Microsoft will have its appeal against the EC's anti-trust judgement heard on 24 April, the European Court of First Instance has decided.

Microsoft was fined €497 million in March 2004 for abusing its dominant market position. To comply with the ruling, the software giant shipped a version of its OS without Windows Media Player.

The company was also ordered to detail technical information to allow competitors to make compatible products. Microsoft is still fighting that part of the decision, notably the order to publish protocols that would allow non-Microsoft servers to operate with Windows OS clients and servers.

While Microsoft has maintained it has sent proper documentation, a computer expert with the Commission determined it was inadequate. On Tuesday, the European Commission granted Microsoft an extension until 15 February to provide satisfactory technical details.

In December, the Commission said it would fine Microsoft €2 million a day unless it met a deadline, originally set for Wednesday.