Microsoft returns to EC legal battle

Microsoft has filed a second appeal against the European Commission ruling that it must share certain server software code with rival companies.

Microsoft spokesman Tom Brookes said this latest appeal was motivated by the need to protect its intellectual property rights.

‘Microsoft has filed an application for annulment with the Court of First Instance specifically concerning the issue of broad licenses, in source code form, of communications protocols which are based upon Microsoft’s intellectual property,’ he said.

Although Microsoft and the Commission agreed a compromise of sorts on server code licensing, the terms did not prove acceptable to open source server software developers. Under the terms the server interoperability protocols may not be made public, something that the open source developers find unacceptable.

The European Court of First Instance was therefore asked to decide whether Microsoft’s compliance proposals are acceptable.

Microsoft has already complied with other EC sanctions, paying a fine and introducing a modified form of Windows, but has lodged a separate appeal against them.

Additionally, the two parties have yet to agree on who will be appointed as trustee to oversee Microsoft’s compliance with all the sanctions.

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