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Microsoft Drops .NET Name For Next Windows Server 490

metamatic writes "C|net is reporting that Microsoft is dropping the name "Windows .NET Server" and going back to "Windows Server 200x" (where x is currently expected to be 3). Other products with .NET in the name are also being evaluated for renaming. Analysts are being quoted as saying that slapping .NET on so many Microsoft products has confused people as to what .NET actually means. Or could it be that customers know what it means, but nobody wants to buy it?" Obiwan Kenobi points out a similar article at ENT News
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Microsoft Drops .NET Name For Next Windows Server

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  • Confusion? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by _ph1ux_ ( 216706 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @05:50PM (#5058716)
    I agree with the bit about confusion....

    I was very confused (and still am) to exactly what .NET is - and palladium for that matter. I asked here on slashdot what they were and the major differnces between the two.

    Someone posted a link to an MS page that supposedly explained what they were - but it still was very vague and didnt help much.

    So - anyone out there clear on what .NET is and maybe palladium for that matter who would care to expound on the merits of this wonderful technology?
  • what is .net? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by seeksoft ( 579626 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @05:52PM (#5058744)
    I agree with the confused thing. I have NO idea what .net is. I used the visual studio, but its not vb7. its "VB.NET" wtf? So maybe somebody in this thread can tell me what .NET is?
  • by Henry V .009 ( 518000 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @05:58PM (#5058808) Journal
    Having .NET on everything is actually hurting .NET--no one understands what it is because it is so generic. It also makes it harder to figure out what individual products are.

    I would be highly doubtful that this means that Microsoft is somehow 'backing off' .NET
  • No no no.... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Dark Lord Seth ( 584963 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:09PM (#5058916) Journal

    It will be called "Microsoft Windows ($current_year + 1)" so that it won't LOOK terribly out of date for the next two years.

  • All this proves (Score:2, Insightful)

    by slycer9 ( 264565 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:13PM (#5058954) Journal
    is that M$oft knows the value of the public's perception. Other companies have pulled moves similar to this over the years, with far less fanfare (not to mention the griping and moaning).
    It doesn't matter what it's called people, all that matters is what it does.
    Mandrake, Suse, Slack...need I say more? Same thing (essentially) different name. .Net, WinSrv200X...doesn't matter, (assuming as based on the article) since all of the core is remaining the same.
    Name change only. As far as no one in the general public 'getting' what .Net was intended for...well, it wasn't intended for the GP now, was it?
  • Rule #1 when creating technical terms is
    "Don't reuse a term that is already in use in a similar domain."

    This is pretty much exactly what Microsoft did. Putting a "." before a three letter word has become synonymous with meaning the webpage that displays the product. It is likely that some managers heard of visual studio .net and immediately checked "" to find out what the name of the latest version of visual studio was.

    Plus, "net" is short for internet. That's nuts. We live in a world where a great many people don't know the difference between a webbrowser and an operating system. There's no way these people would be able to distinguish an internet api called "internet" from the internet.

    Its probably because they weren't really getting their corporate message across to consumers. I hear that the new API that they're building into all of their products is to be called "Owns You!"
  • Re:Confusion? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Arethan ( 223197 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:21PM (#5059004) Journal
    Everyone is complaining that Palladium will kill open source on Win32. I can't help but agree, but there is another angle to this as well. What happens to the small programming shops? I can think of plenty of times when one of my previously employing companies wrote small (sometimes throwaway) apps for clients. Sometimes it was for data massaging, sometimes it was a quick front end to something normally complicated.

    The cold fact is that I can't see small businesses providing custom software solutions for clients surviving if Palladium is released. The cost to have throw away apps signed (not to mention the time delay involved) will utterly destroy them.

    Unless of course the application signing is much simpler than that. Simply trusting a company as a whole, rather than a particular application. Trusting an entire company will allow small businesses to sign their own code. Of course, that also means that the DRM is pointless because a single hacked network will result in signed viruses.

    If MS goes ahead with Palladium, I'll be keeping my eye out for the first virus to fool the OS into rejecting every app, regardless of signature. Perfect DOS attack. Can't do anything but reinstall from the installation media, if your DRM bios will let you that is...
  • by DaytonCIM ( 100144 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:21PM (#5059005) Homepage Journal
    Good point. Going one step farther... I believe that Microsoft never got behind .NET. Sure, there was a mild push last year, but then *poof* no more push.

    They had really pretty sections in most book stores for the VAST number of .NET books, but really there was never a "Microsoft type" marketing push. Maybe because there wasn't a "product" to push? .NET RIP 2003
  • by Ask-A-Nerd ( 590961 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:28PM (#5059050)
    Your missing the whole point guys. They are trying desperately now to keep the name Windows. Why? Because of thier legal wrangling attempts to keep anyone else from using anything close like "Lindows". Not to mention .NET is another common used word that they would then be challenged on... why have two fights...just keep one. If they weren't using Windows anymore.. a judge might ask what the big deal was with someone else using something close. Get it?
  • by Daniel Phillips ( 238627 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:35PM (#5059103)
    Having .NET on everything is actually hurting .NET--no one understands what it is because it is so generic. It also makes it harder to figure out what individual products are.

    Right you are. So .NET goes back to being just a Java imitation, which is nice and clear and easy to understand.
  • by HiredMan ( 5546 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:37PM (#5059111) Journal
    when they changed Windows NT 5.0 to Windows 2000 - hoping to ditch all the bad news

    Actually I think this was also the first real push made by M$ to go to leased software.

    Naming your Word Processor or Office Suite after the year makes no sense at all unless you plan to release a new one every year like they do cars. They get rid of the Y.X naming - which actually provides information to the consumer if you use it correctly - and start getting people used to naming like "Word 2000".
    That way it seems more natural when you pay for Word 2003 and then pay again for Word 2004 then next...
    Cause it better you know... the numbers bigger...


  • Re:Confusion? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by NetFu ( 155538 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:55PM (#5059238) Homepage Journal
    What was the app? I've been working with .NET development for about 6 months and everything I've used on every hardware from 400MHz Celeron's to 3GHz P4's has run very, very fast. And IMO, C# is incredibly easy to program simple stuff in -- reminds me of when I started programming on that Commodore PET in 1979-1980 (hmm, from PET to .NET? cool...)

    Also, what language was it in? ".NET" could be practically any language supported in Windows -- C, C++, C#, Java, Visual Basic, among others. Also, you know there's a separate .NET Embedded, right? Probably more tuned for a phone, I would think (not to mention that any program developed for a phone would have to be different in some way from the desktop version -- not a straight port).

    Anyway, I'd love to take a look at any .NET app that ran slowly -- it'd be a first for me to see that...
  • Re:Confusion? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by archen ( 447353 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @06:55PM (#5059242)
    Those were my thoughts as well until I realized that microsoft is going to have major problems for one reason: scripting. Are they just going to say "No Scripting" on windows? I really don't see any practical way to ever "trust" a script of any sort. So I would imagine Microsoft will be putting "untrusted" applications in some sort of sandbox (and probably a disadvantage as some sort of penalty).

    Small time apps will always be there no matter what MS wants. What Microsoft will eventually find is that their lack of open / free development tools is going to be a continual drag on windows development. I couldn't even begin to name all the development tools / languages you can use on Linux. On windows there is only a handfull and most if it is controlled by MS and is far from cheap. All this "trusted computing" stuff is just going to make Linux development more appealing.
  • NT (Score:2, Insightful)

    by mrbrown1602 ( 536940 ) <> on Friday January 10, 2003 @07:03PM (#5059310) Journal
    Why can't we just go back to the old naming method and call it "Windows NT Server" ? Life was so much easier back then!
  • Re:Confusion? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by JohnFluxx ( 413620 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @07:04PM (#5059327)
    Also note that even if the OS allows unsigned apps etc, your unsigned app sure won't be allowed access to the data that you want to manipulate, since that will probably be in some signed database program.
  • by AKnightCowboy ( 608632 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @07:05PM (#5059331)
    Actually, I think it's more like what they did when they changed Windows NT 5.0 to Windows 2000 - hoping to ditch all the bad news (mainly delays in getting to a working product) associated with the former name.

    Hey, I have an idea. Now, this is going to sound kind of crazy and I know I'm a little ahead of my time, but what if we were to simplify the name and give it a meaningful version number? We could call the next released version Windows 7.0. Microsoft Windows 7.0. It could be a HUGE media frenzy! "No XP, no 2000, no .NET.. just 7.0. The added benefit is that when a new upgrade comes out we can name it Windows 7.1 and people can tell that it is a NEWER and more advanced version!"

  • by freeweed ( 309734 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @07:52PM (#5059600)
    I thought that's what C# was all about - cloning Java.
  • Re:.NET slapping. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Malcontent ( 40834 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @08:08PM (#5059699)
    "It is similar to Java, the big difference being that many many languages could all be compiled into the same bytecode."

    Most languages can compile to jave bytecode.

    "What was spiffy was you could very easily use different languages for different parts of your program. Business logic in C, interface in VB, etc."

    What's the big deal with this. People write activex components in C and use them VB every day. Since when did this become some new fangled feature.

    And finally how come an ignorant post like this gets modded up to 4?
  • Re:Confusion? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mrkurt ( 613936 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @08:15PM (#5059751) Journal

    If .net is really about trying to solve the problem of remote object invocation, why do it in pretty much the same manner that Java does it-- with a language runtime that, as it turns out, will run only on Windows, which slaps another layer on top of COM and essentially abandons DCOM? Why not instead just extend Visual Studio 6 COM/DCOM and make it easier to use XML, SOAP, and other web services protocols to do remote method invocations? As it is, it seems like .net imposes a performance penalty on Windows machines-- applications are slow.

    The only answer I can come up with is that .net is about locking developers, and therefore enterprises, into Windows. I conclude that .net is about a specific technology, and other object technologies (RPC, CORBA, SOAP) are about standards. In a perfect world, standards win every time, but MS will always see its best interest in forking away from standards to uphold its market share. I have been a Visual Basic developer up to this point, and I appreciate having COM as an object model and bus. I have been giving other object platforms a serious look, though, as well as the open source tools associated with them, to see if it makes any sense to adopt one or the other.

  • by MeanMF ( 631837 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @08:28PM (#5059829) Homepage
    Pardon the ignorance, but what exactly is/are the differences between C# and C++ ? Is C# meant to replace C++?

    Just think of it as MSJava without the trademark infringement. C# is actually more of a threat to replace VB than C++, since C# and VB are both run completely inside the .NET runtime and have just about the same features. C++ is still the language of choice for lower-level programming such as system utilities and device drivers. C++ offers a lot more flexibility to the programmer at the expense of additional complexity.
  • Puzzled. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by miguel ( 7116 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @08:52PM (#5059939) Homepage
    I am puzzled that a project rename would generate 298 posts in Slashdot. I guess everyone had an opinion.
  • Re:Confusion? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by shyster ( 245228 ) <> on Friday January 10, 2003 @09:09PM (#5060031) Homepage
    Mod the parent up. He's the first one with half a clue on what .NET is, rather than what MS is positioning on what .NET can do.

    Don't forget, however, that the .NET Framework also means that (theoretically, at least...and in reality for the most part) you can write in C#.NET, VB.NET, etc. and still have access to the same you can keep the language you're most familiar with.

    Also, .NET allows multiple versions of shared libraries, ending "DLL Hell" (which really hasn't been a problem for around 5 years, but whatever). It's also allows for granular and inheritable permissions on program's actions (Program X is allowed to access the network, therefore Component Y called by Program X is allowed to access the network)...though it requires a good development team that knows what they're doing and does it properly (so it probably won't work out too well).

    SOAP, XML, and Web Services are really just applications and languages of .NET...and a vision of MS's future program services (where your program can call on another program located on your server, or halfway around the world, to process data and return it...sort of like a global #include)...but it's not really living up to the hype yet.

    If you're not a developer or system admin, .NET means very little to you. If you're a developer, you probably should look into it, unless you're into Java. System Admins can probably wait a year or so before playing with Windows 2003 Server and some actual .NET applications.

  • by TekPolitik ( 147802 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @10:38PM (#5060418) Journal

    They did this with ActiveX too. For a while, everybody at MS said their project was part of the ActiveX initiative. Then they scaled back the use of the term

    This sort of thing is not uncommon in software companies - they have a new project that becomes flavour of the month, and everybod will try to reclassify their project to fit within the new project. If the new project has attributes A, B and C, a project with attributes C, D and E will claim to be part of the trendy project because of the overlap at C, when the real value of the trendy project is the combination of A, B and C.

    The other thing that happens with new projects at software companies is that the entire sales force will want to be selling the new project and ignoring everything else. My theory here is that the salespeople have such tiny brains they can't deal with more than one project at once. The other projects languish for a time, which creates another incentive for them to reclassify themselves into the trendy project's area. This can be a real problem for the company because their staple lines stop selling as much since the salespeople aren't pushing them, and the new trendy thing is either not ready or hasn't built enough following to take up the slack.

  • Re:Confusion? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tftp ( 111690 ) on Friday January 10, 2003 @11:58PM (#5060709) Homepage
    foremen could fire up their PocketPC handhelds and see what their teams were working on that day.

    I worked with architects and construction people, this should be close to shipbuilding. I *guarantee* that no foreman would even *think* of getting any usable info from a Palm Pilot. A foreman has heaps of A0 drawings (if you don't know what A0 size is, check it out), and most of those drawings are already in his head.

    A foreman does not *need* a computer. It is too slow, and has too low a resolution. Each drawing has tens of thousands pixels across, and we used all of those pixels - a building is long, and each room and each wall have their dimensions, and these dimensions must be readable.

    Also, a foreman does not need to check his Palm Pilot to know what his team is doing. That is because he is right there, with his team, running from one work site to another, checking the work and giving instructions all the time. That's what his job is about - not "checking his Palm Pilot".

    Frequently a foreman needs to talk to an engineer who oversees the construction. Then he reaches for his walkie-talkie, or walks to the office, usually with drawings in hand. Then he sits with the architect, who then draws sketches for him to explain this corner, or that insulation layer. A computer here is mostly useless, since pen and drafting paper are much faster. Pen is also easier to use, especially if a foreman does not have a university education.

    Computers are widely used as drafting tools, and they do this job reasonably well. But computer manipulation of drawings is not something that even an architect is good with. Most architects prefer pen and paper, and they all draw very well. Maintenance of the drawings is something that only draftsmen do.

Would you people stop playing these stupid games?!?!?!!!!