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Microsoft Pri0

Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Matt Day.

Category: Vista Capable
March 31, 2009 at 3:07 PM

Vista Capable trial postponed

U.S. District Court Judge Marsha Pechman decided today to postpone trial of the Vista Capable lawsuit, which was due to begin April 13. After hearing oral arguments last week on certification of two new classes, Pechman determined that a continuance — as requested by the plaintiffs’ attorneys — was appropriate. After Pechman decertified the original…

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March 25, 2009 at 3:07 PM

Renewed Vista Capable class-action effort gets hearing

After the ongoing Vista Capable lawsuit against Microsoft was decertified as a class-action last month, the plaintiffs sought to certify two new, narrower, classes to allow the case to go forward. That effort, and a request to delay the start of the trial, will get a hearing this afternoon in front of U.S. District Court Judge Marsha Pechman.

[See update after the jump, added at 6:33 p.m.]

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February 18, 2009 at 2:48 PM

Split decision on major Vista Capable ruling; decertification of class action could bring case to a close

U.S. District Court Judge Marsha Pechman issued a key ruling in the ongoing Vista Capable class action lawsuit that could bring the case to a close. She denied Microsoft’s motion for summary judgment, but decertified the case as a class-action, according to Microsoft spokesman David Bowermaster. I’m reading the ruling now and will update this post ASAP.

Updated 3:30 p.m.: Pechman’s 17-page opinion (PDF) lays out her reason for decertifying the class, which, as I understand it (and I’m not a lawyer) will make proceeding with the case untenable for the plaintiffs as individuals because legal costs are much greater than the amount any individual plaintiff may hope to recover from Microsoft. (I’m trying to contact attorneys for the plaintiffs and I’ll update this with their comments when I do. Update, 5 p.m.: Jeffrey Thomas, a plaintiffs attorney, said of the ruling, “We’re reviewing it and reviewing the options.”)

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January 21, 2009 at 3:01 PM

Plaintiffs’ expert estimates cost to upgrade ‘Vista Capable’ PCs at $3 billion to $8.5 billion

Keith Leffler, a University of Washington economics professor and expert witness for the plaintiffs suing Microsoft in the Vista Capable class action suit, was given the task of quantifying the impact of the Vista Capable program on PC prices and on Microsoft. In an exhibit unsealed today, Leffler summarizes his opinions and also estimates the cost of upgrading the 19.4 million PCs sold as “Vista Capable” between April 2006 and January 2007 to meet minimum requirements for running premium versions of the operating system. Leffler put the cost of adding more RAM and graphics cards to these machines in the range of $3.084 billion to $8.522 billion.

That figure could be important if the U.S. District Court Judge Marsha Pechman agrees with the plaintiffs and allows them to use an alternative means of calculating damages to people who purchased Vista Capable PCs — if, of course, plaintiffs successfully argue that they were, in fact, deceived by the program.

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January 4, 2009 at 7:38 PM

Expert witness estimates Microsoft Vista Capable revenue at $1.5 billion

Among the flurry of recent filings in the ongoing Vista Capable class action lawsuit is an abbreviated report of an expert witness who says Microsoft may have earned $1.505 billion on Windows XP licenses it sold on computers that were marked “Windows Vista Capable” but not “Premium Ready.” It’s possibly the first time a value for the controversial program has been given publicly.

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November 26, 2008 at 10:45 AM

Plaintiffs refine argument in ‘Vista Capable’ suit, arguing dropped graphics requirement created ‘third tier’ of Vista

In a document unsealed today, plaintiffs challenging Microsoft’s marketing practices refined their argument that “Vista Capable”-labeled PCs sold in 2006 and early 2007 allowed an upgrade to an edition of the operating system that “cannot fairly be called Vista”.

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November 20, 2008 at 4:24 PM

Microsoft seeks to bring Vista Capable class action suit to a swift end

Microsoft this afternoon filed two motions seeking to boot the Windows Vista Capable class action lawsuit from court and decertify the class.

While the internal Microsoft e-mails revealed in the case have garnered headlines — showing internal conflict over Vista marketing and hardware requirements, and the tricky balance Microsoft tried to strike among its PC industry partners — the company’s lawyers argue today that the plaintiffs’ have failed to offer evidence that Microsoft violated the Consumer Protection Acts of Washington or other states.

Update, Friday morning: See this story from today’s paper for more details.

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