Cause of the delay

By Lisa Vaas  |  Posted 2004-03-10 Print this article Print

One Yukon alpha and beta tester who requested anonymity said that, although Microsoft hadnt explicitly told him about the delay, it was easy enough to read the tea leaves by considering the scheduling of beta versions. "If you—as I did—can put 2 and 2 together, you can see that 04 is not happening at all," said the tester. He noted that there has been no word about Beta 2, which was supposed to be out this summer. In fact, there could be another "pre-beta 2" build in the offing. "That means Beta 2 must be a way off," he said. He offered no theories on why the beta is late but added that, as yet, he hasnt heard "a peep" about Beta 2. Sources said that the delay is attributable to evolving requirements, as security, integration with .Net, and competition with RDBMS rivals IBM and Oracle have all pushed the focus of Yukon development hither and thither.
"Weve called [Yukon] a montage release," said Betsy Burton, an analyst for Gartner Inc., in San Jose, Calif. "Its being pulled in different directions by different groups within Microsoft. Senior management had a vision for where they saw Microsoft going; developers had a vision; [and] as .Net evolved, that began to influence SQL Server." Then the Slammer worm struck some 14 months ago, Burton noted, and played yet more havoc with Yukons release date, as the development focus shifted to security. Microsoft CEO Bill Gates Secure Computing initiative also got handed down in the middle of Yukons development cycle, causing all new development to come to a halt in order to align Yukon with the initiatives dictates.
Because of these shifting requirements, Gartner, amongst many observers, had already foreseen Yukons general availability being postponed until the first half of 2005, Burton said. "Based on the evolving requirements for this product, and based on the current timing for Yukon, and based on where the product is today in terms of its beta cycle, we dont believe Yukon will be delivered until the first half of 2005," she said. Next page: Microsofts Rizzo denies the charges of wishy-washy development.

Lisa Vaas is News Editor/Operations for and also serves as editor of the Database topic center. Since 1995, she has also been a Webcast news show anchorperson and a reporter covering the IT industry. She has focused on customer relationship management technology, IT salaries and careers, effects of the H1-B visa on the technology workforce, wireless technology, security, and, most recently, databases and the technologies that touch upon them. Her articles have appeared in eWEEK's print edition, on, and in the startup IT magazine PC Connection. Prior to becoming a journalist, Vaas experienced an array of eye-opening careers, including driving a cab in Boston, photographing cranky babies in shopping malls, selling cameras, typography and computer training. She stopped a hair short of finishing an M.A. in English at the University of Massachusetts in Boston. She earned a B.S. in Communications from Emerson College. She runs two open-mic reading series in Boston and currently keeps bees in her home in Mashpee, Mass.

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