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Windows Woundup Where it's at with Whistler

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Welcome to the new-look Windows Woundup, which will wend its way awound the Windows sites on a daily basis. So if you have anything you would like to see covered or hear about, pass it on! To begin this week, I'll give you a brief roundup of what happened last week at Microsoft's headquarters.

What happened to Windows Whistler? Things have been quiet for a while, but it seems Microsoft should be releasing Beta 2 of its upcoming consumer/business operating system next month. According to CRN, however, only a restricted number of technical testers will get this code in February. The rest of us will have to wait for a further 60-90 days.

As always, Microsoft doesn't want to spit out the Whistler/Blackcomb timetable, but we do know that it's cramming as much .NET functionality into Whistler as possible so that Visual Studio.NET users can create .NET-targeted applications that will run on Whistler. Also included in this update is DirectX 8, Windows Media Player 8 and Internet Explorer 6.



An earlier report at WinInfo stated that the first release candidate (RC1) of Office 10 will be released "in the next few weeks". Due to ship by mid-year, Office 10 is the first major update to Office since Office 2000 and the last expected non-.NET release of Office.




Microsoft recently released updated hardware compatibility lists for

Windows Me

,

Windows 2000

,

Whistler x86 Beta

and

Whistler Itanium 64 Beta

. So if you're upgrading, be sure to check these out and make sure your hardware works. Thanks to Brady Moore for this bit.




Trying to rule the roost in e-business, as it has done with software, Microsoft has released plans on the successor to Commerce Server 2000 - Thorium and Casbah (yeah, each year the codenames get worse). Commerce Server 2000 Enterprise Edition, code-named Thorium, is a high-end version of the platform designed for the hosting environment and ASPs. Thorium, which reportedly can support hundreds or thousands of multicompany storefronts, or e-business sites, on one server cluster, is being prepped for release in the first half of 2001. The next major version of Commerce Server on deck, code-named Casbah, is slated to be fully .NET-enabled and released during the second half of 2002. ®

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