Microsoft Workgroup Server Protocol Program

Microsoft has designed the Workgroup Server Protocol Program (WSPP) to meet the obligation to make protocol technology available to relevant undertakings and allow the use of its technology in the manner required by the European Commission’s Decision issued on 24 March 2004 (Decision). In this regard, Microsoft has established a patent licensing program in consultation with the Commission. In addition, Microsoft is committed to working constructively and in a spirit of good faith to craft appropriate royalties and licenses that may depart from programmatic offerings in order to address the needs of particular undertakings.

Learn more about WSPP

Microsoft Windows versions without Windows Media Player Technologies

Microsoft will also comply with the European Commission direction to release versions of Microsoft Windows in Europe that do not include Windows Media Player.

Microsoft implementation of European Commission decision FAQ

Find answers to frequently asked questions about Microsoft’s implementation of the European Commission decision relation to Windows Media Player.


In compliance with the European Commission decision, Microsoft produces for distribution in Europe a version of Microsoft Windows called Windows “N.” This version will not include Windows Media Player. Consistent with our agreement with the Commission, Windows N is made available to computer manufacturers with whom Microsoft has direct relationships, system builders (small computer manufacturers, and volume licensing customers such as corporations). Note that computer manufacturers may pre-install third party media players on computers running Windows N. European consumers may also separately install media players, either from Microsoft or a third party. The regular versions of Windows will continue to include Windows Media Player and remain available to European consumers.

Windows N is available through our standard distribution channels, including computer manufacturers.

Windows N is available through our standard distribution channels, including computer manufacturers.

Microsoft's LinkedIn commitments in the European Union

In connection with its December 2016 acquisition of LinkedIn, Microsoft entered into a set of commitments with the European Commission. The commitments are planned to remain in effect through December 6, 2021 and are being overseen by an independent monitoring trustee. Pursuant to the commitments, Microsoft agreed to take certain steps to ensure that European users of Windows and Office1 will continue to have choice in their use of professional social networking services with those products.

Read more about the specific steps Microsoft agreed to take in the Microsoft / Linkedin Commitments to the European Commission PDF.

1For purposes of the commitments, “Office” means Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook 2013 (and later) desktop clients for Windows PCs.