The Sun Microsystems versus Microsoft Java trial will be delayed until the autumn while both parties prepare their cases.
The software industry enemies have agreed to delay a 31 July hearing until 4 September but a date for the trial itself has not yet been fixed.
In a motion filed in May, Sun asked for an injunction to stop Microsoft from shipping a version of Java in Windows 98 that is not compatible with Sun?s own specification. Sun is asking that the court give Microsoft three options: either make its version of the Java Virtual Machine (JVM) compliant; ship Sun?s own JVM with it; or not ship a JVM at all.
But by the time the first hearing on this motion is held, Windows 98 will have been shipping for more than two months with the disputed JVM.
?This was a mutual decision,? said Microsoft representative Jim Cullinan. He said both parties needed more time.
Sun representative Lisa Poulson confirmed this, saying some of the Sun personnel that Microsoft wishes to depose for its case, and vice versa, are away for the summer.
Poulson said the delay did not materially affect Sun?s demand for an injunction. ?We weren?t trying to stop the release of [Windows 98],? she said. ?Our goal is to get the court to order Microsoft to make modifications to their code.?
Poulson said the delay was ?not substantial?, given that the trial itself might easily go on for years and that Windows 98 is likely to remain on the market into the next century.
She said Sun would not sit still in the meantime. ?We?re not depending solely on the courts,? said Poulson. She said Sun?s main drive is to convince developers and users that they should use Sun?s version of Java.
Sun maintained that the Java virtual machine that is shipping with Windows 98 is not compliant with Sun?s specifications and that this breaks the Java licensing deal between both companies.
Sun filed a suit against Microsoft in October 1997 for violating the Java license agreement. In March 1998, Sun won an injunction against Microsoft prohibiting the company from using the Java logo for certain products.
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