Unexpected Longhorn Server test build ready for download

Summary:On April 4, Microsoft delivered a new Longhorn Server release to testers. But it was yet another Community Technology Preview (CTP) interim test build, not the full-fledged Beta 3 that testers are awaiting.

Last I heard, Microsoft's next expected release of Longhorn Server was supposed to be Beta 3, expected by testers some time in April.

On April 4, Microsoft did deliver a new Longhorn Server release to testers. But it was yet another Community Technology Preview (CTP) interim test build, not a full-fledged Beta 3.

Longhorn Server Beta 3 is slated to include the Microsoft Windows PowerShell scripting environment, according to company officials. Beta 3 is expected to be the last major test build of Longhorn Server before the product is released to manufacturing.

As reported by the Windows Connected site, the newly minted Longhorn Server CTP is available to a select group of testers via the Microsoft Connect site. Windows Connected identifies the new Longhorn Server build number as 6001-16497-070330-1720.

So is Microsoft still going to drop a public Longhorn Server Beta 3 later this month? Or will it be delayed into next month? Longhorn Server is still due to ship before the end of 2007, Microsoft officials confirmed recently.

Update: Microsoft responded to my inquiry on the new CTP later on April 5. According to Senior Product Manager Helene Snell:

"This CTP is the build that Microsoft will be asking beta customers to
test and evaluate and then let us know if we are ready to ship Beta 3
and has all the features\functionality that customers will see in Beta
3.  The April 2007 CTP is another milestone on the march to Beta 3,
which is still on track for the first half of this year, and it includes
a number of enhancements to existing server roles and features, plus
some UI changes - most notably in the Server Manager tool and the
addition of Powershell."

 here's more on what's new in the latest Longhorn Server CTP on the Windows Server Team blog. 

Topics: Servers


Mary Jo Foley has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications, including ZDNet, eWeek and Baseline. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008). She also is the cohost of the "Windows Weekly" podcast on the TWiT network. Got a tip? Se... Full Bio

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