Microsoft has labelled as "extreme" the proposed remedies by the nine states that refuse to accept the antitrust case settlement.
The opposing states believe that the settlement, which has yet to be ratified by a judge, was too lenient and are determined to press for harsher penalties against the software giant.
"We're dealing with a repeat offender here; a lawbreaker many times over, and that has been established. That is a fact; that's no longer a question. That's where you start from, and you work from there," said Massachusetts Attorney General Tom Reilly.
The key remedies outlined by the states are that Microsoft should offer a stripped-down version of Windows at a lower price that would not include applications like media players, messaging facilities or a web browser.
Microsoft would also have to disclose source code so that software makers could better develop products to work with Windows.
It would have to incorporate Java technology into Windows, which it has stopped doing, and auction off code so that Office could be developed for Linux. A 'special master' would be appointed to monitor Microsoft's compliance.
"The proposed remedies submitted today by the nine holdout states are extreme and not commensurate with what is left of the case," said a Microsoft spokesman.
At present US District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly is reviewing the previously announced settlement to decide whether it does enough to punish Microsoft, which lost antitrust battles in the District Court and Court of Appeals.
Simultaneously, the judge is preparing for a new trial between the nine hold-out states and Microsoft. Kollar-Kotelly will no doubt try and get the two sides to settle, but the rhetoric after Friday's announcement shows that both are far from agreeing on anything.
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