Microsoft is juggling its plans for Longhorn again. Redmond would like to have the new operating system in PCs by the end of 2006, but to do that, they've had to cut the new database-drive WinFS file system from the OS. WinFS will apparently be available in beta when Longhorn is released, but a finalized version isn't expected until 2007.
Just because Longhorn isn't coming until the end of 2006 doesn't mean that Windows XP will go without further updates, though. Microsoft will apparently release Avalon, Longhorn's new "graphics presentation engine," and Indigo, a new web services and communication architecture, for Windows XP. Microsoft hopes that releasing Avalon and Indigo for XP will give the two technologies a broad user base, encouraging developers to take advantage of the new tech.
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