Microsoft Announces High-Level Reorganization

In a series of moves perhaps precipitated by the company's noted lack of success in an online strategy, Microsoft late last week announced several high-level changes in its management structure. These changes also affect Microsoft's consumer division and its mobile division, which sees continued slow adoption of Windows Mobile in smart phones.

Specifically, the company announced that the leaders of its online services, mobility and Windows consumer product marketing units were being replaced. Steve Berkowitz, senior vice president of Microsoft's online services group, will step down now and leave the company in August. He'll be replaced by Bill Veghte.

Elsewhere, Satya Nadella was promoted to senior vice president of the software vendor's search, portals and advertising group. And Andy Lees will be taking over for Pieter Knook to become the senior vice president of Microsoft's mobile communications business, which includes the Windows Mobile business. Several other changes were also announced.

Do you think Microsoft needs a leadership change in these organizations, or a new strategy entirely? Shoot your thoughts to pvarhol@redmondmag.com.

SCO Gets Offer of New Funding
In the seemingly never-ending saga of The SCO Group, Stephen Norris & Co. Capital Partners (SNCP) and partners in the Middle East have offered to provide the company with $100 million of new financing in order to save it from bankruptcy. Check out the press release here (PDF).

The bankruptcy, you may remember, was due to an upcoming summary judgment against SCO ruling that Novell, in fact, still owns the copyright to Unix.

There are two conditions to this offer. First is that SCO CEO Darl McBride resign immediately once the deal is complete; and second, that SCO continue to pursue its copyright lawsuits against IBM, Novell, AutoZone (a Linux user) and others. According to the press release, SCO's board of directors has determined that this deal is in the best long-term interest of its shareholders.

Given the summary judgment, it's difficult to understand the motive behind the proposed investment, unless the investors believe that SCO will ultimately prevail if it has enough cash to fund the appeals process. In that case, that $100 million investment could be worth billions. Is it worth the risk? What's your take on this unexpected development? Let me know at pvarhol@redmondmag.com.

Vista Updates Cause Problems
Some Vista users are reporting that some prerequisite updates for Windows Vista SP1 are causing system instabilities, including infinite reboots. Without a Vista install DVD, there doesn't seem to be any way of stopping the reboots.

Of course, it's not always possible to get an install DVD with your new computer -- and even if it is, many computer manufacturers charge extra for it. If you haven't started installing these updates yet, you may want to delay until Microsoft gets it straightened out.

Have you seen this problem? Tell me how you solved it at pvarhol@redmondmag.com.

About the Author

Peter Varhol is the executive editor, reviews of Redmond magazine and has more than 20 years of experience as a software developer, software product manager and technology writer. He has graduate degrees in computer science and mathematics, and has taught both subjects at the university level.

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