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64-Bit Advanced Server Limited Edition 1.2 on Tap

Microsoft Corp. said this week it would refresh its Windows Advanced Server, Limited Edition, with a new 1.2 version to support the Itanium 2 release.

The original Windows Advanced Server, Limited Edition, came out last year to support Itanium, Intel Corp.'s first-generation 64-bit processor. Intel is expected to release the second-generation Itanium, formerly known by its codename "McKinley" and now called Itanium 2, later this year.

The show of support follows a recent announcement by Intel competitor AMD that Microsoft would support AMD's unreleased 64-bit Opteron processors in Windows.

The 64-bit Windows Advanced Server, Limited Edition, operating systems are built on Windows .NET Server pre-release code.

Re-releasing the Limited Edition code gives Microsoft an opportunity to include a year's worth of improvements to the Windows .NET Server pre-release code since the first Limited Edition shipped. The announcement underscores the expected delays in Windows .NET Server. Had the operating system's planned general availability not been delayed into early 2003, Microsoft would have been ready to support Itanium 2 with a general release of the Windows server operating system.

Industry analysts expect customer demand to be much higher for the Itanium 2 than for the first Itanium.

Customers must buy the limited edition operating system through hardware OEMs, the same way as they buy Windows 2000 Datacenter Server.

Licensed owners of Windows Advanced Server, Limited Edition, are eligible for a free upgrade to the 64-bit edition of Windows .NET Enterprise Server, when that ships.

About the Author

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

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