Early Release for WinFS Beta
Microsoft threw developers a surprise gift on Monday by releasing
a beta for the WinFS storage subsystem
-- likely to be the first
of many. The company had committed to releasing a WinFS beta at
the same time it ships Windows Vista, in the second half of 2006.
That plan hasn’t changed, according to Microsoft, meaning
this is shaping up as one long beta with lots of issues to be hashed
out -- including which operating systems WinFS will support.
R2 Release Candidate Zero Now Available
Microsoft this week announced that release candidate zero (RC0)
of Windows Server 2003 R2 is now
available for download. R2 includes Windows Server 2003 with
Service Pack 1 along with enhancements for branch office servers,
identity and access management, storage management and application
development. To learn more about R2, head to Microsoft’s
Channel 9. You'll find an interview with Iain McDonald, director
of Windows Program Management, who discusses the reasons for using
RC0 over Linux, among other things.
Microsoft Delivers More Presence Tools
Microsoft last week unveiled
tools that make it easier to integrate presence information
from Live Communications Server 2005 into business applications.
Here’s a market that you can expect to heat up, as Microsoft
and lots of other companies -- including Cisco and other IP telephony
players -- are hot to integrate IM-style presence data into everyday
business applications. Partners including BrightWork, K2.net, Meridio,
OSIsoft, Siebel Systems and Singularity have already managed to
build some of the new capabilities into their apps. As Ed Simnett,
a product manager in Microsoft’s Real-Time Communications
Group puts it, "We think we're scratching the surface here."
column was originally published in our weekly
Redmond Partner Update newsletter. To subscribe,
Intel Eyes “User-Aware” Computing
At its developer conference last week, Intel was talking up the
concept of “user-aware”
computing, which involves a platform that can “take care
of itself, knows who we are, where we are, and tries to anticipate
what we want done," according to one exec. Sounds like science
fiction to me, but if it’s real it could be a big opportunity
for ISVs as well as services providers, who will undoubtedly be
needed to help when the stuff breaks.
Bruce Schneier, the CTO of Counterpane Internet Security, is a well-respected
guy in security circles and people often stand up and take notice
of his opinions -- myself included. So it’s not exactly good
news for Microsoft when Schneier says he
senses something funny in the company’s insistence that
the work going on in the Trusted Computing Group toward building
inherently secure computers should apply only to hardware, not software.
He thinks Microsoft is trying to stall the group’s best practices
document such that it won’t apply to Windows Vista.
Two Scores for Microsoft Legal Team
On the other hand, it’s been a very good week for Microsoft
on the legal front. First, it helped authorities arrest
the two men believed to be responsible for releasing the Zotob
worm -- in Morocco and Turkey, no less.
Closer to home, a
Connecticut man pleaded guilty to selling stolen Microsoft source
code and faces up to 10 years in prison.
Posted by Paul Desmond on August 31, 2005 at 11:53 AM