Microsoft Accused of Pulling Nigerian Scam

French Linux vendor Mandriva's chief executive Francois Bancilhon has lashed out against Microsoft for alleged dirty sales tactics over a Nigerian deal. The company recently competed against the software giant for a deal to provide the software for Intel's Classmate PCs in Nigeria, a computer is a low cost notebook computer for developing nations and supports both Linux and Windows operating systems. The Linux vendor reeled in the contract and started shipping its software for the first 17,000 Classmate PCs. But it soon found out that Microsoft's sales team had continued to keep pushing for a deal.

"Today, we hear from the customer a totally different story: 'We shall pay for the Mandriva Software as agreed, but we shall replace it by Windows afterward,'" Bancilhon complained in an open letter that was posted on a company blog on Wednesday. The tone of the posting became agitated and Bancilhon suggested that Microsoft used unscrupulous business tactics, apparently claiming that Microsoft bribed officials.

Naturally Microsoft denied any wrongdoings and aruged instead that Nigera had changed its mind because Windows better matched its needs. "Microsoft strongly believes that individuals, governments and other organizations should be free to use the software and other technologies that best meet their needs. We believe Microsoft offers the best overall option of value, integration, interoperability and support, without complexity or added dependency on services," the company said in an emailed statement.

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