Microsoft has sent in its preliminary response to the European Commission's queries about antitrust complaints made against the company.

Michael Tscherny, a spokesman for the European Commission, said today: "The response arrived electronically early Saturday morning. The company has, however, asked for an extension until April 15 to provide further documents as technical support for this initial reply."

The Commission has granted the extension.

The Commission launched the preliminary inquiry in early February to investigate allegations that Windows 2000 is designed to reinforce Microsoft's dominant position on (PC) operating systems in other markets, such as servers and electronic commerce.

Depending on Microsoft's response, the Commission will then decide whether the allegations are justified, and then whether to launch a formal investigation to determine if Microsoft has abused its dominant position in the PC operating system market.