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Brief: Microsoft Will Meet Korean Windows XP Deadline

The company will roll out two versions each of Windows XP Home and Windows XP Professional next week in order to comply with that country's antitrust ruling.
Microsoft will release four new editions of Windows XP next week in South Korea to meet demands of the country's antitrust watchdog, wire service reports said Wednesday.

According to stories by both Reuters and the Associated Press, Microsoft will roll out two versions each of Windows XP Home and Windows XP Professional next week. One will be sans Windows Media Player and the Windows Messenger instant messaging client, while the other will feature a Web page that leads customers to downloads of rival media players and IM programs.

Earlier this year, the Korea Fair Trade Commission (KFTC) fined the Redmond, Wash. developer $34 million and ordered it to produce the new versions. In May, the KFTC rejected Microsoft's appeal and told it to have the new editions ready this month. The company, however, has appealed the ruling to the country's High Court, which has not yet heard the case.

At one point last year, the antitrust brouhaha caused Microsoft to say it would withdraw from the Korean market rather than comply, but the American vendor quickly retracted the ultimatum.