A Hard Line on Software

ADRIAN WYLD/AP-CP


COMPETITION: Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer flew to Brussels to make a deal

If Mario Monti's resolve to punish Microsoft wavered last week, he showed no sign of it. For more than four arduous years, Europe's antitrust czar and his staff have toiled to build a watertight case against the computer software giant, filing three formal complaints alleging that the company abused its monopolistic position and harmed competitors and consumers. But last Tuesday, just a day after E.U. member states approved tough sanctions against the Redmond powerhouse, Microsoft's chief executive Steve Ballmer flew to Brussels with an eleventh-hour settlement offer that directly addressed many of the European complaints.

Some of Monti's...

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