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Windows Cloud OS … And some new Office Live stuff

I’ve got a report coming today in WinInfo about Microsoft’s Windows Cloud OS plans:

Microsoft Confirms 'Windows Cloud' OS

At its Professional Developers Conference (PDC) event later this month, Microsoft will publicly unveil its 'Windows Cloud' Internet-based operating system, the company confirmed. I've been told several times by Microsoft representatives in the recent past that this system would in fact be the focus of PDC, this year.

"We need a new operating system designed for the cloud and we will introduce one in about four weeks," Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said yesterday in London. "We'll even have a name to give you by then. But let's just call it for the purposes of today 'Windows Cloud.' Just like Windows Server looked a lot like Windows but with new properties, new characteristics and new features, so will Windows Cloud look a lot like Windows Server.'"

This platform has been in the works for a long time, and the most obvious public face of Microsoft cloud work right now is the Live Mesh project that was championed by Microsoft CTO Ray Ozzie. A session description for the PDC describes a "Microsoft cloud platform" that provides "scalability and availability" and "service isolation and protection."

In an official statement, Microsoft confirmed the coming platform. "Microsoft is investing heavily in its Software + Services vision, particularly as it relates to the services platform to deliver a set of solutions that address our customer's needs," an official statement reads. "We are working with many of our customers, partners and our broad developer community to understand their needs for extensible, scalable services platforms."

While Microsoft has been slowly and methodically embracing cloud computing for a few years now, this explicit admission that it is working on a Windows OS that runs in the Internet cloud should put an end to any naysaying. "We've gotta build a service that is Windows in the cloud," Ballmer said.

Yes you do, Steve. Yes, you do.

But there’s more. Zack Whittaker of ZDNet reports that Steve Ballmer also discuss some interesting upcoming additions to Office Live as well:

I asked him in the Q&A session about the future of Office Live and what’ll come next.

“Office Live has a few things left it needs to do. Number one, and probably most important, is to make sure that people using Office have greater ability to collaborate with one another. We have some of that today with [Office Live] Workspaces, as well as that we’ve got SharePoint; we can do more and some of those things will be better than the other alternatives.

Number two, is when we do Office Live, it has to be true to Office; you’ll need to be able to have full Office documents and programs and share them.

Number three, we have to make it so that - most people use Office most of the time from a single machine. But if you’re away from your desk, at a cafe, a kiosk or your school library, and you don’t have Office, you’ll want to be able to do something quickly; we have to make sure you can get it easily, stream it down, put it in a browser, something like that there… details coming in a few weeks.

So we have a number of things we’re doing. Exactly what we’ll announce I’m going to wait and let you guys sit it out until October 27th.”

Nice! :)

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