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Small software business SCO Group won a legal victory in its multibillion dollar lawsuit against IBM over computer software code used in Linux.

Shares in SCO Group Inc. rallied as much as 34 percent on Thursday after the small software company won a legal victory in its multibillion dollar lawsuit against IBM over computer software code used in Linux.

Shares in Lindon, Utah-based SCO were up 67 cents, or 19 percent, at $4.20 in early afternoon Nasdaq trade after a federal judge in Salt Lake City ordered International Business Machines Corp. to turn over programing code to SCO’s lawyers.

The software code in question is at the center of the lawsuit, which SCO filed in 2003 accusing the computer giant of violating its trade secrets by introducing part of its Unix source code, or software blueprint, into Linux — a freely available operating system.

Additionally, SCO is also trying to get users of Linux software to pay the company licensing fees under a program.

“SCO is pleased with the court’s order and we look forward to obtaining this important discovery so we can continue with our preparation for trial,” the company said in a statement. Executives from SCO were not available for comment.

The lawsuit is scheduled to go to trial in the fall.

Officials from IBM were not immediately available for comment.

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