Another chapter has been written in the continuing legal feud between Hewlett-Packard Co. and Xerox Corp., as a federal judge yesterday dismissed a patent-infringement lawsuit filed against HP by Xerox.

Xerox originally filed the lawsuit in May 1998 in US District Court in the Western District of New York, accusing HP of using patented Xerox technology in some of its ink-jet printers.

HP lawyers later filed a motion for summary judgment with US District Judge Michael Telesca, who acted on the motion and dismissed the suit.

"This is big for us because the products which Xerox said infringed patents are in a large portion of our ink-jet line," Nolan Sundrud, an HP spokesman, said today.

Xerox said they will appeal the ruling. "We are confident the courts will ultimately conclude that HP has illegally used patented and valuable Xerox technology in developing its inkjet product line and that we should be appropriately compensated," James Firestone, president of the Xerox Channels Group, said in a statement.

The companies still have four lawsuits pending against each other involving printing and imaging patents, Sundrud said.