Microsoft has released a 12.3Mbyte patch for Office 2007, tocomply with a UScourt order banning the use of custom tagging after 10 January 2010.
The move follows a patentdispute with Canadian software maker i4i.
On 11 August 2009 the US District Court for the Eastern District of Texasruled that Microsoft must no longer sell, offer to sell or import into the US any Wordproducts that have the capability to open a .xml file.
Microsoft appealedagainst the ban in September 2009.
But on 22 December 2009, the United States Federal Circuit Court of Appealsin Washington DC ruled in favour of i4i and found thatMicrosoft had willfully infringed i4i's patent.
The court banned Microsoft from distributing versions ofOffice Word 2007 that can read the custom XML markup that may be containedwithin .docx, .docm, or .xml files after 10 January 2010.
Microsoft has issued a patch to comply with the court order.
Initiallyavailable to PC makers shipping MS Office on new PCs, the patch is now availableto all Office users.
On its website, Microsoft said, "This update was issued as a result ofa United Statescourt ruling on 22 December 2009. Generally, customers who purchase or licenseWord 2007 or Word 2003 from Microsoft after January 10, 2010 for use in theUnited States and its territories will need to use updated software that doesnot include a particular custom XML tagging implementation."
It also warned users of Office that they must install the update ifinstructed by Microsoft in a separate communication.