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Microsoft In Two New EU Probes

Microsoft is under the European Commission's microscope yet again in two new probes: the first for allegedly preventative technology inside Internet Explorer, its Web browser, and the second for failing to share interoperability information for products like Microsoft Office.

The fresh probes follow the software giant's landmark decision three months ago not to appeal a European court ruling upholding a 2004 decision against the company. That decision forced Microsoft to pay hundreds of millions in fines and to share information related to its server software, so rivals so could create compatible software.

One of the anticompetitive probes stems from a complaint by ECIS, a group composed of rivals like Oracle and IBM, which claims that Microsoft "illegally refused to disclose interoperability information across a broad range of products," including Office, which has a new file format the commission said might not be "sufficiently interoperable with competitors' products." The other probe involving Internet Explorer came from Norwegian browser maker Opera Software SA, which claimed that IE reduces "compatibility with open Internet standards." Microsoft said it would fully comply with the EU investigation.

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