Microsofts Desktop Optimization Pack Sets Sales Record

More than 3 million licenses were sold over the past nine months.

BARCELONA—The Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack for Software Assurance has been the fastest selling Version 1 product in the history of Microsofts volume license program, with more than 3 million licenses sold over the past nine months.

The product is only available to those customers who have a Windows Client volume license with Software Assurance, a fact that had not been an obstacle to adoption, said Brad Anderson, the general manager for the Windows and Enterprise management division, at a press conference at the TechEd IT Forum here Nov. 12.

Andersons comments came ahead of the conferences opening keynote address by Bob Kelly, corporate vice president of infrastructure server marketing.

Anderson made several announcements around the desktop optimization pack, including giving the new name for SoftGrid Application Virtualization, now Microsoft Application Virtualization 4.5, which is also available in public beta on Microsoft Connect.


Read more here about the Microsoft Desktop Optimization Pack for Software Assurance.

"The beta includes several key features for the enterprise, including the addition of dynamic virtualization, extended enterprise scalability, and enhanced security and globalization features," he said.

The product will be made available through the desktop optimization pack and Microsoft Application Virtualization for Terminal Services in the second half of 2008.

The DART (Diagnostics and Recovery Toolset) 6.0, which enables IT staff to remove viruses and spyware from an offline system, is also in beta, but a private one, Anderson said. DART now supports both 32- and 64-bit versions of Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008, unlocks BitLocker volume encryption and enables files to be pulled from USB devices.

It will become available through the desktop optimization pack in the first half of 2008, he said.

The Microsoft Asset Inventory Service 1.0, released to the Web this month, offers a complete software inventory scan of the server environment. It is available for desktop optimization pack customers after they activate the service.

Group Policy, formerly known as PolicyMaker Standard Edition and PolicyMaker Share Manager, will now be integrated into the Group Policy Management Console.


To read more about the eight versions of Windows Server 2008, click here.

"This will be integrated into the group policy management tools in Windows Server 2008 as well as into the forthcoming Remote Server Administration Tools for Windows Vista SP1 [Service Pack 1], which will be made available as a separate download in the Windows Server 2008 time frame, and will also work in a Windows Server 2003 environment," Anderson said.

In his keynote, Kelly told the several thousand attendees that the 2008 Server launch wave was underway and would include Windows Server 2008, which will be available in the first quarter of 2008; SQL Server 2008, which will ship in the first half of 2008; and Visual Studio 2008, set to ship before the end of 2007.

"This will be the most secure, most reliable set of products that we have ever made available," he said, before announcing the Microsoft Hyper-V server, a standalone hypervisor product that will retail for $28, as well as the news that there will be eight versions of Windows Server 2008 when it is released in the first quarter of 2008.

Other announcements from the first day of TechEd IT Forum included the news that the first service pack for the 2007 Microsoft Office system will be available in early 2008. It will be compatible with Windows Server 2008 and bring improvements in stability, security and performance.


Microsoft has released FastCGI for IIS under its Go Live license. Click here to read more.

The FastCGI Extension has been released as a free download and, for the first time, Microsoft was also providing full support for the technology, which enables reliable and scalable PHP hosting on production Windows Server 2003 Web servers. Windows Server 2008 with IIS7 delivers FastCGI with a Go-Live license, making it the first Windows operating system to natively support PHP hosting, Anderson said.


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