Microsoft has formed a group of customers to help it identify where it can improve the interoperability of its products with those of other suppliers.
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The company has been accused in the past of not doing enough to maximise interoperability, and is currently involved in a long-running anti-trust spat with the European Commission over the interoperability of its workgroup server protocols.
Microsoft’s Interoperability Customer Executive Council is expected to meet twice a year at the company’s US headquarters in Redmond.
Bob Muglia, Microsoft senior vice-president of the server and tools business, is to host the meetings, which will focus on issues such as connectivity, application integration and data exchange.
The council's founding members include both government organisations and companies. These include Societe Generale, LexisNexis, Kohl's Department Stores, Denmark's Ministry of Finance and Spain's Generalitat de Catalunya and Centro Nacional de Inteligencia (CNI), along with the states of Wisconsin and Delaware.