A (Microsoft) code name a day: Creekside

If you liked the "Whistler" and "Longhorn" codenames, you'll appreciate "Creekside," as well.

Even though more and more teams at Microsoft seem to be shying away from christening their fledgling products with good, old-fashioned code names – favoring the ever-so-boring “V.Next” designation instead -- there are still some who are doing so.

Microsoft code names always have piqued my interest. They offer some great clues about the Redmondians’ development priorities, not to mention a better understanding of which future Microsoft products fit together, from a strategy standpoint.

code name
of the day:

In honor of Microsoft code-name junkies everywhere, I’m going to feature one, random Microsoft code name per work day for the rest of this month. I’ll provide as much information as I’ve been able to unearth on each, and attempt to provide some context as to how the team chose the name and how the forthcoming technology fits into the Redmond product hierarchy.

Microsoft code name of the day: Creekside

Best guess on what it is: Windows XP Starter Edition

Meaning/context of the code name: The Windows XP team was all about British Columbia when choosing code names for its products. Windows XP was code-named "Whistler," for Whistler Mountain. (And "Longhorn" was a saloon on that mountain, as Microsoft historians know.) "Creekside" is a gondola station on Whistler Mountain.

Back story: XP Starter Edition is a family of stripped-down, localized XP offerings for developing markets. The SKU was designed to help Microsoft compete with Linux and curtail piracy. Microsoft has fielded XP Starter Editions in Thailand, Malaysia, India, Brazil, Russia and many other countries.

Additional info: Microsoft is continuing its Starter Edition push with Windows Vista and plans to add many more variants to its Windows stable in the coming year. (I haven't heard whether the Creekside code name will apply to Vista Starter Edition, or if there's something more attuned to the "beautiful vistas" theme, of which Vista, Vienna, Fiji, Monaco and other current code names are a part.)

Anyone have more details to share on "Creekside"? Or do you have another Microsoft code name you’ve been wondering about? Send it my way and I’ll do my best to track down some leads on what it might be.

And if you want to keep track of the full month's worth of Microsoft code names I end up posting, bookmark this "Microsoft Codenames" page.