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Microsoft ordered to pay Eur 899 million

Microsoft, the biggest software manufacturer (opens in new tab) in the world, has been fine a record $1.4 billion because of its anti-competitive behaviour.

The fine comes a few days after Microsoft announced that it would open its environment to third parties including the open source community and that they would be able to examine thousands of pages of data that were closely guarded by Microsoft.

The move (opens in new tab) was seen by many as a half-baked (or a last-ditch) attempt to calm European regulators and it looks as if they were right.

The ruling came after Microsoft was found guilty of not abiding by a 2004 decision that compelled the manufacturer to release vital data to rival software firms rather than charging them hefty fees.

Microsoft has previously been fined Eur 280 million in 2006 and Eur 497 million in 2004 and the European commission (opens in new tab) vs Microsoft saga has now been lasting for nearly 15 years.

Microsoft had previously been accused of squeezing out rivals by linking and bundling its Internet Explorer browser to its Windows Operating System since Windows 95.

Another looming tug of war between the two organisations could happen if Microsoft is successful in its bid to acquire Internet powerhouse, Yahoo.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.