WinInfo Daily UPDATE, February 6, 2003

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February 6, 2003--In this issue:

1. NEWS AND VIEWS
- Microsoft Preps Server and Desktop Upgrades
- Open Source a Threat, Microsoft Admits

2. ANNOUNCEMENTS
- Don't Miss Our Two New Security Web Seminars in March!
- Join the HP & Microsoft Network Storage Solutions Road Show

3. CONTACT US
See this section for a list of ways to contact us.

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1.

NEWS AND VIEWS


(contributed by Paul Thurrott, [email protected])

* MICROSOFT PREPS SERVER AND DESKTOP UPGRADES
According to sources that Microsoft briefed last week, the company is using the iWave moniker internally as an umbrella marketing strategy for many of its desktop and server upgrades in 2003. Microsoft iWave desktop products include Microsoft Office 11 (shipping June 2), which includes InfoPath 2003 (code-named XDocs); Project 11 and Visio 11 (both shipping in late July); and SharePoint Team Services (which will ship concurrently with Office 11). On the server side, Microsoft is prepping Exchange Server 2003 (code-named Titanium, which will also ship June 2) and SharePoint Portal Server. The company will also soon announce various marketing and sales promotions for the iWave products.

The iWave product-release orchestration is apparently an attempt to capitalize on the so-called Information Worker, Microsoft's new term for Knowledge Worker, a person who regularly needs to access distributed information in the course of the workday. By tying together Office desktop products with relevant server products, Microsoft hopes to make a compelling case for the integrated functionality of its total solutions. Naturally, these products run best on Windows Server 2003 on the server and Windows XP on the desktop.

Microsoft will complete Office 11 beta 2 as early as this week, and users interested in testing Office 11 will be happy to hear that the company will issue a public preview release within 30 days; a Visio 11 public preview will also be available in early March. Office 11's June 2 release date coincides nicely with Microsoft TechEd 2003, so I expect the company to promote its iWave rollout at that conference.

* OPEN SOURCE A THREAT, MICROSOFT ADMITS
In a regular filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Microsoft warned that open source software (OSS) solutions such as Linux pose a threat to the company's long-term success. Microsoft's public statements about Linux have evolved over the years, moving from dismissive to cooperative, but this filing is the first time the company has admitted the seriousness of the problems it will face if open-source solutions become popular enough to affect sales.

"The popularization of the open source movement continues to pose a significant challenge to the company's business model," Microsoft wrote in the filing, which also notes "recent efforts by proponents of the Open Source model to convince governments worldwide to mandate the use of Open Source software in their purchase and deployment of software products." If OSS continues to gain traction, Microsoft says that it will have to lower prices to compete, an action that will significantly affect the company's revenues and operating margins.

Microsoft enjoys a market share of more than 90 percent for both desktop OSs and office-productivity software, and its server software continues to control 40 to 60 percent of key markets. But the company is concerned that OSS will begin cutting into price-sensitive markets, such as the educational and government markets, leading to broader Linux adoption in businesses and homes. Several Linux vendors are now racing to develop more refined solutions to meet the needs of the wider desktop market.

Microsoft downplayed the significance of the filing, however. "It just seemed like an appropriate place to list \[the open-source threat\], along with other uncertainties," a company spokesperson said. "Microsoft had been publicly acknowledging those concerns for quite a while."

2.

ANNOUNCEMENTS


(brought to you by Windows & .NET Magazine and its partners)

* DON'T MISS OUR TWO NEW SECURITY WEB SEMINARS IN MARCH!
Windows & .NET Magazine has two new Web seminars to help you address your security concerns. There is no fee to attend "Selling the Importance of Security: 5 Ways to Get Your Manager's Attention" and "Building an Ultra Secure Extranet on a Shoe String," but space is limited, so register today!
http://www.winnetmag.com/seminars

* JOIN THE HP & MICROSOFT NETWORK STORAGE SOLUTIONS ROAD SHOW
Now is the time to start thinking of storage as a strategic weapon in your IT arsenal. Come to our 10-city Network Storage Solutions Road Show, and learn how existing and future storage solutions can save your company money--and make your job easier! There is no fee for this event, but space is limited. Register now!
http://www.winnetmag.com/roadshows/nas

3.

CONTACT US


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