Microsoft Assures Windows Customers of No Impact from Sun Lawsuit Ruling

Redmond, Wash., Nov. 20, 1998 — Microsoft today issued communications to its partners and customers worldwide about the ruling in the Sun lawsuit. Microsoft assured customers that the ruling will have no impact on Microsoft’s ability to deliver Windows 98 and other products to its customers. Microsoft will comply with the Court order.

“Our top priority is to make certain that our customers understand that they will see little or no impact from the ruling.” said Jeff Raikes, senior vice president for sales and support. “We want our customers to know that the ruling has no impact on the Microsoft products they are using now, and will not cause any delay in our ability to deliver Windows 98 and other products to the marketplace.”

Microsoft has sent letters to customer segments that may have differing concerns about the effect of the federal court ruling, including OEMs, resellers, enterprise customers, distributors, developers and end users. The Java virtual machine for Windows will continue to outperform other Java implementations. The court did not order Microsoft to remove any technology from its products. It simply ordered Microsoft to add support for Sun Microsystem’s Java Native Interface (JNI) technology, part of the inner workings of Java that most users never see. The court also required Microsoft to make changes to its Java programming tools, but did not require Microsoft to remove any of the technology that has made those tools very popular with Java programmers.

In its letters and on its Website at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/ , Microsoft is advising its customers:

  • Current Windows users will not be impacted by this Court ruling. Microsoft customers will continue to be able to enjoy all the benefits, features and functionality of Windows. Windows 98 and other Microsoft products will continue to be supplied to consumers without interruption.

  • OEMs are being informed that products currently in the channel or being shipped on personal computers will not be affected. Microsoft will be providing OEMs with updated versions of Windows 98 and other products in accordance with its compliance plan so that there will be no interruption in the delivery of new computers to customers.

  • Retail stores and resellers may continue to sell the current stock of Microsoft products in the channel. Modified versions of Windows 98 and other Microsoft products will be made available to the retail channel as soon as possible in compliance with the Court order.

  • Developers remain free to utilize the Microsoft Java development tools they have, like VJ++6.0, and may use all the Java enhancements included in those products. Microsoft will modify VJ++6.0 so that developers must affirmatively choose to turn on the Microsoft enhancements, at which time a message will be displayed in accordance with the court’s order advising developers that by using those enhancements they are choosing to write an application that may only run on Windows.

  • As part of its plan to comply with the court’s ruling, Microsoft will also post to its web site patches and a Service Pack release to enable existing customers to modify the products they now own if they should choose to do so.

“Microsoft will comply with the Court’s order and we are working hard to prevent any impact to developers and all our customers,”
said Raikes.
“We are committed to supporting Java for our Windows customers while assessing our business and legal options moving forward.”

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
“MSFT”
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

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Microsoft and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

Other product and company names herein may be trademarks of their respective owners.

For more information, press only:

Joscelyn Zell, Waggener Edstrom, (503) 443-7000, jzell@wagged.com

Jim Cullinan, Microsoft CorpPR, (202) 956-7056

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/ on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

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