Microsoft suffered a legal setback yesterday in its 'windows' trademark battle with Lindows.com, after judges ruled that a jury trial would be delayed so that previously unseen evidence could be evaluated.
The US District Court in Seattle ordered Microsoft to produce more than 300 boxes of evidence in the dispute, delaying the scheduled trial date from 7 April until 1 December.
The fresh evidence will include documentation from the 1992 Apple versus Microsoft case.
Lindows.com has argued that these documents reveal that elements such as windows, icons and menus were not the property of any one company because they were widely used in the computer business.
Microsoft disputes this argument, insisting that it should be allowed to maintain exclusive use of the word 'windows'.
The software giant was denied a request for a preliminary injunction against Lindows.com last March.
The court order at the time stated: "In its defence of a copyright suit brought by Apple Computer, Microsoft successfully argued that several companies had introduced user interfaces featuring overlapping windows prior to Microsoft's announcement of its Windows product."
Michael Robertson, chief executive at Lindows.com, said in a statement: "We're hopeful that the documents will add to the mountain of evidence which demonstrates that the term 'windows' is generic and not the exclusive property of any one company."
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