Judge orders Ballmer to testify in 'Vista capable' case

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has been ordered to testify in the 'Vista Capable' case.

A federal judge in Seattle has ordered Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer to testify in a class action lawsuit against Microsoft that alleges the company misled consumers in a marketing campaign for its Windows Vista operating system in which computers sold with an older Microsoft OS were labeled 'Vista Capable' when in fact they could only run a basic version of Vista.

Ballmer has unique personal knowledge of facts surrounding the case, therefore he must face questioning, Judge Marsha Pechman of the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington at Seattle ruled, according to court documents released late Friday.

Lawyers for the plaintiffs will have no more than three hours to take a deposition from Ballmer at the time and place of his convenience, the documents said. The deposition must take place within 30 days of the order.

The case against Microsoft was launched early last year. The plaintiffs allege that most computers labeled 'Vista Capable' in the marketing campaign, which began in early 2006, cannot run or run poorly Vista Premium, the version of Vista with the most popular features.

Microsoft had sought to exclude Ballmer from questioning, saying he was not involved in operational discussions around the 'Vista Capable' program, the court documents say. Microsoft had offered up then co-president Jim Allchin and then-senior vice president Will Poole instead of Ballmer, saying the two had superior knowledge of the program.

The plaintiffs won the argument to question Ballmer by pointing out conversations between Ballmer and Intel CEO Paul Otellini in which the two discussed possible changes in the Vista Capable requirements.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags vista capable lawsuit

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Dan Nystedt

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?