Thursday, September 02, 2004

Microsoft Longhorn cutbacks threaten Project Green

A few days ago, I wrote about Microsoft's decision to scale back the features of its next generation operating system, Longhorn. Now we are seeing the far-reaching consequences of that decision.

Most importantly, for readers of the Spectator, there are serious implications for Project Green, which is Microsoft's program to merge the code base for its four ERP systems: Great Plains, Axapta, Navision, and Solomon. Project Green was, most recently, scheduled for release in 2008, following delivery of Longhorn in 2007. But with the feature set of Longhorn being cut, Project Green's delivery schedule is now uncertain.

The dependencies between Longhorn and Project Green are complicated. Project Green was to be built upon a new set of developer tools and software classes called the Microsoft Business Framework (MBF). MBF, in turn, depends in part on Microsoft's new WinFS file system, which Microsoft just decided to cut from Longhorn.

With WinFS being deferred until some unspecified date after Longhorn, it is uncertain when MBF will be delivered. I suppose it's possible that MBF could be released using elements of existing Microsoft technology, which means that MBF could be released ahead of Longhorn. That might allow Microsoft to release Project Green earlier. It depends on whether delivery of MBF was on the critical path for Project Green prior to Microsoft's decision--I don't know, but I doubt it.

For more details of the impact of Longhorn cutbacks, read Mary Jo Foley's summary.

Related posts
Microsoft shortens Longhorn
Microsoft slowing down Project Green
Microsoft: selling enterprise software is a "humbling experience"
Yet another update on Project Green
Microsoft Project Green details emerging
Feedback regarding Microsoft's Project Green
Is Microsoft upstaging Great Plains, Solomon, Navision, and Axapta with "Project Green"?

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