Microsoft's video nasty week in front the US District Court improved slightly on Thursday after the court was shown brand new video evidence to replace previous "discredited" tapes.
But despite Microsoft's attempt to recreate a demonstration showing that Windows suffers "performance degradation" when Internet Explorer is removed, the court was left unconvinced.
Microsoft however breathed a sigh of relief after a week of embarrassing slip ups surrounding the video evidence. Much of the embarrassment has fallen on Microsoft senior vice president James Allchin, who took the witness stand this week.
"We were glad to have the opportunity to set the record straight," said Microsoft spokesman Mark Murray after Thursday's session.
Microsoft is using videotaped evidence to demonstrate that its Internet Explorer browser is an integral part of Windows and that it did not simply bundle it with Windows to steal market share from rival browser maker Netscape Communications.
On Tuesday Allchin showed a video to demonstrate performance degradation using software developed by US government witness Edward Felten that blocks Internet Explorer. However, the court quickly spotted that Felten's software didn't appear to be running on the demonstration machine.
Then on Wednesday, it transpired that the PC in Microsoft's video demonstration was not one but several computers. Microsoft had initially implied that the video showed one seamless demonstration filmed on one PC.
Finally, on Thursday, Allchin showed a new unedited tape filmed on one machine. However the results of the demonstration "didn't turn out as expected," Allchin told the court.
Allchin successfully demonstrated Money 99 and Microsoft Plus Deluxe CD suffering after Felten's software was installed. He also showed examples of problems accessing a Windows update Web site.
But senior US government prosecutor David Boies said the demonstration still didn't demonstrate degradation to the Windows operating system.
Allchin was scolded by the judge after telling the court that the new video may not accurately represent the tests he'd previously conducted. "It certainly casts doubt on the reliability - on the entire reliability - of the video demonstration," Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson told Allchin.
Earlier in the day, Jackson told Boies, who had grilled Allchin this week, that he had done "a very professional job of discrediting those tapes."
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