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Radio Reg What do you call a man with a Windows Home Server sticker on his forehead?

Steve Ballmer.

Microsoft's chief executive recently slapped on the logo and delivered a fine performance for Most Valued Professionals (MVPs) in Redmond, Washington, with talk of Silverlight and Windows 7.

Ballmer was big on motivational ”vision” but short on details. Those should come next week, though, at Microsoft’s Mix 09 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Reg software editor Gavin Clarke and All about Microsoft blogger Mary-Jo Foley tell you what you can expect in the latest episode of MicroBite.

Among the highlights:

SQL Server takes to the cloud: the popular relational database is being added to Microsoft’s Azure in a major strategy reset. Find out what this means in terms of features, functionality, and how you’ll be going back to the mainframe and VAX days for building apps.

Silverlight 3: Microsoft been promising that the next version of its browser-based media player will take Silverlight in to "major" new directions. We’ve done some digging on what's coming and see exactly what new directions Silverlight is headed in and how partners tired of relying on Flash for multimedia and the UI layer should be pleased.

Internet Explorer 8: we predict a long-awaited release to manufacturing (RTM) at Mix. With more than 2,000 major web sites still not working with IE 8 out of the box, though, RTM will see more – not fewer – challenges for Microsoft against Firefox and Chrome in the consumer space. Even MJ, an IE 8 beta tester and not an Apple lover, has been seduced by the dark side of Safari on Windows.

Oh, a little local difficulty with Linux, or war? How Microsoft's prosecution of alleged IP violation by TomTom isn't about Linux - except that it is - and how the Linux community has adopted an iron-fist-in-velvet glove strategy for dealing with it.

You can catch this week's show in the player below, or in MP3 or Ogg Vorbis format.

MicroBite 6

We’ll be at Microsoft’s Mix conference for developers and designers in March. Send your questions to us ahead of that show here: microbite@theregister.co.uk ®

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