Allchin: Vista won't RTM next week

Allchin: Vista won't RTM next week

Summary: Vista is not on track to be released to manufacturing on October 25, after all, according to Jim Allchin, co-president of Microsoft's platforms and services division.

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TOPICS: Windows
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The Microsoft countdown clock was wrong. (Yeah, maybe it's running Windows Vista and blue screened. Teehee.)

Vista is not on track to be released to manufacturing on October 25, according to Jim Allchin, co-president of Microsoft's platforms and services division.

"We won't RTM (release to manufacturing) in a week," Allchin told me on October 18. "We are in pretty good shape. And there are still months before (the January 2007) launch."

Allchin said Microsoft is looking at Vista across five categories right now to determine whether it's RTM-ready.

The five: Reliability, security, performance, driver coverage and application compatibility. While some of these categories -- such as driver coverage and app compatibility -- may not be as robust as many would expect in order for Vista to RTM, Microsoft looks at things a bit differently, Allchin said.

"We have to be done with Vista before the ecosystem can finish the rest," Allchin said.

In other words, while many Vista drivers are still MIA and a number of applications are still not 100-percent Vista-compatible, vendors are giving Microsoft assurances that they will be by certain dates. And Allchin said he's feeling good about those targets.

Allchin would not say when Vista will RTM. But my new guess is early November. And like CRN, I am now hearing that the business launch of Vista and Office 2007 is looking like the very end of November. So I am revising my November 9 business launch guesstimate to November 30.

Any other guesses (educated or not)?

Topic: Windows

About

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).

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55 comments
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  • MSFT will release to RTM in January.

    Mark my words. They will miss the launch target again.
    aristotle_z
    • I think MS should RTM in January

      I dont work for Microsoft nor do I have inside/insider knowledge.

      I think Microsoft should make just one announcement to launch Vista and Office n January rather than a week and week approach.

      If you are confident to be done before and are actually done before, (doesnt hurt to test more or to take a short break) and launch in January.
      zzz1234567890
      • RTM needs to happen ...

        ... a good two months ahead of consumer availability to give OEMs time for tweaks. The Windows Update process is far more mature than it was in 2001 and a lot of tweaking and bug patches can be released during that two-month Window. If MS waits until JAN for RTM, it will be March or April before consumers see VISTA. From what I've seen, Vista is ready for the pioneers among us to start pounding on it in earnest.
        M Wagner
        • RTM will happen in Nov...

          Don't forget that a LOT of business' paid lots of good money for the Software Assurance. They almost HAVE to get something out the door this year - or else feel the wrath of corporate consumers... It's a trust thing. Violate the Software Assurance thing - and they'll NEVER be able to sell another one like it.
          Wolfie2K3
    • seems hopelessly optimistic to me

      A date in the next two weeks seems hopelessly optimistic to me - the betas have shown that it's clearly not ready yet. They need at least another iteration/test release to get the wrinkles out of it.

      What happened to their "We'll get it right, even if it means a delay" mantra?
      jinko
      • The Betas?

        You're basing your statement off the beta's? Like Beta 1 and 2? If so get your head out of the ground and see how far they really have progressed with the first and second (if you can even get your hands on it) release candidates. In my experience I no longer run WinXP and have now begun running RC2 full time. I think they will have no trouble RTM by the end of November.
        JDAWGW
  • RTM = Rush to Manufacturing?

    teehee indeed
    mgardner
  • If Vista never showed that would be the best news for consumers

    How could MICROSUCKS possible RTM when Vista can't even run basic PC hardware? IE7 was released one day and it's already FUBAR.

    The fraud that is MICROSUCKS needs to be taken down by the DOJ & FTC.
    BeGoneFool
    • YUP!!!

      Tested Vista RC1, it's a pig and I can't even make backup copies of CD's..
      drew1313
    • Until someone offers a better product ...

      ... for the masses (not GEEKS like you and me), Microsoft is it.

      Arguably, Apple Macintosh is a 'better' consumer product but has no entry-level offerings.

      Arguably, Linux is technically superior and (perhaps) is less expensive but the consumer cannot buy it preloaded on a brand-name computer.

      OEMs will ship Vista when it is ready, and not before but they have to get the 'golden code' first. I expect MS to make mid-NOV for RTM.
      M Wagner
      • "Arguably, Linux is technically superior and (perhaps) is less expensive...

        ...the consumer cannot buy it preloaded on a brand-name computer."

        Exactly. Why is it that Microsoft can still ensure that only Windows is preloaded onto OTHER MANUFACTURERS hardware? Does Microsoft make the computer (like Apple)? No! So WHY does Microsoft get to tell OEM's which OS MUST be loaded? Operating Systems need to be excluded from the OEM hardware purchase so the consumer/buyer can make a real choice, not have one 'included for free' (as the perception goes).
        nomorems
        • re:........

          The answer is demand. MS gives the OEM's a price break for loading their OS, and I'm quite sure they request that their OS is loaded, but they do not "get to tell OEM's which OS MUST be loaded".

          Consumer demand for a PC with no OS pre-loaded is low. Consumer demand for a PC with Linux pre-loaded is low. Consumer demand for a PC with Windows OS pre-loaded is high. Hence, the PC's are pre-loaded with a Windows OS. Simple economics.
          Badgered
        • Since i work for an OEM that offers Linux preloaded ...

          ... I would be glad to answer. Windows PCs sell. Linux ones do not. With Windows we can also upsell software. With Linux we do not. Redhat and Suse charge more to install Linux on the box then Microsoft does. We sell new hardware and many times Linux does not have the drivers ready for launch. Windows has a family of tools for pre-installing Windows in a multi-configuration environment and Linux does not. Do you need any more reasons?
          ShadeTree
          • Reasons....

            [b]... I would be glad to answer. Windows PCs sell. Linux ones do not. With Windows we can also upsell software. With Linux we do not. Redhat and Suse charge more to install Linux on the box then Microsoft does. We sell new hardware and many times Linux does not have the drivers ready for launch. Windows has a family of tools for pre-installing Windows in a multi-configuration environment and Linux does not. Do you need any more reasons?[/b]

            Nope... I think that pretty much covers anything I could possibly think of and then some.
            Wolfie2K3
      • Preloaded Linux

        <p>Dell offers <a href="http://www.dell.com/content/products/productdetails.aspx/precn_390?c=us&l=en&s=bsd&cs=04">Red Hat Enterprise.</a><p>

        <p>Though RHEL does cost money, and is targeted more towards businesses based on the subscription, it is a brand name offering.</p>

        <p>Also, the 'Golden Code' should also include perfected WGA/SPP code. I can only imagine a few virus writers are already working on nasty little viruses to cause the SPP to trip. I manage about 15 Windows and 2 Linux computers at work. I really feel for IT guys in large corporations if that virus ever gets written!</p>
        DagonSphere
  • Maybe they'll modify the EULA while they are at it . . .

    Even if it were GOLD this week, I wouldn't buy it.

    The one transfer limitation was the last nail in the coffin.

    It's DOA if it comes with that crap attached.
    startx.jeff
  • Can Hardly Wait

    So I can NOT buy it.
    Hasta-La-Vista..aaaaaahhhhh!
    Ole Man
  • Most likely...

    they haven't gotten all the bugs worked in yet. Gotta have enough to justify Service Pack 1 in a few months...
    jasonp@...
    • Service Packs and Bugs

      I do not work for Microsoft, but I do work for a large software manufacturer, and I can tell you first-hand that bugs are not left in to "justify" a service pack. Bugs are left in for a variety of reasons:

      1) Consumer Demand - You can only push the release date so many times before your customers hate you and look for other options.

      2) Low-impact bugs may be more trouble to fix than they are worth.

      3) Fixing some bugs could break other things.

      To those that are NOT in the business of software development, you must understand that a certain number of KNOWN bugs will always be in every piece of software. There is no such thing as bug-free software.

      Regarding Service Packs - Would you prefer that they do not fix the issues at all?
      Russedl
  • Why rush?

    Vista wasn't ready for a late summer/early fall release so why rush.

    What IT department is going to start a new testing / deployment regiment headed into the holidays? Since they missed the "get it on the shelf for x-mas" window they might as well hold it until mid to late January.

    The days between late November and mid January will have absolutely no effect on sales and every bug or driver problem they catch before release is one less patch that has to be done after the release.

    Bjorn A Freeman
    bjornafreeman@...