Microsoft is very concerned about the heavy and very favorable press Novell's
NetWare 5.0 has been getting since its release in September. The problem is
this: most of Windows NT's market gains have been at the expense of NetWare.
If Novell can stop the bleeding with it's widely praised NetWare 5.0, it would
seriously stall the Windows NT revenue stream.
Most experts doubt NT 5.0, especially NT 5.0 Advanced Server, the version actually competing with NetWare, can be out even by the end of 1999. A rushed out, incomplete and/or unstable release of NT 5.0 could be disastrous and even end Microsoft's enterprise ambitions. So what is going on? Microsoft is telling its distribution partners to gear up for a first quarter 1999 release. Are they serious, or is this just a desperate stalling effort? Are they going to release NT Workstation separate from NT Server?
Competitors and Microsoft detractors are seriously hoping NT Server will be released before it's ready - and they can't see it being ready any time soon. Since the Beta-2 release a few weeks ago, magazine reviewers have praised it shamelessly, but real beta testers say it is so unstable, and so many of the promised features are still so far from complete, they can't imagine a 1st quarter release.
Gartner Group, the leading research firm serving IS management at the country's top corporations, has strongly recommended their clients not attempt to implement NT 5.0 until at least the end of year 2000. This would have serious repercussions for Microsoft's revenue stream.
©:Andrew Grygus - Automation Access
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