I was peripherally involved in that (my employer was part of the lawsuit) and Microsoft releasing the specs for RDP. It was somewhat encumbered which would have been hugely problematic for free software projects, but not for commercial entities (who I worked for).
I'd reverse engineered RDP, but that is way more time consuming than starting with specs. That work was put into escrow along with my papers, hexdump printouts with marker highlighting and scribbles etc.
Only one engineer was given access to the RDP spec which was kept in his locked office. Even the component including RDP was built by him in his office on computers in his office which were not networked.
I don't know if what we did was because our lawyer was too paranoid, or not paranoid enough!