Monday, April 12, 2004

WinInfo Short Takes: Is Longhorn Losing Features?

WinInfo Short Takes: Is Longhorn Losing Features? "Leaked email messages from Microsoft suggest that the company is planning to cut back on a few crucial Longhorn features, a "BusinessWeek" report says, but I'm not quite sure I agree. According to the messages, Microsoft will still implement the WinFS storage engine in Longhorn, but WinFS will work only on local systems, not across networks. Furthermore, Microsoft Office 12, which originally was going to run only on Longhorn, will now also be compatible with earlier Windows versions. I don't see these changes as huge retreats from Microsoft's original plans for Longhorn. In fact, I think you could make the argument that we're going to see a lot of Longhorn technology early, rather than late. Just look at Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2): Microsoft lifted SP2's Windows Firewall, memory-protection, network-protection, and other security-oriented features directly from Longhorn. And later this year, when a major new Windows Media Player (WMP) release ships, I think you can expect to see a lot of other technologies that Microsoft originally slated for Longhorn. Yes, Longhorn is taking a long time to ship (its beta 1 release was recently delayed until mid-February 2005), but that delay doesn't mean Longhorn is the next Cairo--Microsoft's ambitious and ultimately aborted mid-1990s project to add object-oriented underpinnings to Windows NT."
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