Feeds

Microsoft sidelines Longhorn database caper

NTFS reprieved

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Boost IT visibility and business value

Microsoft has scaled back its 'Big Bang', and its Future Storage initiative will build on, rather than supersede the NTFS file system, when the next version of Windows 'Longhorn' appears in 2005.

The news emerged from WinHEC last week as Paul Thurrot confirms in a round-up here.

"The oft-misunderstood Windows Future Storage (WinFS), which will include technology from the "Yukon" release of SQL Server, is not a file system," reports Thurrot. "Instead, WinFS is a service that runs on top of - and requires - NTFS."

There seems to be some confusion over at ComputerWorld, which maintains that "WinFS replaces the NTFS and FAT32 file systems used in current Windows versions," but we're inclined to back Paul on this one, as he supports his case with a direct quote.

"WinFS sits on top of NTFS. It sits on top of the file system. NTFS will be a requirement," says Microsoft's Mark Myers. (InfoWorld also refers to a WinFS as a "file system"). Myers is an 'OEM Manufacturing Program Manager' at Microsoft, whatever that means.

This much is clear: technology will be'borrowed' from Yukon, the next version of Microsoft's SQL Server, but the core will be a NTFS, not a new native raw format which only the local copy of SQL Server can read.

As first revealed here almost two years ago (when the next version of Windows was codenamed Blackcomb), "SQL Server itself becomes the base storage engine, and NTFS becomes an API-compatible driver into the store."

With so much planned for Longhorn, replacing a debugged and mature file system may have proved too radical. At least for now. Microsoft can portray this as a stepping stone to a raw native database, and as the BeOS experience proved, you don't have to have a database at the core of the system to provide database-like functionality.

Microsoft has the same goal as before, but is opting for an evolutionary rather a revolutionary route.

Also planned for Longhorn is a new graphics engine that throws much of the work onto the graphics card, much like Apple's Quartz Extreme [926kb PDF], or Stardock's WindowFX [vendor]. The new Longhorn GUI is called Aero (surely it's just an elemental coincidence that Apple's is called Aqua) and will require a graphics card with 128MB of memory.

Longhorn will drop support for FAT and FAT32 file systems.

Thurrot identifies WinFS as a service - but how long will it take for the world+dog to note that the 'FS' in WinFS does not stand for 'file system'? ®

Related Stories

Windows on a database - sliced and diced by BeOS vets
Sun talks future systems, N1, and WinFS
Windows Longhorn leaks again
Aqua eye-candy comes to the PC

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
Intel's Raspberry Pi rival Galileo can now run Windows
Behold the Internet of Things. Wintel Things
Linux Foundation says many Linux admins and engineers are certifiable
Floats exam program to help IT employers lock up talent
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
Eat up Martha! Microsoft slings handwriting recog into OneNote on Android
Freehand input on non-Windows kit for the first time
Linux kernel devs made to finger their dongles before contributing code
Two-factor auth enabled for Kernel.org repositories
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?