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July 13, 2007

What’s late and what’s not

Posted by David Hunter at 10:15 AM ET.

Microsoft’s announcement this week that “Windows Server 2008, Visual Studio 2008 and Microsoft SQL Server 2008 will launch together at an event in Los Angeles on Feb. 27, 2008″ has led to a dust-up over whether Windows Server 2008 (formerly Longhorn) is late or not. Joe Wilcox says “I told ya so” and that it’s late because the launch isn’t in 2007. Microsoft’s Windows Server Division Weblog responds that there’s no delay since  ”Windows Server 2008 is still scheduled to be released by the end of 2007.” Tom Sanders suggests that Microsoft is in denial.

On the flip side of the coin, Mary Jo Foley reports that despite the big launch in February, SQL Server 2008 (formerly Katmai) won’t be released to manufacturing until 2Q08. That’s in line with Microsoft’s past promises which were suitably vague. The third amigo, Visual Studio 2008 (formerly Orcas) had no promised date and we have no inkling of the date for actual code release.

I don’t know about you, but all of this leaves me feeling a bit grumpy. I don’t much care about the exact definition of “late,” but find the launch event singularly useless since it has minimal connection with the actual availability of product. That’s not a new phenomena, but Microsoft seems to be stretching it quite a bit in order to hold a big hootenanny in February. Everybody likes a party and full employment for the marketing team, but seriously, why bother? Even worse, it makes it appear that Microsoft has no conception of their actual ship dates so they are just arbitrarily declaring a celebration and roping in any product in the vicinity.

Update: S. “Soma” Somasegar, corporate vice president of the Microsoft Developer Division weighs in on Visual Studio 2008 via his weblog:

While we will be launching our products together in February, we are still aiming to release Visual Studio 2008 and .NET FX 3.5 by the end of this year based on your feedback so far.  …  We will start the ball rolling with the release of VS2008 and .NET FX 3.5 beta 2 later this summer, and expect more exciting news, reviews, training and resources following this.

So what’s with the “launch” event?

“The February launch event is more of an opportunity to show customers, partners, and the community the wave of innovation Microsoft is delivering with all three products represented (i.e. Windows Server 2008, SQL Server 2008, and Visual Studio 2008).” 

Yep, it’s a marketing hootenanny. Microsoft presumably won’t delay any form of availability of Windows Server 2008 or Visual Studio 2008 just for this.

Filed under .NET FX 3.5, Executives, General Business, Katmai, Marketing, Microsoft, OS - Server, Public Relations, S. Soma Somasegar, Servers, Technologies, Tools, Visual Studio 2008, Windows Server 2008

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10 Responses to “What’s late and what’s not”

  1. Microsoft releases SQL Server 2008 (Katmai) CTP -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Of course, the ship date is somewhere in 2Q08 despite prominent participation in a goofy launch event next February.   Filed under Servers, Beta and CTP, Katmai, Microsoft   [Permalink] [TrackBack] [...]

  2. PerformancePoint Server 2007 to launch on Sept. 19 -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Presumably the actual availability date will be in close proximity to the launch date, but we can’t count on that from Microsoft these days as evidenced by SQL Server 2008.   Filed under Office, Microsoft, PerformancePoint Server   [Permalink] [TrackBack] [...]

  3. Microsoft reveals Vista Service Pack 1, Windows Server 2008 slips -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Release to manufacturing targeted for 1Q2008 but obviously depends on quality and is also aligned with Windows Server 2008 RTM which has the same target after slipping out of calendar year 2007. The Windows Server 2008 launch event will still take place on February 27, 2008. [...]

  4. Microsoft cash cows beat the Street for 1Q08 -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Another solid quarter for Server and Tools who has major new products launching this fiscal year. One interesting aspect was that, “Consulting, Premier and Professional product support services revenue increased $142 million or 32% primarily due to higher demand for consulting and support services in corporate enterprises.” You don’t hear much about Microsoft consulting anymore. [...]

  5. Visual Studio 2008 (Orcas) to RTM in November -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Microsoft had promised that Visual Studio 2008 (codename “Orcas”) would be released in 2007 and now the date is sometime this month: BARCELONA, Spain — Nov. 5, 2007 — Today, during the keynote address at Microsoft TechEd Developers 2007, S. “Soma” Somasegar, corporate vice president of the Developer Division at Microsoft Corp., announced that Microsoft will release Visual Studio 2008 and the .NET Framework 3.5 by the end of November 2007. [...]

  6. Microsoft RTMs Visual Studio 2008 and .NET FX 3.5 | Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] As promised earlier in the month, Microsoft yesterday released Visual Studio 2008 and .NET Framework 3.5 to manufacturing. This marks the readiness of the first of the three amigos for the lollapalooza Global Launch of Windows Server 2008, Visual Studio 2008 and SQL Server 2008 on Feb. 27, 2008. [...]

  7. Microsoft unveils Windows Server 2008 RC1 and partner hoopla | Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] “Heroes Happen Here” seems a trifle wacky, but what the heck, it’s just marketing and if you care, there are more details by following the link. [...]

  8. Microsoft beats the Street for 2Q08, raises outlook | Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Another solid quarter for Server and Tools who has major new products launching this fiscal year. [...]

  9. Visual Studio 2008 now generally available | Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] One last hurdle: the marketing hootenanny in Los Angeles on February 27 where VS2008  will be “launched” along with Windows Server 2008 and SQL Server 2008.   Filed under Tools, General Business, Visual Studio 2008, Marketing, Microsoft   [Permalink] [TrackBack] [...]

  10. Microsoft RTM’s Vista SP1 and Windows Server 2008 | Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] Yep, can’t forget the goofy asynchronous “launch event” on February 27. Actually, the availability of Windows Server 2008 is the closest thing to fresh news they will have at the event. [...]

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