64-bit Windows is almost here (and it’s in CS2006 too)

In the last day, I installed Release Candidate 2 of 64-bit Windows at home (running XP Professional x64). 64-bit Windows will be released for the Intel Itanium (IA64) and AMD64/Intel EMT64 (x64) standards very soon. It has been an interesting experience. Its definitely faster, but the driver support is expectedly not to the same level as 32-bit Windows XP/2003. But, testing it has been a very stable and satisfying experience and its definitely good enough for prime time if you have the driver support needed. (Being a pretty high-end home-user, it definitely got a thorough workout/torture test in my case.)

For Commerce Server customers, what does this mean? I envision two principal benefits when using CS2006 (which will be native x64) on 64-bit Windows Server 2003. First, 64-bit SQL will definitely provide an added performance boost from a raw horsepower – as the database ultimately becomes the usual bottleneck in most e-commerce deployments. But, the second and more interesting potential benefit is RAM. 32-bit systems have to utilize paging to address more than 4GB of memory. 64-bit hardware and Windows obviously do not have this problem.

So, it will open up a whole new realm for high-end hosting – since now hosting many memory intensive sites on a single piece of hardware (or else multiple 32-bit virtual machines on one 64-bit system running Virtual Server) can become a reality. I feel the sudden urge to run out and buy a few more GB of RAM coming on…

Check Out the BPI Customer Response Team Blog

The BPI Customer Response Team, which acts as the direct liaison between the engineering groups in the Business Process and Integration Division (comprising Commerce Server, BizTalk Server, Host Integration Server, and BizTalk Adapters), is now blogging on MSDN. They are using this WebLog as a means for communicating key notifications and interesting findings to the division’s entire customer-base.

Check out their WebLog today at http://blogs.msdn.com/BPIDCustomerResponseTeam/ for lots of salient information and advisories on all BPI-related products and technologies.

I’m Back and an Update: CS2006 & Releases Beyond

Greetings all! I apologize for being offline for the last month or so, but we have been very busy wrapping up CS2006 planning and starting on post-CS2006 planning efforts. So, the last month has been a mad scramble to get all of the functional design wrapped up on CS2006 – focusing mostly on IT pro and developer tools. We are deliberately scoping these last to ensure that they encapsulate the requirements properly of all the other core functional features.

Beyond that, we have been beginning to ramp up on post-CS2006 planning. I have been out of the office working with our Partner Advisory Councils to solicit input on post-CS2006 as well as meeting with industry analysts on the East Coast to both brief them on our current offerings as well as solicit futures input. I can’t share much just yet – but I can say that our next major release will likely be aligned to and shipping in the same general timeframe as the next version of the Microsoft Portal (SharePoint/Content Management Server) platform.

If you have any feature requests, please send them in now! I’d encourage the use of the Comment feature on this WebLog to ensure that content does not get duplicated – plus I don’t have anything to hide! I look forward to hearing your thoughts. So, with that thought – I’ll adjourn and be back very soon with more news and details. Be seeing you.