Details are still forthcoming, but Microsoft and Novell announced this morning that, thanks to private mediation, they have settled Novell's NetWare-based antitrust lawsuit against Microsoft for $536 million. Under terms of the agreement, Novell will release all its US-based antitrust claims against Microsoft and withdraw from the European Union (EU) antitrust case against Microsoft. Microsoft, meanwhile, will pay Novell $536 million and release its counterclaims against the company.
Notably, although Microsoft and Novell were able to resolve their differences regarding NetWare, the companies haven't reached an agreement regarding their second antitrust struggle, which revolves around the WordPerfect word-processing application, which Novell owned in the mid-1990s. Novell's WordPerfect lawsuit will continue, and both companies have reserved the right to pursue other past or future legal claims against each other.
"Over the past 2 years, we have made a sustained effort to build more constructive relationships with our industry partners and competitors," Microsoft Senior Vice President, General Counsel, and Corporate Secretary Brad Smith said. "Today's NetWare settlement is a product of that effort and reflects an open dialogue the companies established to address and ultimately resolve this matter. We could not resolve claims related to WordPerfect in any manner we thought appropriate, and we are prepared to turn to the courts to resolve it."