Sun files opposition to Microsoft's appeal in Java case

Sun Microsystems Inc. made a filing to a federal appeals court on Tuesday laying out its objections to Microsoft Corp.'s request for more time to include Java technology in Windows operating systems.

Sun presented the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia, with a 25-page document citing reasons that Microsoft should ship Java technology with Windows as soon as possible. Earlier this month, a lower court gave Microsoft 120 days from Feb. 4 to begin including Java with Windows. Microsoft subsequently appealed that decision, asking for more time, which led to the Tuesday response from Sun.

In the appeal, Microsoft had claimed that Sun did not face any "imminent irreparable harm" if Microsoft did not include Java in Windows. Sun argued that the inclusion of Java with Windows is a time-sensitive issue and that further delays could be harmful to the company and its technology.

"(T)he district court explicitly found that Sun is threatened with irreparable harm and that its requested relief is urgently needed now," Sun said in the filing.

The ongoing legal row between Sun and Microsoft over Java heated up last December when U.S. District Judge Frederick Motz ordered Microsoft to ship Java with Windows.

Sun argued that Microsoft has not shown solid reasons why it would take longer than 120 days to ship the JRE (Java Runtime Environment) with Windows. Microsoft claimed it would take an enormous amount of engineering resources to include Java and that the technology would adversely affect the quality of Microsoft software.

Sun's Java technology was invented in the mid-90s with the hopes that Java programs could run on a variety of operating systems with little alteration to the underlying code. Microsoft has since come up with its own technology, called .Net, that competes with Java.

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