Windows Server 2008: It’s the Applications, Stupid
When Windows Vista shipped last year, Microsoft forgot to promote killer applications for the desktop operating system. Fortunately, the Windows Server 2008 team isn’t making the same mistake. In classic Microsoft fashion, the company has lined up big application providers to vow their support for the new operating system.
A quick sampling of worldwide headlines shows BEA Systems (now owned by Oracle), BMC, Cisco, Citrix, F5 Networks, IBM, McAfee, NetApp, Oracle, Sun and dozens of other ISVs all vowing to deliver applications for Windows Server 2008.
Such strong vocal support for Windows Server 2008 is hardly surprising. Microsoft’s server software revenue has grown more than 10 percent in 22 consecutive quarters, according to Bloomberg.com. That growth, in turn, has created a lucrative market for third-party Windows Server applications.
Even open source application providers have joined the party. SugarCRM CEO Jonathan Roberts says a large number of customers deploy his company’s open source CRM system on Windows servers. And Microsoft, not by coincidence, was among the top sponsors of a recent SugarCRM developer and customer conference.
Generally speaking, the buzz on Windows Server 2008 is quite positive across recent news headlines. But let’s be careful here, folks. Anybody else remember all the positive media buzz about Windows Vista when that memory hog launched? Initially, The Wall Street Journal’s highly respected Walt Mossberg said he believed Vista was “the best version of Windows that Microsoft has produced.”
Most of us in high tech have since learned that Vista never did live up to its early hype. Aside from requiring plenty of horsepower, Vista had another glaring weakness: Software partners supported the operating system, but they didn’t exactly line up to write new, compelling applications for the Vista.
So far, Windows Server 2008 doesn’t seem to be suffering from the same fate. But then again, the new server operating system is only one day old. And if third-party applications don’t live up to their hype, Microsoft has SQL Server 2008 waiting in the wings.