SF Gate: Whither Windows 2000? Industry turns a skeptical eye to new Windows OS

[ Thanks to George
for this link. ]

“In September, the marketing boys in Redmond pushed to change
the name of the new product from Windows NT 5.0 to Windows 2000, in
anticipation of a unified Windows platform. But by then, to the
engineers the writing was already on the wall: they weren’t going
to make it….”

“But why did they give up on their more ambitious goals? Windows
NT 4.0 had held up Microsoft’s enterprise strategy successfully for
four years — what would another six months matter? Or even another
year? But then, if you were the world’s leading software
vendor, and a rival operating system — one that was readily
available and charged no licensing fees — appeared out of nowhere
to challenge your flagship product, that might have a way of
lighting a match under your ass.

“For Microsoft, though they don’t like to admit it, that
challenger is Linux. While analysts estimate Windows NT owns about
a 32 percent share of the server market, Linux has rocketed into
second place in recent months, capturing about 24 percent.”

“Its growth is incredible, especially compared to more venerable
Unix-based OS offerings from companies like Sun Microsystems,
Silicon Graphics and IBM, each of which holds a loyal, but more
modest market share. And this is without any marketing campaign to
speak of, very little bundling with PC systems and certainly no
activities that would attract the attention of the Department of

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