Windows Embedded 'Quebec' due in 2010

Windows Embedded 'Quebec' due in 2010

Summary: Work is underway on the 2010 successor to Windows Embedded Standard 2009. The next Windows Embedded release is codenamed "Quebec." Unlike the 2009 release, the Quebec product will make use of a number of features that are part of Windows Vista.


Although it hasn't said much about its plans for a Vista-based successor to its Windows XP-based  embedded operating system, Microsoft already is working on one.

Microsoft released during the first week of June a new test build of its latest Windows XP-based embedded operating system, known as "Windows Embedded Standard 2009," the final version of which is slated to ship by the end of 2008.

However, Microsoft also is readying the 2010 successor to this product -- another Windows Embedded release codenamed "Quebec." Unlike the 2009 release of Windows Embedded, the Quebec product will make use of a number of features that are part of Windows Vista.

Microsoft is on tap to share some information about the Vista-based embedded release at its TechEd Developers Conference this week in Orlando. A first widescale Community Technology Preview (CTP) test build of Quebec is due out next year.

Microsoft's Windows Embedded family of products, which Microsoft sells to device makers, is designed to power thin client terminals, point-of-service terminals, gaming devices, medical-imaging systems, DVRs and industrial-automation systems, among other products. Windows Embedded is not at the core of cell phones or ultra-low-cost PCs (ULPCs), however. Windows Mobile phones currently are built on top of a Windows CE-based core and ULPCs run full-fledged Windows. (Microsoft has OK'd ULPC makers shipping Windows XP on their systems through 2010.)

The forthcoming Quebec embedded release will include BitLocker drive encryption, Windows Firewall, Windows Defender, Address-Space Load Randomization -- and on the memory-management front, support for SuperFetch, ReadyBoost and Dynamic System Address Space. On certain devices, the Quebec release will also provide as optional components Aero user-interface, Windows Media Player 11 and various Internet Explorer 7 features. Unlike Microsoft's XP-based embedded releases, which are 32-bit only, Quebec will support both 32-bit x86 and 64-bit x64 processors.

Not surprisingly, support for all these features comes at a cost -- size. According to a slide deck available to TechEd attendees, while Windows XP Embedded core's minimum image size is around 40MB, according to a slide deck to be presented at TechEd on June 6, Quebec's core is expected be around 300MB -- not counting all the optional add-ons like Media Player, IE 7, etc.

The other cost is Quebec will require product activation; XP Embedded does not. The Quebec release will require basic retail activation or OEM activation. There will be a default evaluation product key that will allow the Quebec image to run for 30 days without activation.

Topics: Software, Microsoft, Operating Systems, Windows


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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  • Embedded software that requires activation?

    Good luck with that.
  • RE: Windows Embedded 'Quebec' due in 2010

    Québec, nice codename. I actually work in this city!

    And 2008 is the 400 anniversary of the foundation for Québec City in 1608.
  • What a company

    "Windows XP Embedded core?s minimum image size is
    around 40MB, according to a slide deck to be presented at
    TechEd on June 6, Quebec?s core is expected be around
    300MB ? not counting all the optional add-ons like Media
    Player, IE 7, etc."

    A company that really understands the embedded market;-

    "The other cost is Quebec will require product activation;
    XP Embedded does not. "

    A company that really understands embedded

    If only we had an alternative that didn't require activation, royalty free, core size starting from 4MB. Probably the
    reason we're all using Linux.
    Richard Flude
  • RE: Quebec, why???

    Re Quebec;
    Why not just name it "Paris, or France"? or "Paris France"??.
    Why Quebec? is there is there any severe sucking up going on here. Are there really that many "Quebeckers" so as to make this extravaganza worthwhile or is this yet another mistake in a long line of them that WE the Paying Public will have to cover. I suspect the latter.
    Questions remains, Why Quebec, hmmm? France Not good enough??
    What really going on at Microsoft?
    Has Steve left the Cage door open and the Moneys are running the Zoo?
    Sure feels it it.
    Thank you for your attention.
    Aaron A Baker
    • Quebec

      Ever notice most things you read, be they contests, language laws, etc. usually have a disclaimer that basically says: "not available in Quebec" or words to that effect?
      Maybe this software will do the same!
      Or maybe even the reverse. LOL
      • Laws

        Because of a law in Quebec that says something like: All contests must be aproved by the ministry of games, lottery and alcool... or was it Loto-quebec... I dont remember precisesly.

        PS: language law?
    • Great...

      I wondered(when I saw that codename) how mutch time till some idiotic Quebec Basher would appear.

      It's named after Quebec City(as there also another project that was once named Gatineau).
  • RE: Windows Embedded 'Quebec' due in 2010

    Let's not hear anymore about MinWin OK?

    Nobody is listening about trimming code and slimming the OS down, not up.

    What is the mindset at M$ really believing? They must think their apps just totally blow everything else away. DRM the heck out of it, while you're at it.
  • DRM

    Oh have a DRM mechanism that will install DRM Onto MS Paint, or perhaps our Internet explorer, which sucks anyways.

  • RE: Windows Embedded 'Quebec' due in 2010

    Oh boy...

    Well get ready for Toronto requesting a code name soon...(or crying for it)

    (late bday present for Quebec City perhaps...)
  • RE: Windows Embedded 'Quebec' due in 2010

    Quebec, why?
    I suggest an answer:
    In 2008, Quebec city celebrates the 400th anniversary of its foundation in 1608 and is
    the oldest city in North America.
    It is a point, no?

    Andre Lemire
  • RE: Windows Embedded 'Quebec' due in 2010

    I understand the original question, "Why Quebec".
    I am also curious, but fail to understand the reasoning behind the later part.

    How can this be sucking Quebec city, or the whole province of Quebec if you want.
    Considering the potential economic advantage of "sucking up" to people living in Quebec is rather minuscule.

    You wouldn't be jealous by any chance or something ?

    On a side note, is there someone that knows the reason behind the use of "Quebec" as a name
  • RE: Windows Embedded 'Quebec' due in 2010

    Wow... Windows Vista annoyances for embedded systems, which means, a sluggish and heavy desktop O/S transposed for small, resource-tight computers. What a winning team.
    I think most developpers will stick to XPe and pass Qu?bec and wait until the next release, based on 7. (codename: Montr?al?, Ottawa? Toronto?... Gasp?? :-).
  • RE: Windows Embedded 'Quebec' due in 2010

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