- Microsoft has opened key components of Windows by making 289 APIs (application programming interfaces) available for free at the Microsoft Developer Network website, as the company takes steps to comply with the proposed antitrust settlement with the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and nine states.
Microsoft announced on August 5 that an estimated 272 APIs used by Microsoft middleware products Internet Explorer (IE), Media Player, Outlook Express, Microsoft Messenger and Microsoft Java Virtual Machine would be released. Initially this week, Microsoft used that same figure, but after checking with company engineers the actual number of APIs made available is 289, Microsoft spokesman Jim Desler says.
Release of the APIs is something Microsoft agreed to do under the proposed settlement with the DOJ and the nine states, which was reached in November and revised in February. The proposed settlement awaits a ruling by US District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, who is expected to announce at any time whether she accepts the settlement terms or wants to impose harsher remedies.
"We were required to make these API disclosures by the time Service Pack 1 (for Windows XP) ships," Desler says. "That will ship later this summer, so we are disclosing these APIs ahead of schedule."
Microsoft also is confident that the disclosure of the 289 APIs puts the company in "complete compliance" with the settlement agreement because it requires disclosure of internal interfaces that are used in Windows by the five middleware products, Desler says.