At a conference call following the decision of Microsoft to submit to the US government, a senior executive admitted that the software integrity of Windows 95 depended on Internet Explorer.
Said Bob Herboldt at the conference call: "The DoJ (the Department if Justice) no longer wants Microsoft to remove IE from Windows 95. It would break Windows 95 which is no one's interest."
The utility Microsoft will give away allows end users and other partners to hide the icon, rather than to remove elements of the operating system, he said.
"Today, Microsoft will offer an option to computer manufacturers."
He said: "We want to get back to more fundamental matters. We honestly believed we were complying. If the court had ordered us to hide the icon, we would have complied immediately."
He said Microsoft had never offered consumers a lack of choice. He said: "Consumers have always had the option to install Netscape Navigator if they wanted to."
He said: "We believe software developers should have the right to decide and consumers should decide what they want, not the government."
He said that Microsoft still would work on Windows 98 and it was still unclear what the effect would be on how the OS looked.
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