Microsoft CEO Ballmer forced to testify about Vista, for three hours

Logo MicrosoftMicrosoft CEO Steve Ballmer is now under court order to testify in a case charging Microsoft with deceptive marketing, despite his protests that he knew nothing about the "Vista Capable" mess.

Ballmer has been compelled by a court to testify in a class action suit accusing Microsoft of providing misleading information about the ability of some Intel-based PCs to run Vista. But Friday's ruling in the case by US District Judge Marsha Pechman places a time limit of three hours on Ballmer's deposition.

Plaintiffs in the suit charge that, to increase the number of Windows XP machines designated as "Vista Capable," Microsoft in 2006 dropped the requirement for PCs labeled "Vista Capable" to support the Windows Device Driver Model (WDDM).

Although ultimately given the "Windows Capable" designation, PCs with Intel 915 and 915GM chips "will not support WDDM and will not offer any graphics stability or performance improvement over Windows XP, nor will they support any of the visual quality/productivity/style improvements over Windows XP," acknowledged Rajesh Srinivasan, a Microsoft exec, in a message that was part of a chain of e-mails recently unsealed by the court.

"I had nothing to do with this," Ballmer contended, in another e-mail in the chain. "I am not even in the detail of the issues."

On October 3, Microsoft filed a request seeking to get Ballmer excused from testifying in the case through a protective order.

"Mr. Ballmer has no unique personal knowledge of any facts at issue. He was not involved in the decisions with respect to the Windows Vista Capable program that Plaintiffs challenge. Instead, he learned of those decisions only after the fact from subordinate employees," according to Microsoft's filing.

In her court decision last Friday, though, the judge denied Microsoft's attempt at a protective order. "Plaintiffs opposed the protective order claiming Mr. Ballmer had direct, pertinent involvement in the Windows Vista Capable program," according to the ruling.

"In particular, Plaintiffs point to a phone call between Intel's CEO, Paul Otellini, and Mr. Ballmer where the executives supposedly discussed a change in the Vista Capable requirements," Judge Pechman wrote.

"Plaintiffs have demonstrated Mr. Ballmer has unique personal knowledge" discoverable within the deposition process, according to the court ruling on Friday. "The Court appreciates that there are severe demands on Mr. Ballmer's time; however, a busy schedule cannot 'shield' an executive from [legal] discovery."

Beyond ruling that Ballmer's deposition will last no more than three hours, the court also stipulated that the deposition can take place any time over the next 30 days "at a time and place of Mr. Ballmer's convenience."

Source: BetaNews

Tags: Intel, Microsoft

Add comment

Your name:
Sign in with:
Your comment:

Enter code:

E-mail (not required)
E-mail will not be disclosed to the third party

Last news

The NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1180 will be Turing-based with a 12nm FinFET die shrink
This only works on posts made by profiles that are public
The device will be standalone and based on a Qualcomm chipset
Apple plans on offering a cheaper smart speaker that will be priced at $199
Chrome will adopt a new approach to indicating site security
Data shows they are leading smartphone sale worldwide
Is this an error or it is really happening?
The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) Review
The evolution of the successful smartphone, now with a waterproof body and USB Type-C
February 7, 2017 /
Samsung Galaxy TabPro S - a tablet with the Windows-keyboard
The first Windows-tablet with the 12-inch display Super AMOLED
June 7, 2016 /
Keyboards for iOS
Ten iOS keyboards review
July 18, 2015 /
Samsung E1200 Mobile Phone Review
A cheap phone with a good screen
March 8, 2015 / 4
Creative Sound Blaster Z sound card review
Good sound for those who are not satisfied with the onboard solution
September 25, 2014 / 2
Samsung Galaxy Gear: Smartwatch at High Price
The first smartwatch from Samsung - almost a smartphone with a small body
December 19, 2013 /

News Archive



Do you use microSD card with your phone?
or leave your own version in comments (10)