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Microsoft: More Apps Certified, Partners Helping with W2K Security

NEW ORLEANS -- Microsoft Corp.’s Windows 2000 application certification is proceeding at a good clip, and third parties are helping to secure the newly released business operating system, a Microsoft official told customers today.

Dave Thompson, vice president of the Windows Server product group at Microsoft (www.microsoft.com), talked about the Windows 2000 logo program and security today during his keynote to launch the Windows 2000 Deployment Conference in New Orleans.

Thompson brought up the application certification to answer criticism that so few applications are available for Windows 2000 that a migration to the operating system would be premature.

“More than 4,000 Windows Ready applications are available today, and more than 4,500 more are being readied,” Thompson said.

With Windows 2000, Microsoft instituted a strict application certification process requiring vendors to make sure their applications install according to set rules, follow new guidelines for .dll files, and meet disabled accessibility requirements.

Windows 2000 Ready means a vendor tested an application internally and supports it for customers running it on Windows 2000. The Windows 2000 Certified logo is reserved for applications that have passed testing at independent labs handling the application testing for Microsoft.

Thompson said 56 applications were certified as of April 21, and an additional 124 applications were in the testing queue.

If the labs can sustain the current rate of application certifications -- 19 certified applications in the last month – Microsoft has a chance of meeting an announced goal of 100 certified apps in June.

As deployments of Windows 2000 increase, security becomes more important, and Thompson disclosed several partnerships and developments in Windows 2000 security.

“We gave license to source code to more than 80 universities, labs and government agencies, and they give us feedback for review,” Thompson said.

The security software vendor Network Associates Inc. (www.nai.com) recently completed a paid evaluation of Microsoft’s IPSec implementation, Thompson said.

Microsoft also developed scripts to help users lock down Windows 2000 in Web server configurations from intelligence the company gathered during the beta testing phase by putting up some test Windows 2000 servers and inviting hackers to attack the site, he said.

“We have aggressively and broadly done things to address the security,” Thompson said.

The comments came in the context of a speech designed to spur enterprise customers into an accelerated rollout of Windows 2000, a goal central to Microsoft’s financial future.

“For the last year we’ve been running Windows 2000 as the distributed infrastructure at Microsoft,” Thompson said. “You don’t have to wait three releases for this product.” -- Scott Bekker

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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