Microsoft TechEd: Adams, Fort Knox, Project K and more codenames to know

At its TechEd conference this week, Microsoft execs are showing off a bunch of new technologies with some interesting codenames.
Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor

Going into Day 2 of Microsoft's TechEd North America conference, I'm struck by how many codenames I've heard (and learned) at the company's IT Pro/Developer event. Some are oldies, but goodies. Others are brand new, at least to me.


Here are just a few of the key ones and what we know about the technologies behind them.

Adams: The next version of Visual Studio. The VS team has decided to abandon numbers as codenames because of the mismatch between the codename/numbers and final official names. (Example: Visual Studio 2013 was codenamed VS 12.) Adams is the codename for what I expect could be designated Visual Studio 2014. I'm wondering if the follow-on will be "Baker" (if the VS team is now using mountains as thier theme).

Brooklyn: Azure Virtual Network. This is the enterprise-to-Azure networking technology Microsoft is targeting at small/mid-size business customers. ExpressRoute, a k a, Golden Gate, is the complement for enterprise customers.

Fort Knox: A new encryption feature for Office 365 business customers. Fort Knox moves beyond a single encryption key per disk to unique encryption key per file. With Fort Knox, which begins rolling out in July 2014, every file stored in SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business will be encrypted with its own key. Fort Knox also distributes a customers's files across multiple Azure Storage containers, each with separate credentials, to add an extra level of security.

Golden Gate: ExpressRoute, which is a hybrid networking service that offers users private and dedicated network connections that don't use the Internet. It is delivering ExpressRoute via partnerships with telecommunications providers like AT&T, Verizon, BT, Level 3, Equinix, Telecity and also storage-as-a-service provider Zadara

Helios: A hook that enables developers writing ASP.NET applications to use the Open Web Interface for .Net (OWIN) and plug into Microsoft's IIS Web server. Helios is part of the overall Project K/ASP.NET v.Next set of deliverables. ASP.NET expert Jeff Fritz has more on what Helios is and where it fits.

Mohoro: Microsoft's new Azure RemoteApp service, which is available in public preview form as of May 12. Azure RemoteApp allows users to provide remote access to certain Microsoft apps (including Office Professional Plus 2013) and line-of-business (LOB) apps. (The LOB piece is available to those deploying in a hybrid configuration only at this time.) Microsoft will support Windows 7/8.X, iOS and Android clients initially, with Windows Phone, Windows RT and Mac OS X client support to follow. The service will provide 50 GB of persistent storage per user and allow up to 20 users per Azure account. 

Project K: The next version of ASP.NET. (There are actually two different versions of ASP.NET v.Next -- one of which is more compact and "cloud optimized.) The "K" in this codename stands for Katana, according to Microsoft developers with whom I spoke at TechEd. Project Katana was Microsoft's first step toward providing developers with an underlying set of components for ASP.NET applications, "enabling them to be flexible, portable, lightweight."

Anyone at TechEd -- or watching from home -- hear about any other codenames worth chasing down? 


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