Judge rejects Microsoft motion in Caldera suit

Microsoft took a knock in another court on Friday, when a judge denied its motion for summary judgement in a lawsuit brought by Caldera Systems.

Caldera Systems' charge that Microsoft engaged in anticompetitive behavior will be decided in a jury trial, a US federal judge ruled on Friday.

In a 68-page opinion, Judge Dee Benson of the US District Court in Salt Lake City, Utah, denied Microsoft's motion for summary judgement, which means the case will head to trial, set to begin Jan. 17, according to Lyle Ball, a spokesman for Caldera.

"Benson found that there was sufficient evidence supporting our claims to allow Caldera to proceed to jury trial," Ball said.

Caldera's lawsuit, filed in 1996 in Salt Lake City, alleges that Microsoft used monopoly power in the desktop operating market to crush the Caldera's DR-DOS operating system, which Microsoft viewed as a competitor to its own MS-DOS. Microsoft has argued that it is not a monopoly and denies any wrongdoing.

Caldera is seeking compensation for financial damage which resulted from Microsoft's alleged anticompetitive behavior and will attempt to establish the amount during the trial, Ball said. If Caldera prevails at trial, that amount will automatically be tripled under federal law, he said.

Microsoft officials were not immediately available for comment.

Microsoft Corp., in Redmond, Washington, can be reached at +1-425-882-8080 or at http://www.microsoft.com. Caldera, in Provo,Utah, can be reached at +1-801-377-7687, or at http://www.caldera.com.

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