A judge has denied Microsoft Corp.’s request for a preliminary injunction against start-up Inc., thus allowing the start-up to continue selling its operating system under the name Lindows.

Lindows is a version of Linux that its maker claims can run Windows programs. The ruling could also be the first step leading to Microsoft’s loss of trademark protection for its Windows operating system’s name, though U.S. Federal District Court for the Western District of Washington Judge John C. Coughenour said in his ruling that this decision was only preliminary and “not a conclusive finding that the trademark is invalid.” The suit will now continue with depositions and evidence discovery. Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft had argued that the close similarity in the Lindows and Windows names would confuse customers and dilute its trademark for Windows products.

Sun to begin charging for StarOffice suite in May

After giving away free downloads of its StarOffice office productivity suite for more than two years, Sun Microsystems Inc. has announced that it will begin charging for the software beginning in May, although it plans to include support and services to users.

Sun said that its next version of the suite, StarOffice 6.0, will be released in May under a tiered, per-user pricing structure. The prices are not yet being released, according to the company. Mike Rogers, a vice-president of office and desktop productivity applications at the company, said the move is being made because StarOffice user companies have said they would be willing to pay for the software if it came with support. While Sun will discontinue its free downloads of StarOffice when it begins selling the suite in May, it will continue to enable no-charge downloads of the open-source version of the application, which is available through the project.

OpenOSX ships XFree 1.1 CD, a business dedicated to serve the budding Mac OS X community, is now shipping their XFree 1.1 CD, which the company says delivers “true compatibility” with the X-Window library to the Mac OS 10.1.x desktop.

Without typing any Unix commands, the OpenOSX CD will install XFree 4.2.0 and Darwin 1.1 configured with the OroborOSX window manager. XFree is a native implementation of the X-Window library that is the Unix standard for graphical user interfaces. OroborOSX and XDarwin interleave the X-Window environment into Mac OS X’s Aqua environment. Installation technical support for one seat and de-installation software is included with the CD.