Microsoft rebuttal witness Gordon Eubanks had a tough time testifying on the software giant's behalf at the US government's anti-trust trial.
The former chief executive of Symantec told the court that Windows' dominance in the PC market encouraged growth in the software industry. He argued that what he described as Microsoft's natural monopoly benefited customers and developers because it created a standard which aided software development.
However, Eubanks admitted that Symantec had avoided producing products that competed directly with Microsoft and said the company depended heavily on sales to the software giant.
Chief US government attorney David Boies then questioned Eubanks' impartiality by drawing attention to a number of incidents where he claimed the former Symantec head was a close ally of Microsoft and had used symantec's relationship with the software giant to its advantage in competition with other vendors.
He pointed out that Eubanks had been personally asked by Microsoft chairman Bill Gates to testify in favour of Microsoft.
Meanwhile, Microsoft will call Richard Schmalensee, dean of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's school of management, to the stand this week as its third rebuttal witness.
Schmalensee, who has already testified that Microsoft does not operate a monopoly, is expected to comment on internal memos written by executives in the AOL/Netscape merger, which Microsoft will claim is proof that competition is alive and well in the operating system and the internet browser market.
The trial will then head for a break until August at the earliest, with a decision from Judge Jackson not expected before September.
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