Paul Thurrott’s SuperSite for Windows has a review of Longhorn, the next big Windows release after XP. The review goes into a lot of depth and explains many of the new technologies that are involved.
Having read the article, I can say that some areas are quite impressive. The new display system, for example, looks very good, with improved transparency, smoothed edges to application windows and such like, but without the performance hit that such features require at the moment.
However, I am a little concerned about 2 things:
- Reliance on NTFS. Although FAT and FAT32 will still be supported, Longhorn will need to recide on an NTFS drive. Although NTFS is a superior file system, FAT is more open. Indeed, I use FAT on my hard disk because I can access my files in either Windows or Linux.
- The hardware specification. A 64MB 3D-accelerated graphics card capable of 32 bit colour and a minimum of 1024×768 resolution is required, but 128MB is recommended. To put the into context, the total memory in my laptop, running XP Home, is 128MB – that’s RAM and graphics memory combined.
But then Longhorn isn’t due out for 2 years yet – 2005 is the current estimate for release but delays are inevitable. By then, I imagine most computers will be capable of running it.
There was no word of Microsoft’s Trusted Computing Initiative and the concept formally known as Palladium, but it will be interesting to see if that is included. There was also no mention of a new version of Internet Explorer, which I would like to see released, preferably with fixes for some of the rendering bugs that I come across now and again. Still, the article is worth a read and it does offer screen shots.