Microsoft officials said earlier this week that they planned to deliver Visual Studio "Orcas" Beta 1 for download some time in April. On April 19, they made good on their word.
All About Microsoft
Microsoft watcher Mary Jo Foley's blog covers the products, people and strategies that make Microsoft tick.
Mary Jo Foley
Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).
How do you keep growing the market for Windows and Office desktop software when you already have cornered in excess of 90 percent of the market? One way is to grow the market. Microsoft is planning to do just that, via an expansion of a program designed to seed Windows, Office and other software among students in developing nations.
On April 18, Microsoft made available to testers another new Community Technology Preview (CTP) build of Windows Home Server.
Microsoft is expecting Web 2.0 and software-as-a-service (SaaS) to "have as profound an impact on the business market as on the consumer market," said Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, in an address to a group of 80 or so Microsoft-identified "IT Pro community leaders" on the Redmond campus on April 18.
Microsoft has made available for download Exchange Server 2007 Update Rollup 1, a list of performance and operational fixes for Exchange Server 2007. But don't be confused: Update Rollup 1 is not the same as Service Pack 1.
Microsoft announced on "The Green Button" forum on April 17 that it has begun accepting applications from individuals interested in beta testing the next version of Windows Media Center, code-named "Fiji."
Microsoft is back to hedging about when the company will deliver the final version of "Orcas," the next release of its Visual Studio tool suite. Beta 1 is still due in April, however.
What, exactly, is Microsoft's Cloud OS? Is it an operating system (OS) at all? Or is more of a database (or two) in the Blue/CloudDB sky?
Microsoft is developing a tool that will allow non-programmers to customize and mash-up various Web 2.0 applications and services, say sources close to the company.
While Microsoft is attempting to distance itself from other software-as-a-service (SaaS) players, the Redmond software company is trying to help other software makers move to the SaaS distribution model.