Vista: What You Need to Know
Microsoft Watch's Mary Jo Foley provides answers to your Vista questions.How close to shipping is Vista (really)? Microsoft is expected to drop Vista Beta 2aka Vista Consumer CTP (Community Technology Preview)as early as this week at WinHEC, and no later than a week or two from now. After a few more release candidates, which will go to smaller and smaller subsets of testers, the product will go to manufacturing. Microsoft still says volume licensees will be able to get code in November 2006, and for everyone else it will be available in January 2007. If Beta 2 isnt rock-solid, expect a push back in all dates by one calendar quarter, at least. Which Vista SKU will be right for me?
There are six primary Windows Vista SKUs: Windows Starter 2007, Windows Vista Enterprise, Windows Vista Home Basic, Windows Vista Home Premium, Windows Vista Ultimate and Windows Vista Business. Most enterprises are likely to gravitate to Vista Enterprise, which includes BitLocker drive encryption; Virtual PC Express virtual-machine support; the SUA (Subsystem for Unix-based Applications), which is designed to allow Unix applications to run on Vista machines; and access to all worldwide languages supported by Vista via a single deployment image. But Enterprise will be available to volume licensees only. Small businesses might prefer Vista Ultimate.