Dear Windows-Help.NET subscriber,
Microsoft this week showed that you can still bank on it... by delaying Windows 2000. I mean if there's one thing about Microsoft they seem to get "right" all the time, it's getting their products delayed. First it's "expected" that Beta 3 will be available in April (planned was later this month). This will obviously push everything back. Rumors are that Microsoft is "hoping" for an end of year ship date. Well` if you want my opinion, I'd say "don't hold your breath". There are also rumors about some problems Microsoft still seems to have with 64-bit support and with support for new Intel microprocessor technology, but the list is topped by Microsoft's Active Directory services and IntelliMirror technologies. Microsoft is starting to feel the crunch of the more than 30 million lines of code which make up Win2000, considered to be one of the largest software products ever.
All this comes at a bad time for Microsoft, and one wonders why the government is still spending money in the courts, trying to brake-up Microsoft, when they are seemingly doing a pretty good job themselves. Customers are getting fed-up waiting for Win2000, and apparently there are many companies waiting for it, to upgrade their PC's across the board, in many cases skipping Windows 98 (and/or even 95) in the process.
Well, starting next month, these customers get another choice: Compaq is going to team up with Red Hat and offer Linux preloaded on Compaq servers. Compaq is also offering 24 x 7 support for these Linux based servers. Up until now Compaq has only offered Linux on request, so this represents a a major shift in policy for them.
Gateway Inc. is also rumored to have signed a deal with Red Hat, and its servers are expected to ship with Linux by year's end.
These are just the kind of deals Linux needs to get acceptance in the corporate world, and get its stability and scalability known to a larger number of people. There are also moves on the software front, with some vendors starting to ship (beta) versions of their databases for Linux. Lookout Microsoft... the ground is getting hot under NT's feet.
So we all thought that the AOL - Netscape deal (for more information see the Newsletter of 28 November 1998) was big. Well, that $4.2 billion deal just got reduced to another statistic when the (cable based) Internet provider @Home bought Excite for $6.7 billion (in stock). Through this acquisition, @Home becomes a major online service, directly competing with AOL and other major Internet "portals". According to Excite's CEO George Bell, the deal is all about "giving users multimedia, video, speech and audio experiences not available on the Web today".
Later in the week, NBC and CNet also announced a portal for high-speed users called Cyclone, providing video, audio, television, telephony and news services among other things. Cyclone's debut is scheduled for later this quarter.
The "dust" in this segment of the Internet hasn't settled yet. There is more to be expected soon. Potential partners? There's Microsoft's MSN, Lycos, AltaVista, PointCast, GeoCities, The Mining Company, HotBot and Amazon.com. Who will go with whom will have to be seen.
Cookie Monster bug
Netscape has recently been alerted to a bug that affects the Netscape Navigator browser software. The Cookie Monster bug affects all existing versions of Netscape Navigator (2.x through 4.x) on all platforms. Although Netscape has verified this bug, no customer incidents of lost or stolen data have been reported to Netscape. Netscape takes all potential security and privacy issues seriously and is currently working on a fix. This fix will be available in an upcoming maintenance release of Communicator.