Microsoft Corp. today announced it has released to manufacturing both Windows Server 2003and the 64-bit version of its SQL Server 2000 database, as well as releasing to the Web its Visual Studio .Net 2003 application development environment. Officials said that Visual Studio .Net 2003 will be released to manufacturing soon.
Bill Veghte, corporate vice president of the Redmond, Wash., companys Windows Server group, said in a teleconference that the products will launch on April 24. Sheryl Tullis, product manager for SQL Server, said that the Windows Server and the Visual Studio team will throw the launch, which will feature customers and partners testifying to the products strengths. That event will take place in San Franciscos Bill Graham Civic Auditorium.
Customers who now have a SQL Server 2000 license will be able to replace their existing license with the 64-bit version for no additional cost as of the April 24 release date. Another way to get 64-bit SQL Server 2000 will be to purchase equipment from manufacturers including Dell Computer Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co., Unisys Corp. and NEC Corp.
Veghte lauded Windows Server 2003s scalability as compared with Windows NT 4.0, pointing to tests that found it to be 100 times more scalable than NT 4, with one-tenth the cost per transaction. He also pointed to greater security and enhanced worker productivity. Customers testing Windows Server 2003 have reached server consolidation improvements of 30 percent, system management improvements that saved 20 percent, and refocusing and reallocating of IT staff of 35 percent, Veghte said. He pointed to one early adopter, GE Medical, that consolidated 70 Windows NT 4.0 domains into four Windows Server 2003 servers.
It had been expected that Veghte would address the question of whether Microsoft will release a server version of Longhorn, its next-generation Windows release, but he shied away from questions on the topic. Microsoft has been backing offfrom the topic since Senior Vice President Brian Valentine mentioned a server version of Longhorn.
"Im just celebrating [this] event now," Veghte said when the subject came up.
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