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U.S. Faults Microsoft Compliance

The firm is behind in providing technical data required in an antitrust deal, prosecutors say.

January 24, 2006|From Bloomberg News

Microsoft Corp. is failing to move quickly enough to comply with its antitrust settlement with the government, the Bush administration said Monday in its strongest show of impatience with the company since they reached their agreement in 2001.

Justice Department lawyers said in a court filing that Microsoft was falling behind on providing technical information mandated by the settlement.

U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly in Washington, who is overseeing the settlement, in October questioned the pace of Microsoft's efforts to develop tools to help competitors create software that runs smoothly on the Windows operating system. A month later, she said the company was making progress and seemed to be "back on track."

In its latest court papers, the Justice Department said the company had fallen "significantly behind" in answering technical questions about its software. The administration hadn't previously complained that Microsoft was moving too slowly to fulfill its obligations under the settlement.

The company "needs to dramatically increase the resources devoted to responding" to the government's concerns, the court papers said.

Microsoft spokesman Jack Evans said that the Redmond, Wash.-based company was "working hard to resolve the concerns raised" by the government and that it was committed to expending "whatever resources are necessary to address these issues."

The settlement was reached after a federal judge and appeals court ruled that the company illegally protected its monopoly on the Windows operating system, which runs about 95% of the world's personal computers.

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