A federal judge on Friday dismissed a Utah company\'s $1 billion (Dh3.678 billion) federal antitrust lawsuit against Microsoft Corp. after a jury failed to reach a unanimous verdict in a case so important to the computer giant that it put Bill Gates on the stand for two days last month. Novell Inc. sued the software giant in 2004, claiming Microsoft duped it into developing the once-popular WordPerfect writing program for Windows 95 only to pull the plug so Microsoft could gain market share with its own product. Novell says it was later forced to sell WordPerfect for a $1.2 billion loss. The trial began two months ago with jurors getting the case on Wednesday. After much confusion, and some perplexing questions from the panel, they told US District Judge J. Frederick Motz they were deadlocked by early Friday evening. He repeatedly asked them if they could keep trying. \"This has been a very long and expensive case,\" Motz told the panel. Novell attorneys pleaded with Motz to give the panel just one more day. In the end, however, the 12 jurors told the judge they were \"hopelessly\" deadlocked, and they later told lawyers a single holdout refused to vote in Novell\'s favour. Article continues below \"He had strongly held views about the technical evidence and refused to budge,\" Novell attorney Jeffrey Johnson said. Jurors offered no comment after the trial. Novell was left with little to show for a decade of effort, but the company said it will seek to retry the case with a new jury. \"Although it\'s a technically complicated case, we\'re hoping to convince another jury that our claims have merit,\" Novell\'s corporate counsel Jim Lundberg said. Microsoft said it would file a motion asking the judge to dismiss Novell\'s complaint for good and avoid a second trial. \"We remain confident that Novell\'s claims don\'t have any merit and look forward to the next steps in the process,\" said Steven Aeschbacher, Microsoft\'s associate general counsel. Novell waited until 10 years after Microsoft left WordPerfect behind to file the lawsuit. The company said it was waiting for the US government\'s antitrust enforcement against Microsoft to wrap up. At first Novell\'s case was dismissed, but it was later reinstated on appeal. Gates said that the company\'s preferred Word software was superior to WordPerfect, which was a \"bulky, slow, buggy product\" that did not integrate well with Windows 95. Novell could have worked around the problem but failed to react quickly, he said. Defence: Gates testifies Microsoft lawyers have argued that Novell\'s loss of market share was its own doing because the company didn\'t develop a compatible WordPerfect program until long after the rollout of Windows 95. WordPerfect once had nearly 50 per cent of the market for word processing, but its share quickly plummeted to less than 10 per cent as Microsoft\'s own Office programs took hold. aGates testified last month that he had no idea his decision to drop a tool for outside developers would sidetrack Novell. Gates said he was acting to protect Windows 95 and future versions from crashing.