Microsoft Corp is scraping together new beta test programs and licensing for the latest edition of its database and development tools, now delayed until the first half of 2005. The company is planning a previously unscheduled release of beta code to provide additional testing time for both SQL Server Yukon and Visual Studio.NET Whidbey.
Microsoft yesterday announced the betas saying Yukon, now called SQL Server 2005, and Whidbey, now Visual Studio 2005, will ship up to six months behind the company’s previously released schedules. Yukon was due by the end of 2004 while Whidbey was expected during the second half of 2004.
Microsoft said while it is revising its Visual Studio 2005 roadmap, it was unable to say at this time whether the successor suite, codenamed Orcas and due in 2005, would also slip. With a major IDE release now planned for 2005 in Whidbey, a delay to Orcas seems likely.
Delays to SQL Server 2005 and Visual Studio 2005 will impact both ISVs, planning products optimized for new features in both the database and tools, and enterprise customers who are planning product upgrades around the release dates.
To carry customers over, Microsoft said it is considering the re-introduction of an old software-licensing program that allows developers and end-users to use the planned beta code in deployment scenarios. Microsoft first launched this Go Live Licensing program for beta ASP.NET code in June 2001, ahead of the first Visual Studio.NET suite.
Businesses who do use the planned betas in live scenarios are likely to do so at their own risk, though, as Go Live code is provided without support from Microsoft for ASP.NET.
Exact details of Go Live for Visual Studio 2005 are unclear, as Microsoft is still working on details, Ari Bixhorn, Visual Studio lead product manager, told ComputerWire. On SQL Server 2005, those outside the beta program of 100 companies will receive code without support, SQL Server’s director of product marketing Tom Rizzo said.
Microsoft cited feedback from customers and partners who had requested additional testing for this, the third delay to SQL Server 2005 – the database was due originally in summer 2003. Rizzo denied the need for further testing was the result of code changes introduced under the Trusted Computing Initiative, a shifting vision for .NET and the need to fix vulnerabilities associated with the SQL Slammer worm.
Yukon will be rock solid, Rizzo promised.
The decision to postpone SQL Server 2005 has also impacted Visual Studio 2005, because of integration between the two environments, Microsoft said. Microsoft’s Common Language Runtime (CLR) will be embedded in the database engine as Visual Studio 2005 becomes the programming environment for SQL Server 2005.
The second Visual Studio 2005 beta is due by the second half of 2004, with the first beta due during the first half of the year.
This article is based on material originally published by ComputerWire