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Datacenter Server Limited Edition Released

Although Microsoft has pushed back the schedule for Windows .NET Server, the company is going ahead with the release of a limited edition of Windows Datacenter Server based on Windows .NET Server beta code.

Microsoft on Monday released Windows Datacenter Server Limited Edition, a fully supported upgrade to Windows 2000 Datacenter Server. Customers who buy the limited edition of Datacenter Server will be eligible for a free upgrade to Windows .NET Datacenter Server when that ships.

Datacenter Server is Microsoft's most scalable and highly available operating system, with support for up to 32 processors, 64 GB of RAM and four-node failover clustering.

Last week, Microsoft disclosed that shipment of the Windows .NET Server family, which includes Windows .NET Datacenter Server, would be delayed from the first half of 2002 to the second half. A major reason for the delay was Microsoft's Trustworthy Computing initiative, announced in January, that called for a code review of all products in development.

Al Gillen, an analyst with IDC, notes that target customers for Microsoft's Datacenter product are among the most conservative in IT and are unlikely to be running Datacenter systems in vulnerable places.

"You've got to look at the scale of the systems. People don't deploy these systems in a random, ad-hoc fashion. I would think that of all the [Windows] systems out there, the most buttoned-down, secure ones are going to be Datacenter systems," says Gillen, adding that most Datacenter servers are probably internally facing.

The Limited Edition of Datacenter Server addresses some memory lock and processor-to-processor communication problems that capped the scalability of Windows 2000 Datacenter Server.

Microsoft originally disclosed its plans to release a Windows Datacenter Server Limited Edition about six months ago back in September. At the time, Unisys Corp. used a pre-release version of Windows Datacenter Server Limited Edition to put a Microsoft-based server in the Top 10 of the Transaction Processing Performance Council's OLTP benchmark for non-clustered systems.

About the Author

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

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