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Caldera still pursuing MS case

Sun Microsystems Inc., the U.S. Department of Justice and various state attorneys general may be commanding the spotlight with their high-profile legal actions against Microsoft Corp.

Sun Microsystems Inc., the U.S. Department of Justice and various state attorneys general may be commanding the spotlight with their high-profile legal actions against Microsoft Corp., but, hidden among the mountains of Utah, Caldera Inc. continues to take Microsoft to task over MS-DOS.

On Tuesday, the software company was allowed to expand its antitrust case against Microsoft. A Federal magistrate granted Caldera the right to introduce evidence that Caldera claims will show Microsoft illegally "tied" MS-DOS to Windows 95. Previously, Caldera's case was focused only on Microsoft's alleged tying of MS-DOS to Windows 3.1. The new evidence is based on the discovery that Windows 95 can operate on top of DR-DOS, contrary to claims allegedly made by Microsoft at the time.

The case is due to go to trial in November, with the two sides slated to meet in court tomorrow to argue Microsoft's request to delay the start of the trial. Caldera first sued Microsoft for anti-competitive behavior in July 1996. The case was a follow-on to the previous battle between the DOJ and Microsoft that led to a 1995 consent decree.

At the time, Caldera sued Microsoft, of Redmond, Wash., for allegedly using monopolistic practices to unfairly dominate the DOS marketplace. In asking for treble damages, Caldera sought an injunction to what it claimed was "illegal conduct by Microsoft calculated and intended to prevent and destroy competition in the computer software industry."

Caldera, of Orem, Utah, sued Microsoft the day that it acquired the DR-DOS operating system from Novell Inc. DR-DOS competed against Microsoft's MS-DOS in the 1980s.

Additional information courtesy of ZDNet UK.

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