Longhorn Server, the next version of the Windows Server operating system, will ship in the second half of 2007, Microsoft disclosed at its Management Summit on Tuesday. Microsoft also introduced a new scripting language for controlling Windows applications, and said some of Windows Vista's security features will require additional Microsoft products.
Microsoft also said the Distributed Management Task Force, an industry standards body, has ratified Microsoft's Web Services for Management spec as a preliminary standard.
During a speech at the conference in San Diego, Microsoft senior VP of servers and tools Bob Muglia demonstrated features of the upcoming Windows Vista operating system he said could lower administrative costs for IT departments, including rolling out, securing, and monitoring the performance of PC networks. "Vista will be, without a shadow of doubt, the most secure version of Windows we've ever released," Muglia said.
Microsoft is designing new versions of its Operations Manager and System Management Center products for distributing Vista to PCs, Muglia added. The desktop operating system is scheduled to ship early next year.
To take advantage of some of the management features in Vista, however, IT departments will need to purchase additional Microsoft products. Vista's Network Access Protection capability, which lets companies quarantine laptops that have been off the corporate network until they can be updated with security patches, will require System Management Server and the upcoming Longhorn Server. Muglia said Longhorn Server will arrive in the second half of next year, the first time Microsoft has narrowed down a release date for that product.