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Microsoft Files Patent Infringement Lawsuit Against Salesforce.com

Both companies sell Customer Relationship Management (CRM) products, and the lawsuit appears to be aimed at Salesfroce.com's well-known and successful "Software-as-a-Service" (SAAS) software.

Microsoft fired a salvo at Software-as-a-Service provider Salesforce.com Tuesday, filing a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Seattle alleging Salesforce.com infringed on nine of its technology patents.

Both companies sell Customer Relationship Management (CRM) products, and the lawsuit appears to be aimed at Salesforce.com's well-known and successful Software-as-a-Service (SAAS) software that delivers CRM and other applications to businesses.

The patents cited in the lawsuit were for technical innovations such as "System and method for controlling access to data entities in a computer network," and "Automated web site creation using template driven generation of active server page applications."

However, when describing its history of innovation, Microsoft listed software programs that are also at the heart of Salesforce.com's products.

Microsoft said its "long history of technical innovation" included cloud computing, and listed Microsoft Dynamics CRM and Microsoft Dynamics ERP.

Microsoft said Salesforce.com was in the "business providing customer relationship management (CRM) software as a service over the Internet."

Microsoft asked for a jury trial and asked that it be awarded compensatory damages, triple damages, as well as preliminary and permanent injunctions prohibiting Salesforce.com from "further acts of infringement."

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