Microsoft Corp. last week announced availability of the first Community Technology Preview of its next-generation "Indigo" communications subsystem—a service-oriented infrastructure built on top of Web services protocols.
With the release of the CTP bits, Microsoft beats a schedule that had some, even internally, wondering if the company would get the early version of the technology out on time.
Ari Bixhorn, Microsofts lead product manager for Web services, said the advanced Web service support in Indigo provides interoperable, secure, reliable and transacted messaging, which were the top issues developers sought after Microsoft whet their appetites for Indigo at the Microsoft Professional Developers Conference in Los Angeles in 2003, Bixhorn said.
Microsoft officials said the Indigo infrastructure simplifies development through a service-oriented programming model where programs are composed using asynchronous message passing. To enable this programming model, Indigo provides a set of technologies for creating, processing and transmitting messages.
Indigo represents a unified programming model for building applications that support the broad array of Web services standards, which Microsoft refers to as the WS-* specifications. Indigo combines the features of ASP.Net Web Services, .Net Remoting, .Net Enterprise Services, WSE (Web Services Enhancements) and System.Messaging, the company said.
In addition to the Indigo CTP, Microsoft released the second CTP for its next-generation presentation subsystem, known as "Avalon," Bixhorn said. Microsoft is also including a software development kit that features tools and documentation. And developers will also get the latest release of the .Net Framework Version 2.0 as part of the content made available on MSDN, according to Bixhorn.
"This is the first time developers will see all the features we will ship in Beta 1 [of Indigo]," Bixhorn said. Microsoft is slated to release Beta 1 of Indigo in the first half of this year, "and were still on track for RTM [release to manufacturing] in 2006. And well be doing a Beta 2 between now and then," he said.