Citrix's software allows applications running on servers to be accessed by users on workstations. Businesses save software licensing costs on workstations by keeping the expensive applications on servers, to be accessed when needed.
As Microsoft periodically modifies and updates its server software, Citrix's developers must also adjust its MetaFrame product to remain interoperable. Microsoft exacted a price for access to its source code under a work-for-hire provision in a previous agreement.
"Unlike the May 1997 agreement, there are no work-for-hire provisions and therefore no financial remuneration," said Bob Kruger, Citrix's senior vice-president, product development and chief technology officer.
"This agreement is strictly for access to the source code and interfaces to enable Citrix to provide more timely enterprise-class enhancements."
Citrix does not need Microsoft's source code to keep up, but the company will adjust better to changes with continued access, claimed Kruger.
The deal gives Citrix access to Windows NT, Windows 2000 and .net server code.