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Microsoft Hogs the Spotlight

CHICAGO -- Storage Decisions 2003 -- Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) definitely stole the show here this week. The computer software giants grandstand launch of its Windows Storage Server 2003 was big enough to overshadow every other event -- and most vendors seemed to accept this as their fate, with many releasing only news related to the Microsoft splash (see Microsoft Raises NAS Roof and Vendors Jump to Back Microsoft NAS).

Of the 14 press releases listed on the Storage Decisions Website on Thursday, half were related to the Microsoft launch. And while vendors were pledging their oaths of Redmond allegiance, analysts at the show predicted that the Windows Storage Server will change the competitive face of NAS going forward.

“This is going to be the underlying NAS architecture,” says Enterprise Storage Group Inc. senior analyst Steve Duplessie. “The value for anybody going forward’s going to be: What are you going to wrap around it?” [Ed. note: And how many times I've been asked that question...]

Microsoft wasn’t going to risk being upstaged. The company sponsored a luxury cruise around Lake Michigan, where guests were greeted by characters including Charlie Chaplin, Elvis, and Lucille Ball [ed. note: all of whom were celebrity NAS administrators in their day, of course], and even had chocolate Windows Storage Server statuettes made for the occasion.

Figure 1:

Lucy and Elvis welcome guests aboard the Microsoft cruise

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