Wednesday, November 4, 1998 Published at 00:14 GMT
Gates: I don't remember talking about 'undermining' Sun
Bill Gates has appeared in court - on screen
Microsoft boss Bill Gates told US Government lawyers that he could not remember having internal discussions about a need to "undermine" Sun Microsystems because of what it was doing in Java.
He replied: "I don't remember sending it.
When pressed, he said: "It appears to be an e-mail I sent."
The Java programming language works without Microsoft's Windows system.
The government contends Microsoft made an illegal offer to Netscape to divide the Internet browser market, so that Microsoft had the Windows market and Netscape had the rest.
When asked if he was aware if Microsoft representatives had met with competitors in an attempt to allocate markets he said: "That is very much against the way we operate."
However, he did recall turning down an internal suggestion that Microsoft invest in Netscape.
More than half an hour of footage was broadcast showing Mr Gates jousting with government lawyers in pre-trial interviews. It was then released to the public.
The federal government and 20 states are accusing Microsoft of using its monopoly in personal computer operating systems to try to squeeze out its competitors.
Lawyers representing Mr Gates had originally objected to the tapes being played.
They argued that if so many hours were to be used, the US Government should count Mr Gates as a witness and give up one of its other 12 witnesses.
District Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson said Mr Gates was so important that "a witness of equivalent significance in this case doesn't immediately come to mind."
He invited Microsoft to offer another witness, if it could justify adding one.
Microsoft lawyer John Warden said he had no objection.
Government lawyer David Boies said the government would try to cut down the amount of videotaped testimony to six or seven hours.