Gates: Longhorn to come with server and Office updates

Microsoft Corp. is preparing Office and server products to accompany the launch of Longhorn, the successor to Windows XP, Microsoft Chairman and Chief Software Architect Bill Gates said Thursday, reigniting speculation about a server version of Longhorn.

"Longhorn is not just a release of a Windows client," Gates said in a meeting with financial analysts at Microsoft's Redmond, Washington, headquarters. Longhorn is a "big bet" for Microsoft and the company at the same time will have "advances in Office and server" products, Gates said.

Microsoft Senior Vice President Eric Rudder in a slide showing the future of servers mentioned "Windows Server Longhorn." Rudder recently added Windows Server to the list of Microsoft units he heads up.

Gates' comments and Rudder's presentation renew speculation about a server version of Longhorn, which Microsoft has at several times said will be a client-only release, but has also suggested may be released in a server version.

Gates did not give a timeframe for Longhorn, but Microsoft at the Windows Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC) in May set 2005 as the year for Longhorn.

Microsoft in April released Windows Server 2003 and is planning to release Office 2003 later this year. With Longhorn planned for 2005, it could mean that Windows Server 2003 and Office 2003 will be outdated in two years, an upgrade cycle that is shorter than Microsoft's typical three-year cycle.

"We have not set a rate on a next server release, but we hit about every three years. Longhorn is in the same zone as the three years," said Bob O’Brien, group product manager in Microsoft's Windows Server division in an interview ahead of the financial analyst meeting on Wednesday.

Two industry analysts attending the Thursday meeting were divided on what Gates' comments mean.

"I think Microsoft will have to at least refresh Windows Server 2003 when it releases Longhorn," said Rob Helm, research director at Directions on Microsoft Inc., an independent research firm in Kirkland, Washington.

Joe Wilcox, a Washington, D.C.-based Jupiter Research senior analyst, on his firm's Microsoft Monitor log said a server release of Longhorn is a possibility, however "I wouldn't place any bets yet. Microsoft is still early in its Longhorn plans, and roadmaps are by no means final."

Not only do the roadmaps not appear final, questions remain about the technology underlying Longhorn. "We're doing a new file system which is called next-generation Windows, or WinFS," Gates said about Longhorn. At WinHEC, however, Microsoft officials said WinFS is not a new file system, but a storage technology that is built on the existing NTFS file system.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Joris Evers

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Father’s Day Gift Guide

Brand Post

Bitdefender 2019

Bitdefender solutions stop attacks before they even begin! Get cybersecurity that 500 MILLION users already have and trust.

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?