An European Union judge has dismissed Microsoft's appeal for a suspension of curbs imposed on it by the EU.

In March the EU's executive Commission levied sanctions and a record fine on Microsoft, saying that the company had abused its monopoly in Europe.

Microsoft was ordered to release a version of its Windows operating system in Europe without its Windows Media Player (WMP), and reveal enough server software code to allow rivals to build competing products that work well with Windows. It also levied a fine of €497 million, which Microsoft has already paid; the sum is being held in a special account pending the appeal's outcome.

Microsoft appealed against the decision requesting that the penalties be suspended until the main case finishes.

Reuters obtained a court statement that said: "The evidence adduced by Microsoft is not sufficient to show that implementation of the remedies imposed by the Commission might cause serious and irreparable damage."

According to the source close to the company it is likely that Microsoft would be expected to comply quickly, probably within a couple of weeks.