The Windows client team may have decided that it's done talking futures. But the Windows Server team isn't afraid to show off its planned roadmap.
At the Windows Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC) on May 16, Microsoft officials talked about the company's next few planned releases. As previously indicated, Microsoft is readying several Windows-Server-2008-based offerings for next year, and the next full-fledged version on Windows Server -- to which Microsoft is still referring as "Longhorn Server R2" -- in 2009.
Due in 2008 are the "Cougar" version of Windows Small Business Server, the "Centro" Windows Midmarket Server and the next version of Microsoft's Unified Data Storage Server, said Bill Laing, General Manager of the Windows Server division.
The Longhorn Server R2 release is planned to hit two years after Windows Server 2008, a k a Longhorn Server, will be released to manufacturing.
The server team committed several years ago to releasing a new version of Windows Server every two years. Since Windows Server 2003, the team has delivered on that commitment, alternating between major and minor relases.
The Windows client team members are stressing at the show here that they have made a conscious decision not to talk futures until the releases are completely locked down, so as not to overpromise and underdeliver. The client team does not want its decisions to add/cut features to be a matter of public discussion and customer confusion, officials stressed this week at WinHEC.
Given that client and server are built on the same Windows code base, their diverging strategies are quite interesting.