Microsoft Updates Its Windows Server Roadmap

Expect Longhorn Server Beta 3 in the first half of next year, but no Windows Server "Centro" for midsize businesses until 2008. And there might be a Windows Server Branch Office in the future, after all. (Microsoft Watch)

SEATTLE—Microsoft executives are sharing publicly more details on the companys Windows Server roadmap, especially Windows Longhorn Server and follow-on releases.

Despite the fact that Microsoft has been pushing out regular test builds of Longhorn Server, "prior to the Beta 2 release, we hadnt really talked a lot about the functionality in Longhorn Server," acknowledged Jeff Price, a senior director on the Windows Server team, speaking at the companys annual WinHEC here on May 23.

Microsoft is releasing to testers Beta 2 builds of Longhorn Server, Windows Vista and Office 2007, starting this week. The Beta 2 build of Longhorn Server is build 5384, the same build number as Vista Beta 2.

Microsoft is planning to release a Beta 3 build of Longhorn Server in the first half of 2007, company officials told WinHEC attendees. The final Longhorn Server product will ship in the latter half of 2007, company officials added. Until recently, a number of company watchers were expecting Microsoft to release Longhorn Server in the first part of 2007.

Microsoft is planning to continue to roll out regular Community Technology Preview (CTP) test builds of Longhorn Server throughout its development life cycle. Some time this summer, the company is planning to allow customers to deploy Longhorn Server Beta 2, in combination with its IIS 7 Web server in production environments, Price said.

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