A (Microsoft) code name a day: Quattro

Although it's been a while since Windows-Server watchers have heard any new info on Microsoft's plans for a home-server product, it seems that "Quattro" is still alive and kicking.

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: Quattro Best guess on what it is: Windows Server for home users

Meaning/context of the code name: I'm not sure when and how the "Quattro" code name became attached to the "Windows Home Server" SKU that Microsoft has been contemplating for a while. Given that the Microsoft mid-market server is code-named "Centro," I wonder if there's some kind of connection there. I also am not sure the "Quattro" name is still in use, even though Microsoft allegedly has put some folks under non-disclosure about its plans for a home server.

Back story: In June, 2005, Microsoft server and tools chief Bob Muglia dropped a bombshell in an online Web chat. He mentioned that Microsoft was mulling the idea of a Windows Home Server type of SKU. Since that time, Microsoft has gone quiet about its plans in that space. Instead, the company has been pushing Windows Vista Ultimate as the closest thing to a home media-hub operating system that it has.

Additional info: Microsoft has been rounding out its family of Windows Server offerings over the past couple of years. In addition to the various enterprise-focused Windows Server offerings, there also is Windows Small Business Server (the next version of which is code-named "Cougar") and Windows Midmarket Server ("Centro," which is due out next year). Initially, Quattro was believed to be Windows Server 2003 R2 for home users; now I'm wondering if it will more likely debut as a Longhorn Server one-off.

Anyone have any additional "Quattro" info to share? Or 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.