'Launch Wave' of Microsoft Products Coming in 2008

Feb. 27, 2008 promises to be one of the most important dates in Microsoft's 33-year history, as it will release a host of major new products, including Windows Server 2008, Visual Studio 2008 and SQL Server 2008.

The announcement of what it calls the "2008 Global Launch Wave" was made today by COO Kevin Turner at the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference in Denver.

Currently, Windows 2008 is in beta 3 testing, with an expected release to manufacturing date (RTM) of this November, according to Redmond magazine columnist Mary Jo Foley, who blogs about Microsoft for ZDNet. Windows 2008, formerly code-named "Longhorn", is Microsoft's first new server operating system since Windows Server 2003.

Visual Studio 2008, formerly code-named "Orcas", is at the beta 1 stage, with beta 2 expected this summer, and an RTM of late this year or early next year.

SQL Server 2008, code-named "Katmai", is at the Community Technology Preview stage.

Turner made the launch announcement at the keynote address opening the conference. After recapping the massive wave of launches in Microsoft's fiscal year 2007, which ended July 1, Turner told the audience: "We're going to announce more big dogs today."

The products will launch together on Feb. 27, 2008 at an event in Los Angeles, followed by hundreds of other launch events worldwide.

As a result, Turner told the sold-out conference: "I see one thing in FY '08. I see money. I see monetization." And, he added, that vision extends to the partner ecosystem, predicting that "hundreds of billions of dollars will be available to you through monetization of these products."

Windows Server 2008 has been in development significantly longer than the other two products. Its forerunner, Windows Server 2003, was unveiled in April 2003. Longhorn's first publicly-stated schedule was for RTM in 2005. Since then, it's been plagued by delays, and even to meet the 2008 ship date it's had numerous major features stripped out.

Visual Studio and SQL Server development have fared better. VS 2005 was released in October 2005, while SQL 2005 shipped a month later.

With additional reporting by Anne Stuart in Denver.

About the Author

Keith Ward is the editor in chief of Virtualization & Cloud Review. Follow him on Twitter @VirtReviewKeith.


  • Microsoft, Google and IBM Among First Members of Open Source Security Group

    Microsoft has joined a high-powered group of tech giants in a new industry foundation aimed at improving the security of open source software.

  • Microsoft In Talks To Acquire TikTok

    A deal between Microsoft and Beijing-based ByteDance is in the works that would have Microsoft acquiring some of ByteDance's holdings in the TikTok social media service.

  • Some Cortana Features Ending as Part of Microsoft 365 Shift

    Microsoft may be promoting Cortana more as a Microsoft 365 business perk, but the digital assistant will soon see several of its capabilities falling out of support.

  • 2020 Microsoft Conference Calendar: For Partners, IT Pros and Developers

    Here's your guide to all the IT training sessions, partner meet-ups and annual Microsoft conferences you won't want to miss. (Now updated with COVID-19-related event changes.)

RCP Update

Sign up for our newsletter.

Terms and Privacy Policy consent

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.