The Windows 8 browser ballot issue was apparently not in dispute, however. Although Microsoft had declined to comment when asked in May if it believed it must offer a ballot for Windows 8, the new operating system was never mentioned by the Commission in its July announcement or subsequent comments about a broader probe.
On Sept. 4 Microsoft quietly began pushing a ballot screen through its Windows Update service to Europeans running Windows 8 RTM, the final code released to many enterprises and some users in the weeks before. Windows 8 RTM, or "release to manufacturing," shipped without the browser ballot. Microsoft also updated a support document related to the browser ballot to include references to Windows 8, and to describe the changes that take place if a user selects a browser other than IE. The support document makes no mention of Windows RT.
Microsoft declined comment on the Reuters report, or to disclose what other steps the company may have pledged to take. The European Commission was not available Sunday.
Gregg Keizer covers Microsoft, security issues, Apple, Web browsers and general technology breaking news for Computerworld. Follow Gregg on Twitter at @gkeizer, or subscribe to Gregg's RSS feed . His email address is email@example.com.
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