriously, M$ not fulfilling it's obligations to the courts who would have thunk it?? Of course they have not in the past nor will they ever comply with the order in any way except (possibly) at the last minute. And that compliance not being 100% anyway due to various bull shit excuses. Like it or not daddy Gates' law firm is very well placed, very powerful and able to draw all of this out as long as it takes. Especially with the full faith and backing of the M$ piggy bank.

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Coat

Nothing to see here

MS trying to hamstring their competitors by displaying monopolistic behaviour. Nothing new there...

Please wake me up if they actually get fined or split up, like proposed when this anti-trust process first started.

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Bronze badge
Gates Horns

lower the boom?

Not that I expect the corrupt US legal system to actually do anything to one of its shining star corporations, but it would be nice if they finally lowered the boom on this company and did something other than express concern.

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Silver badge

Original penalty was the best!

Divide up the OS part and the application part. Then they would need to publish the interfaces. Couldn't get around it at all. Unfortunately the judge couldn't be convinced at all. Once again Microsoft gets away with out penalty. Nothing new.

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Gates Horns

Oh C'mon, Seriously!

Microsoft is already diversifying itself. They do eHealth are big in government business and all is funded with a rock solid Windows base. It is so obvious they are going to want antitrust compliance to avoid a split.

Going strong as current, the fortune some-hundreds will continue to pay up software assurance, windows upgrades, even more Microsoft software - just because the Redmond strategy works that way.

Example,.. Exchange 2007 is the last version to support "Public Folders" if you want you can stay at Exchange 2007 for some 10 years to come, yet - Microsoft ist pretty much the only company that breaks out a feature completly in an upgrade. Oh yea "Public Folders" are okay, but I need the new bloat of SharePoint. Then I guess people are luckily paying for another Windows server, for a SharePoint server, for some hundred SharePoint CAL's, and Staff Training. This is the Microsoft way of business.

People don't necessarily want to have a choice, that is why Apple and Microsoft do good business and Linux on a desktop is still for the dire crack if the preconfigured stuff is not sufficient (ie. you need to install more software)

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Boffin

documentation not enough

Those enforcing such actions should also be requiring provision of test cases for all APIs affected by the anti-trust judgement including source code for a complete test suite available on non-discriminatory terms - i.e. fully published and available for reuse within proprietary and open-source software without affecting the license terms of the competing product. The offender should be able to demonstrate that a typical programmer with no previous exposure to it can operate this suite and be able understand how to reuse code within test cases within a reasonable period of access to it. The test suite should cover both sides of the API - so in the case of an operating system interface tests should cover software that provides and uses this API, e.g. a set of system calls.

I think it very unlikely that Microsoft or any other software vendor would be able to develop and maintain products likely to get into such an abusive monopoly position without having a system as described above for in house use in any case. If they don't they are wasting considerable development effort and the shareholders should be worried about this. It's not as if a system as complex as todays Windows could be maintained without such tools.

Perhaps MSDOS was, but the regulators need more up to date knowledge of how complex software is actually developed to be able to impose appropriate redress.

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Thumb Down

Wow

A profit-making enterprise, that has a duty to its shareholders to make more and more money every year by exploiting its assets, trying to do the bare minimum to satisy their court order. What a surprise.

Sometimes I feel that my money is wasted on things like this. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that monopolies are good things. They stifle competition and innovation, and drive up prices for consumers. What I'm saying is that the current system makes them inevitable - a company's board of directors can be held responsible, and sued, for making decisions that they know will reduce the profits and share price of a company, even if it benefits consumers by increasing innovation and competition in the market.

What I'm saying is that anti-competition legislation is pointless and a waste of money - what is needed is a fundamental change in the system.

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re: documentation not enough

Could be sorted by making MS assert enough information to get WINE working 100% (or as near 100% as genuine MS Windows gets). Ergo, if you try a Windows app under WINE and it doesn't work, either

a) MS have not disclosed properly

b) The application is not compliant (and so can be returned under merchantability laws)

In the case of (a) MS can blame and prove non-compliance of the application and in the case of (b), the application provider can blame MS and prove that. How? By running the program on genuine Windows. If it breaks, the app is wrong, if it works, MS is.

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Anonymous Coward

Ughhhhh I am getting OLDER and my memory is getting LONGER

MS and it's corporate moron award?

Hmmmmmmmmmm Microsoft speak.

Innovation = stealing.

Market ready software = ready for consumers to spend endless years developing the product (crapware) for Microsoft.

Microsoft Anti-Trust (everything Microsoft Antitrust) = Scummy innovation, Wholesale Crapware production and distribution, and being utter bastards to everyone while they do it.

ME = sick of their bullshit and moved to Ubuntu Linux, Open Source and Open Office (.org) software.

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