What drew the attention of the government was when Microsoft began to bundle their browser (Internet Explorer) into the Windows platform, which they had given certain incentives to computer manufacturers to pre-install onto their computers. By doing this, Microsoft quickly gained a large market of the world's Internet browsers.
To the U.S. government, Microsoft's hold on the computer business for operating systems, software, and browsers looked like a monopoly. After a long legal battle, federal Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson issued his Final Judgment on June 7, 2000 ordering Microsoft to split into two separate and competing companies.
Microsoft appealed the decision directly to the Supreme Court, but was told on September 26, 2000 that a lower court would first hear the appeal. The appeals process continued for a year and then on November 2, 2001, an agreement was reached between the Department of Justice and Microsoft. Microsoft would not be split but would be more transparent in its sharing of programming language with third-party developers.