Saturday, May 12, 2007

Microsoft Cuts Key Longhorn Virtualization Features

This PC World article titled "Microsoft Cuts Key Longhorn Virtualization Features" is one of many on the web that describe Microsoft's decision to cut some of the key virtulisation features of Longhorn, code named Viridian. And to make matters less good, Microsoft has not said when, or even if, these features will surface again. 

For the official work, check out a blog entry posted on Thursday, 10 May where Mike Neil dropped the bombshell that some of the key features of Viridian are being dropped. And despite dropping cool and core features, there has been no improvement on likely delivery dates - MS is still saying Viridian will hit 6 months ("180 days") after Longhorn is complete. To be fair, MS are saying publicly that Viridian will ship "within 180 days of the release to manufacturing of Windows Server Longhorn."   Thus, it might be release4d earlier but given Microsoft's track record on meeting Windows release deadlines, I'm not holding my breath. Assuming no further slips, we should the public beta in November/December of this year, with RTM some time late sprint/early summer next year (i.e around a  year from  now). Naturally I'd love to see Viridian released earlier.

The three key feature cuts that were announced are:

  • The live migration feature
  • Hot-adding  resources (including storage, networking, memory, processor)
  • Support for  16 processor cores (e.g 4-way, quad proc is maximum to be supported)

The first two of these dropped features are a real shame. The decision to drop support for more than 16 cores may not be such a big deal.


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