Compuware sues IBM for anti-trust violations

13 March 2002 Software vendor Compuware is to sue systems giant IBM, alleging unauthorised use of its source code and breaches of anti-trust law.

Compuware president Joe Nathan says that IBM illegally used Compuware source code in its File Manager and Fault Analyzer tools; forced buyers of its mainframe software tools to purchase other IBM products; steered its services customers to its own products without fair competition; and denied rival vendors the necessary technical information on IBM software and hardware.

“Over the last 18 months that this issue has developed, we have been talking with various IBM executives at many levels and just gotten nowhere,” Nathan told InfoWorld. He alleges that as IBM introduced various products, it stopped providing independent vendors with pre-release software and other technical data.

The biggest piece of evidence that IBM stole source code comes from the company’s software manuals and the bugs in the software, says Nathan. “When we looked at the IBM product, we were astonished to find that the products not only looked very similar, but the IBM product had the same bugs Compuware’s product had in past releases.”

IBM’s File Manager manual contains numerous passages that are verbatim copies of Compuware’s own manuals, Nathan adds, including documentation of features not found in IBM’s product.

Compuware has not decided how much damages to apply for, but Nathan says he wants IBM to let “global services to run free and open competition”. IBM declined to comment on the case.

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Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...

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