Columbia Data Products Inc., the struggling personal-computer company, moved last week to use Chapter 7 of the federal bankrupcty code after the company's trustee determined that a successful plan of reorganization under Chapter 11 was not possible, James Koch, a lawyer for the trustee, said.

Under Chapter 7, the firm's assets will be liquidated to pay off its creditors.

Columbia Data, which had annual revenue approaching $100 million until the recent slump in the personal-computer market, is now about $40 million in debt, Koch said.

Koch said the court-appointed trustee, Richard Lowry, will continue the company's business as the assets are sold, as well as attempt to sell the entire company as an ongoing concern.

He said a number of potential buyers have displayed a "fair amount of interest" in the firm, but he declined to identify them.

The company, which is based in Columbia, Md., originally filed for protection under Chapter 11 of the bankruptcy laws last May.

Attempts to negotiate a reorganization agreement with creditors subsequently broke down, and members of Columbia's board of directors resigned en masse on June 7 as a result.

Some of Columbia's former officers then started a new company, Chesapeake Data Systems Corp., which has now become entangled in a protracted legal battle with Columbia.