Microsoft is readying six core Vista packages, or SKUs, plus two additional releases customized for the European Union that wont bundle in Windows Media Player, as ordered by European antitrust regulators.
The six Windows Vista variants are: Windows Starter 2007; Windows Vista Enterprise; Windows Vista Home Basic, Windows Vista Home Premium, Windows Vista ultimate, and Windows Vista Business.
Also on the list are two additional releases, Windows Vista Home Basic N and Windows Vista Business N. The "N" releases are those which do not include Media Player.
Microsoft currently offers six core Windows XP SKUs: The line up includes XP Home, Professional, Media Center, Tablet PC, and Professional x64, and Windows XP Starter. (Microsoft also offers "N" versions of its XP Home and XP Professional releases, as stipulated by the European antitrust regulators.)
With Vista, there will not be separate Tablet, Media Center or x64 SKUs, said Barry Goffe, director of Windows client product management. All of the planned Vista versions, except Windows Vista Starter, will be available in both 32- and 64-bit flavors.
All SKUs will integrate Internet Explorer 7.0, the new Vista desktop search, parental controls and Windows Defender anti-spyware technology.