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Vista Capable Suit Loses Class Action Status

One of the long-running lawsuits against Microsoft today hit a major new development.

Microsoft was under fire for its Vista Capable marketing program. Machines sold with Windows XP but featured a “Windows Vista Capable” sticker were supposed to signify to the consumer that such machines would be able to run Windows Vista – and Windows Vista it does run, but not all machines with the sticker could run the newer OS with all the visual features.

Specifically, those who bought modest Windows XP machines were displeased that their machines were not able to run Vista with the new Aero Glass interface. And so, the class action lawsuit was born. But today, a judge removed the class action status from the lawsuit.

The removal of the class action status is a major blow to the lawsuit, as now the plaintiffs who would like to continue to pursue their complaint against Microsoft must do it on an individual basis.

Microsoft spokesman David Bowermaster said in a statement: "We're pleased that the court granted our motion to decertify the class, leaving only the claims of six individuals. We look forward to presenting our case to the jury, should the plaintiffs elect to pursue their individual claims."

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Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • jhansonxi
    The basis for the class status is difficult to prove but Microsoft was denied a summary judgment so it will still go to trial. What a sloppy product launch.
    Reply
  • fuser
    What, I can't store 20GB of music on my 8GB iPhone? Sue! Oh, but this is a Microsoft product, so it's ok to blame the manufacturer for not helping consumers overcome their lack of education.
    Reply
  • AndrewMD
    I am glad that the Class Action part was dropped.

    It's not Microsoft's fault that a kid in the store made you purchase a computer and didn't understand the whole Windows Vista meaning!

    Reply
  • roofus
    so a bunch of people who bought computers at Walmart on clearance couldn't run aero after the Vista upgrade?
    Reply
  • njalterio
    Agree with what everyone said. You would think people would intuitively understand that an OS launched six years from it's previous version would have different hardware requirements.
    Reply
  • tayb
    Say these two words aloud: Vista Basic. What is the first word you just said?

    I rest my case. Just because you don't have the graphical nuances doesn't mean it isn't the same core operating system.
    Reply
  • curnel_D
    We all seen this coming. It was a stupid lawsuit grasping at air anyways.
    Reply
  • enforcer22
    IMO the judge needs to throw this one out. The computers are vista compatable. As they run vista. Where did they say they were vista compatable and all options, apps, programs, games, and hardware will run on it? I mean hey no one would be stupid enough to say that right? Apperantly microsoft did i mean why else have this law suit right?

    Hi buy this $500 computer it runs vista. OK!

    man i cant activate the dx10 fetures with my dx8 card wtf!

    Suing microsoft cuz my computer isnt able to run vista!

    (shakes head)
    Reply
  • mdillenbeck
    The responses here tell me you all expect consumers to have the same level of expertise in computers that you have. Basically, caveat emptor - a shame this noble sense didn't carry through when you learned the game you just bought had only 3 or 5 activations before being rendered useless.

    Here's my imperfect "vista capable" analogy: its like calling a car roadway capable, then when consumers discover its max speed is 30mph and can't be driven on highways telling them "sorry, we only said it was capable of going on the roads, not that it was compatible with all roadways - if you upgrade your engine, you should be able to get that full driving experience".

    Sorry, I am saddened at the loss of the class action status. After all, what is one individual going to do in court that Microsofts vast legal resources won't squash? Even if the individual does win, what kind of loss is that to Microsoft for its willful obfuscation of what OS could run on Vista Capable branded systems?
    Reply
  • enforcer22
    MDillenbeckThe responses here tell me you all expect consumers to have the same level of expertise in computers that you have. Basically, caveat emptor - a shame this noble sense didn't carry through when you learned the game you just bought had only 3 or 5 activations before being rendered useless.Here's my imperfect "vista capable" analogy: its like calling a car roadway capable, then when consumers discover its max speed is 30mph and can't be driven on highways telling them "sorry, we only said it was capable of going on the roads, not that it was compatible with all roadways - if you upgrade your engine, you should be able to get that full driving experience".Sorry, I am saddened at the loss of the class action status. After all, what is one individual going to do in court that Microsofts vast legal resources won't squash? Even if the individual does win, what kind of loss is that to Microsoft for its willful obfuscation of what OS could run on Vista Capable branded systems?
    the fact remains that the computers are vista compatable and are running vista. bottom line. you expect to play games at max settings cuz you have the minimum requierments? Vista does have a minimum requierment notation it also says at least on my box to run advance fetures you need more hardware. Long before vista was released they were up front about that.

    the car analagy is insane i dont know how you can say thats close.
    Reply