Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

WinFS to be available in WinXP

Hemos posted more than 9 years ago | from the by-bits-and-dribbles dept.

Microsoft 428

ScooterMcGoo writes "According to a Microsoft Watch blog, WinFS is being back ported for Windows XP. From TFA: WinFS isn't dead, Tom Rizzo, Microsoft's director of product management for SQL Server, recently told Microsoft Watch. In fact, Microsoft is planning to provide an update on the technology at this year's Professional Developers Conference (PDC) in September, he said. Rizzo said that Microsoft is busily back-porting the WinFS file-system technology to Windows XP. It's unclear if Microsoft also is porting WinFS to Windows Server 2003, but such a move would be likely, given that the Redmond software vendor is doing so with Avalon and Indigo."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

woohoo (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866734)

Pist fr0st?

Re:woohoo (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11867114)


I like Windows XP Home Edition.

It is the most powerful operating-system for Pee Cees. It looks not as gay as Mac OS X by Steve B10 Jobs and has 1,0000,0000 times more softwares that the Linus-operating-system.

Plus, it comes with every Pee Cee for free. People who have grown acusstomt to paying RatHat 699 $$$ or more can hardly beleive this when I consult them with my proffesional Internet- and Network-Service-Center-Bureau.

Wehn I have a new customer, I take him to the back-room to show him the "alternative" to XP Home, which is Suse Linux 9.0.
I have set-up an old Pentium 133Hz and a small monochrome monitor to show teh customer what Linux looks and feels like.

I have it set-up so it runs a fullscreen-Flash-splash-screen on the KDE3.3beta-desktop. It takes 13 min until the mouse cursor responds.

The customer will them make a sound like: "BAH!"

Then I tell them: "See, this is how it is if we let the communists make software."
Then we have a good laugh, wich is psycologicallish valuable for the customer-relatively.

I always tell them:
"Windows XP Home Edition is all you can do to embiggen the producationality of your human resourcers and empower to leverage the outcome-bottomlime of your stickholder ... plus even more!"

My customers usually are like: "OMG!"

You should really try it one day; it has a very nice light-reddish color theme to hit your tastes.

Thank you!

Rushed? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866739)

One hopes that this has not been rushed out?

Instead one fervently hopes that XP etc are simply to be used as testing OS'.

And I care why? (0, Troll)

bullseye2 (54643) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866747)

Why is this so important?

Re:And I care why? (3, Insightful)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866794)

Because now no other OS but Windows will be able to read the filesystem. Just another impediment to the adoption and inter-operability of Windows and Linux.

They STILL haven't figured out how to write to NTFS, they will never even figure out how to read now.

Re:And I care why? (5, Insightful)

ziggythehamster (824648) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866960)

WinFS is not actually a filesystem. It's basically NTFS+ (compare to HFS+). If a computer that only understands NTFS reads the disk, it'll look like an NTFS disk. If WinFS is enabled, the indexes become avaliable. Basically, it's the Indexing Service on steriods. Or, at least, that's how I'm understanding it. Correct me if I'm wrong.

And if I am right, this will be one feature I'm turning off. The Indexing Service already pisses me off.

Re:And I care why? (5, Informative)

evn (686927) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867010)

Despite the unforutnate name, WinFS is a service that runs above the filesystem. The data is still stored on a plain old NTFS partition(s).

For traditional file-based data, such as text documents, audio tracks, and video clips, WinFS is the new Windows file system. Typically, you will store the main data of a file, the file stream, as a file on an NTFS volume. However, whenever you call an API that changes or adds items with NTFS file stream parts, WinFS extracts the metadata from the stream and adds the metadata to the WinFS store.

source: Microsoft's WinFS developer page [microsoft.com]

The data is still just as (in)accessible as it's always been. The meta data is locked away in the WinFS store but we haven't been using that all this time so it's not like we're going to be any worse off.

as for writting NTFS, I suggest you take a look at captive NTFS [jankratochvil.net] which lets you read and write your NTFS partitions in Linux with the same confidence that you do in Windows.

Re:And I care why? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11867048)

Despite the name, WinFS is not a new file system, it's a Windows service that provides a new organisational scheme for accessing data, gathers and stores information about files, etc. The file system itself will still be NTFS.

The main problem with NTFS isn't figuring it out, it's finding someone who wants to finish re-implementing a complex Microsoft file system for free. Moreover, if Linux (and other free operating systems) could fully support NTFS, including appropriate use of NT SIDs/ACLs, it would make a fine base file system. That might potentially give it the kind of universal acceptance FAT (a very simple file system) once had, which is something a good many Linux supporters would rather avoid.

Re:And I care why? - MS MArket share, thats why (5, Interesting)

CdBee (742846) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866815)

It's important to Microsoft as a way of preventing Google Desktop Search and Copernic from gaining mindshare and installed base before they introduce their final version in Longhorn

Incidentally, Copernic 1.5 beta now supports Mozilla Thunderbirds email and contacts and Firefox history and bookmarks - and does it well. This is a double threat to Microsoft, as their vision sees WinFS as a factor which ties people to Outlook and IE6/7

Re:And I care why? (2, Interesting)

randomErr (172078) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866859)

It would the first major file system upgrade since including FAT32 in Win95C.

They can also use WinXP people to do unpaid beta testing of thier file system, before they include support on a server platform such as Win2003.

Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11867121)

It would the first major file system upgrade since including FAT32 in Win95C.

Sooo... what's up with WinXP essentially forcing the use of this NTFS thingy, then?

Re:And I care why? (3, Funny)

flumps (240328) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866911)

It stores meta data along with all your files, so ... you have to spend more money on a bigger hard drive! Yay!

what douchebag modded this a troll? (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866989)

Why is this so important?

Why would this be a troll? It's a really important question.

Aha, that explains it ... (5, Funny)

ggvaidya (747058) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866749)

I thought the Bill-Gates-as-borg icon had a slightly wider smile today ...

Sure... (5, Informative)

Quasar1999 (520073) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866750)

I'll believe it when I see it... my sources inside MS (and no, I ain't giving any proof, so believe me or not, I don't give a shit), say that there are very hard deadlines for Longhorn, with features being left out if they don't meet certain benchmarks, etc... so to hear that they are now taking something, and wasting resources back porting it? Especially when they first said it would be dropped from longhorn? I call Bull..

Re:Sure... (5, Insightful)

maeka (518272) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866862)

I'll believe it when I see it... my sources inside MS (and no, I ain't giving any proof, so believe me or not, I don't give a shit), say that there are very hard deadlines for Longhorn, with features being left out if they don't meet certain benchmarks, etc... so to hear that they are now taking something, and wasting resources back porting it?


As the article states: "Microsoft decided to back-port both Avalon and Indigo to older versions of Windows -- Windows XP and Windows Server 2003 -- in order to maintain backward compatibility and help seed the application-development market, officials said. "
If Microsoft wants to make WinFS a fundamental part of their strategy, they must back port it. Forcing developers to upgrade before they can develop is foolhardy.

Re:Sure... (5, Funny)

wolfgang_spangler (40539) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867025)

If Microsoft wants to make WinFS a fundamental part of their strategy, they must back port it. Forcing developers to upgrade before they can develop is foolhardy.


I think you misspelled "monopoly"

Re:Sure... (5, Interesting)

Swamii (594522) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866881)

Yes, there is a hard deadline for Longhorn, and that is a good thing.

That said, WinFS will not make it into the hard deadline for Longhorn. That said, it will be available freely as a download, and possible as part of Windows Update, for Longhorn and other operating systems including XP and, yes, Win2003, some time after the Longhorn deadline.

Re:Sure... (1)

pg110404 (836120) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866943)

Maybe they realized they bit off far too much more than they could chew with longhorn and so they're trying to backport any new features that would be in the next one by putting it into XP?

As I understand it, winfs is some fancy way of turning the entire file system into a database, is that right? The idea being that you can simply do some SQL query like request to find out what you want? I'd like to know why? what is the point? Is it because it's supposed to support indexing and to speed up searches? How will that index be maintained and what kind of nightmare will it be to keep it up to date? What's the overhead to the index tables in terms of disk space and access times? If there are no indexes, what does it matter if the data is stored in separate files or carved in soap or some form of database data file?

Is it possible they're losing face with the long delays in longhorn and the lack of "innovative features" so they're trying to make themselves look better by throwing these token features into XP?

Re:Sure... (1, Insightful)

hawkbug (94280) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867046)

I agree - WinFS scares me. I believe ext3 is sort of like WinFS, is it not? I was scared of ext3 but I heard that since it was "journaled", it would eliminate files going missing if your machine was hard powered off. I've had very good luck with ext3, and if WinFS is going to be similar, it might not be all that bad - but then again, look who's actually developing it.

Re:Sure... (4, Interesting)

Qzukk (229616) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867173)

ext3 is ext2 with a journal, thats all.

If you want to see what filesystems are like when you add database features, look up some BeFS documentation from BeOS. There's a (sadly apparently now out of print) textbook on building filesystems using BeFS as a guide. While it's not really a database (it allows you define arbitrary indexes and allows searching on those indexes, but lacks most other features a database user would be familiar with) using it gives you a pretty good idea of how one that really was a database (with central data storage, relational algebra and set operations, etc.) would work.

Re:Sure... (1)

oliverthered (187439) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867083)

How will that index be maintained and what kind of nightmare will it be to keep it up to date?
Well I doubt it will be using slocate to hammer the HDD, they may do something like inotify used by Beagle [gnome.org] But I expect they will use a realtime hashtable and build a ballanced-btree index for the rest when there's a hash match, with some usage statistics to weight the results and caching, or variations there off. It should be a lot quicker than Beagle, be more responsive than locate, not hammer you hdd once a cron job and far faster than a manual search.

Vaporware? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866957)

I guess the question here is "for what reason does MS want to leave the impression WinFS will be available before longhorn"?

Re:Vaporware? (2, Insightful)

KarmaMB84 (743001) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867000)

That's not what they're saying. For one thing, WinFS won't even be in Longhorn but will apparently be avaiable for WinXP as well as Longhorn when they do finish it.

netcraft reports (0, Troll)

oliverthered (187439) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866967)

Longhorn is dead, long live longhorn.

How about Rieser FS (or JFS or XFS) (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866751)

Can Windows support any other modern filesystems such as Rieser 4?

I'd love to be able to use a filesystem that can be seen in a dual-boot environment; that's better than FAT32 or FAT16; but those are really the only choices now.

Re:How about Rieser FS (or JFS or XFS) (1)

mrseigen (518390) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866792)

ext2 and ext3 are supported by third-party drivers; I imagine the same is true for reiser.

Re:How about Rieser FS (or JFS or XFS) (1)

d1v1d3byz3r0 (758848) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866867)

Not for Reiser4. Reiser4 is still pretty bleeding-edge.

Re:How about Rieser FS (or JFS or XFS) (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11867178)

Well, considering that Linux does not officially support Reiser 4 yet, I'd say you can cross that off the list of filesystems you could access from Windows.

WinFS (4, Interesting)

mboverload (657893) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866753)

I don't know about you, but NTFS is fine for me. I mean, jesus, its a file system, not a damn search engine.

Re:WinFS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866798)

The only reason I don't like NTFS is the poor support on Linux. If WinFS has better support for dual-boot environments, I'm all for it.

(Remember Microsoft did announce that interopereability is a major focus for them.)

Otherwise, it seems a waste of my time to play with yet another set of incompatabilities within a windows-only environment.

Re:WinFS (5, Informative)

Ironsides (739422) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866823)

I mean, jesus, its a file system, not a damn search engine.

Quote from MS on WinFS:
One of the monumental problems organizations face today is aggregating information that's stored in disparate formats. Knowledge workers have long wanted to be able to search for content independent of format. WinFS allows the user to perform searches based on the metadata of the stored item, regardless of what type of file it is or which application created it.

So not only is it a file system, it is also a search engine.

Source:http://msdn.microsoft.com/data/winfs/ [microsoft.com]

Re:WinFS (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866906)

So not only is it a file system, it is also a search engine.

No, bad design if so. The FS allows the storing of metadata (nothing new here, even HPFS on OS/2 had the concept of per file metadata). This metadata can then be utilized to store additional information about the file that can then be searched on in a consistent manner (or really a singular place). Think of it as being able to store your mp3 tag info, Word document properties, etc in a single place, it would make writing an over-arching search engine a lot simpler. The actual app that does the searching (i.e. that examines the contents of the metadata and compares it to criteria you specify) is simply an application, NOT a part of the FS.

What WinFS is (2, Interesting)

hackwrench (573697) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867145)

From my understanding, WinFS is not a file system at all just a database API sitting on top of what is essentially NTFS http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=winfs+ntfs [google.com]

Re:WinFS (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866929)

So does that mean I can search for information on my hard drive in many flavours at the same time? IE search a database, my email, files on my hard drive etc, and it'll find a string? Or will I still have to do seperate searches (one in SQL, one using Outlook, one using Windows explorer (or grep or whatever)?

What I want is a file system which is also a version control system! (In Windows, if possible, given I use that and not some ancient Unix)

Re:WinFS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866991)

Ok, everyfile gets some overhead tacked on to facilitate searches. Probably a good idea, but not jump up and down exciting. Couldn't that be implemented on top of NTFS? Why a new FS?

Re:WinFS (2, Interesting)

RangerRick98 (817838) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866997)

WinFS allows the user to perform searches based on the metadata of the stored item

So where's the metadata come from? If it's dependent on the end user filling it in when they save the file to disk, I don't hold out a lot of hope for the usefulness of this idea. I rarely add any additional information about the files I save (e.g., Microsoft Word documents), and I don't know anyone who does.

Re:WinFS (1)

optimus2861 (760680) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867075)

So where's the metadata come from?

I would think it must be something akin to Windows Indexing Service -- which is always among the first services I kill on any new Windows install, FWIW.

Re:WinFS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11867166)

No, I bet you do, if only minimal. I bet you give that word document a name, so you know what to look for when you need to edit that document. I bet you probably also save word documents to a specific folder.

Now the reason you do these things, and only these things is simply because that is all you are able to do at the current moment. If you had the opportunity to better define what each item was, that you would. Most humans like being able to organize their personnal things, this system will bring that ability on the humble PC a step closer.

Re:WinFS (2, Insightful)

ThosLives (686517) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867077)

This is all well and good, except that unless there is a way to automatically determine metadata, or the person creating the document can forsee what type of metadata searches people in the future will use, this will not be that great a thing. In fact, it sounds like it will add all sorts of process overhead.

I know, for instance, that in my company we'd have to develop a process for writing the metadata, reviewing the metadata, and that sort of thing. Adding more data to something isn't going to improve the ability to find it; it's just more information. It's trading off one set of memory for another; instead of remembering where a file was, you have to remember what metadata you gave it.

I'd classify the "metadata" approach to file storage as a cute technology that is just another side of the same coin that looks good because it's new but really doesn't solve the underlying problem of information management.

Re:WinFS (1)

selectspec (74651) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866871)

What would be really interesting is for Microsoft to compare a desktop WinFS deployment use scenario to a system with NTFS with file indexing enabled.

Re:WinFS (2, Funny)

XzeroR3 (774011) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866883)

My google [google.com] partition works well.

Re:WinFS (1)

Swamii (594522) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866983)

It may be 'fine' as you see it; then again, searching my Windows box using the standard Windows search was also 'fine' until I started using tools like Google Desktop Search.

As a developer, WinFS's usefulness is obvious: storing desktop application settings, configuration, temporary files, even serialized runtime objects, is a royal pain when having to worry about actual files on disk. You have to worry about asynchronous file I/O, duplicate files, making sure directories exist, making sure you clean up your temporary files, making sure the user or some other program hasn't royally screwed you configuration files, just to name a few. With a database-backed file system, the developer only has to deal with data, not the underlying file system.

For users, storing and finding data becomes easier, at least theoretically. I guess it all depends on how dependant users become on metadata.

Re:WinFS (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11867122)

As a developer, WinFS's usefulness is obvious: storing desktop application settings, configuration, temporary files, even serialized runtime objects, is a royal pain when having to worry about actual files on disk. You have to worry about asynchronous file I/O, duplicate files, making sure directories exist, making sure you clean up your temporary files, making sure the user or some other program hasn't royally screwed you configuration files, just to name a few. With a database-backed file system, the developer only has to deal with data, not the underlying file system.

Huh?

Desktop application settings, configuration => the registry
Temporary files => GetTempFileName(), CreateFile() FILE_ATTRIBUTE_TEMPORARY FILE_FLAG_DELETE_ON_CLOSE
Worry about asynchronous file I/O => mutexes, file locking (how'd WinFS help this?)
Duplicate files - ?
Making sure directories exist => CreateDirectoryEx()
Making sure you clean up your temporary files => FILE_FLAG_DELETE_ON_CLOSE
Making sure the user of some other program hasn't royally screwed your configuration files => how'd WinFS help with this? Can't they overwrite the config files if you store them there, too?

Re:WinFS (1, Troll)

dsginter (104154) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867150)

Microsoft needs to keep everything locked up. NTFS was good enough for a while but now the linux driver [sourceforge.net] is maturing to the point where it is no longer a weapon. Remember, with Microsoft, everything is security through obscurity. And that goes for their financial security as well.

WinVapor (5, Funny)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866766)

WinFS announcements are one of Microsoft's most popular products. Thanks for the upgrade!

Re:WinVapor (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866934)

WinFS announcements are one of Microsoft's most popular products. Thanks for the upgrade!

I wouldn't be too quick to upgrade, remember, waiting for the .1 version is usually the safer bet.

Longhorn (5, Interesting)

0x461FAB0BD7D2 (812236) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866767)

If everything will be back-ported to XP and Windows 2003, how does Microsoft plan to make any money off Longhorn, which has cost the company a lot in development time and money?

Do they plan on back-porting the first versions of Avalon, Indigo and WinFS, and then providing feature updates to Longhorn only, forcing customers to update? Or is Longhorn really just XP SP3?

Re:Longhorn (3, Funny)

jerichohol (821580) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866866)

It will be probably XP SP6 by the time it is released.

Re:Longhorn (2, Insightful)

rsborg (111459) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866874)

If everything will be back-ported to XP and Windows 2003, how does Microsoft plan to make any money off Longhorn, which has cost the company a lot in development time and money?

Simple... claim that Longhorn is *much* more secure (and actually deliver, by taking some advice and shutting off certain "features" in legacy windows). So if you *want* to keep using the insecure POS that is XP, sure go ahead... otherwise, pay up for Longhorn... oh, and btw, we have all these SW vendors that are releasing at the same time as we are!

Re:Longhorn (1)

AkaXakA (695610) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866882)

Heck, with the announcements we've been getting (IE7 and now WinFS for XP) it wouldn't supprise me if they just backported Longhorn to winXP!

Re:Longhorn (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866908)

i really doubt average joe cares about winfs, avalon and all the other stuff...

Re:Longhorn (5, Interesting)

bfizzle (836992) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866919)

Maybe thats the point...?

The more news I see about feature of Longhorn it makes me wonder if M$ is pushing more towards the subscription model of their OS. Having users upgrade XP to Longhorn rather then sell Long Horn straight out. Start watching ELUA of these "upgrades" you might find yourself stuck in a subscription service called "Longhorn"

Re:Longhorn (1)

sporty (27564) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866925)

Maybe it's all an elaborate ploy. Get people all hyped up for longhorn, and start eeking features back so more people buy it that way and the upgrades that get backported?

Re:Longhorn (4, Funny)

Sheetrock (152993) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866928)

Expect seamless integration of these features, as well as the best support options, to be available in Longhorn.

We had Internet, 32-bit color, and multitasking in Windows 3.1, but no one seemed to complain about the jump to Windows 95 (especially because they didn't have to tinker with CONFIG.SYS/AUTOEXEC.BAT to get games working.) Similarly, while new advanced technologies may be available in XP for developers and power users to preview or even use it is no substitute for the successful integration and exploitation of these features at all levels of the operating system.

Re:Longhorn (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11867174)

People aren't going to upgrade Windows XP, but that's not how Microsoft sells its OS, anyway. New PCs from Dell, HP, etc. will ship with Longhorn, and MS will still make boatloads selling the new OS.

Umm, wait... (-1, Troll)

what_the_frell (690581) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866787)

The article says this: "It's unclear if Microsoft also is porting WinFS to Windows Server 2003" but the Slashdot post says this: "WinFS to be Available in WinXP".

Which is it?

Re:Umm, wait... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866814)

Duh, nevermind. Flame away. ;)

Re:Umm, wait... (2, Informative)

Narchie Troll (581273) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866879)

Windows Server 2003
WinXP

Different products. What's the issue?

Re:Umm, wait... (1)

Shachaf (781326) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866884)

The article also says (on the first line):
Microsoft is back-porting its WinFS file-system technology to Windows XP.

Maybe WinFS is only being ported to WinXP, and not to Server 2003.

What's left for Longhorn? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866788)

It seems to me that every major component that Microsoft has promoted for Longhorn is eventually being backported to Windows XP. What's going to be new in Longhorn?

Re:What's left for Longhorn? (5, Funny)

loraksus (171574) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867066)

You'll find out in 2010.

Re:What's left for Longhorn? (3, Informative)

SmokeHalo (783772) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867096)

The remaining functionality is called "fundamentals". Here's a link to an episode of The .NET Show [microsoft.com] that has a discussion of these "fundamentals". From the link:
Longhorn "Fundamentals" is an important part of what we feel is part of the core experience of Longhorn. It includes User Experience, System Security, Application Deployment, System Manageability, as well as many other features and capabilities.
Sounds perfectly nondescript to me, simply some buzzwords thrown together to give the impression of state-of-the-art design. Of course, I haven't watched the "show".

Re:What's left for Longhorn? (2, Funny)

indros (211103) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867160)

It won't be susceptible to the LAND attack [slashdot.org] , perhaps?

It never has been (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866791)

They've always maintained that it was dropped from Longhorn because of deadline constraints - it's always been the plan to put it in at a later (as far as I know unspecified) date.

Re:It never has been (1)

cens0r (655208) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866831)

I don't remember them ever saying it would be dropped from longhorn. They did say the WinFS file searches would not be supported across network shares. But that was it.

Why Longhorn? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866800)

And now what reason do I have to upgrade to longhorn?

Oh Wait
1. Slower Performance. Why would I acctually want free system resources?
2. DRM, Who doesn't want their rights managed by M$
3. Spending More Money. Who doesn't want to give their money to M$, really?

Re:Why Longhorn? (3, Funny)

theparanoidcynic (705438) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866988)

Don't worry. I'm sure that the cracked version that gets released a week before it ships will take care of the second and third points.

Actually, by the time Longhorn actually ships Linux 3.2 will be stable. That will take care of all three.

Hold it (0, Redundant)

varmittang (849469) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866802)

So is Longhorn dead, or just going to become another pointless upgrade if MS keeps back porting everything to XP.

Beta-test on desktop strategy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866833)

Seems they want to throw all their pre-release stuff in their desktops (XP) to protect the "stability" of their "servers" (NT, longhorn)?

Microsoft has hired... (5, Funny)

lbmouse (473316) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866809)

Frankie Avalon [history-of-rock.com] and The Indigo Girls? [indigogirls.com]

Re:Microsoft has hired... (1)

terraformer (617565) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867014)

Microsoft has hired...Frankie Avalon and The Indigo Girls?

Aww hell... I can see some marketing "genius" reading that and saying to themselves what a great launch party gag it would be to have performers with then same names as the code names for the products being launched. And I thought the Rolling Stones and "Start Me Up" was bad...

Maybe won't be ported to Server 2003? (2, Informative)

Black Cardinal (19996) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866835)

After all, they probably want to give people an incentive to migrate their servers, but realize that servers with WinFS will be adopted more quickly if the large installed base of WinXP clients can work with it. But if Server 2003 can support it as well, then there goes one reason to migrate.

Re:Maybe won't be ported to Server 2003? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11867131)

Or, more likely, it's buggy and they care less if your XP desktop crashes than if your server crashes.

I expect they'll port it to Server2003 when and only when it's stability is proven.

Can't wait. (0)

nberardi (199555) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866836)

I can't wait this is going to be awsome to develop on. If it is everything they are making it out to be, which is doubtful at this time, I would love querying my file system with SQL, and attaching XML meta data to the files.

Re:Can't wait. (1)

arkanes (521690) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867108)

If you manage to sucker enough people to get your mac mini, you'll be happy to find out that Spotlight, which will be in the next version of OS X, does all this stuff except better. Like you don't haat to "attach XML metadata to files" (and seriously, who wants to query XML with SQL anyway?). http://developer.apple.com/macosx/tiger/spotlight. html [apple.com]

So they go from (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866841)

"No WinFS in Longhorn" to "WinFS in WinXP"?

So is, like, WinFS just going to like stop working as soon as Longhorn arrives, or what?

"Technology" (4, Interesting)

hey (83763) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866856)

Could we please stop using the word "technology" when "component" or "chunk o' software" would do fine. It's Microsoft speak.

Re:"Technology" (2, Insightful)

Sloppy (14984) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867113)

But a component or a chunk can suck. A "technology" never sucks. A "technology" can merely be improperly used or underused, or at worst, superceded by even newer "technology." And anyone can call bullshit on Microsoft crap, but if you call bullshit on anyone's "technology," you're a luddite.

BTW, it's not just MS, but all of their kind. For example, some might debate the usefulness of hyperthreading, but no one would deny that "hyperthreading technology" is a neat thing.

Re:"Technology" (1)

Glowing Fish (155236) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867170)

I have big objections to the word "technology", on the basis that it doesn't mean anything.
Martin Heidegger can go on for pages and pages about "enframing", but really, "technology" means nothing.

Tinfoil Alert (1)

Prince Vegeta SSJ4 (718736) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866900)

Perhaps this means that Longhorn will be delayed for a far greater period than initially expected. Microsoft can make some brownie points by releasing this hyped file system for free, heading off the negative press over the postponment of longhorn or allow them to abandon it (by saying the majority of features will be backported to XP) in favor of another OS.

When is this backport being released?? (4, Interesting)

mcc (14761) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866923)

Depending on when this arrives, this could possibly be an attempt to take the wind out of the sails of Apple's Tiger release-- probably to arrive sometime before midyear-- which lists as one of its major selling points a new feature called "spotlight" [apple.com] . Spotlight is a system service that has been described as offering similar functionality to WinFS, but does it without filesystem changes. I don't know exactly how accurate this description is, of course, since though Microsoft seems to talk an awful lot about WinFS and talk about its hypothetical technical capabilities, they never seem to give specifics on exactly how it works for the end user and what it means for the end user...

Of course, the above assumes Microsoft still actually cares about what Apple does, which isn't all that likely.

Standard?? (4, Funny)

GNUALMAFUERTE (697061) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866937)

I think that the most important Question here is ... is microsoft going to provide an specification for the fs?, and, in case they do, will it be licensed in a GPL-compatible way?

Re:Standard?? (2, Funny)

theparanoidcynic (705438) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867081)

Open standards? Microsoft?

Oh wait, you were serious. Hang on while I laugh harder.

Is this compelling? (1)

Matey-O (518004) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866958)

There's another File System structure Microsoft worked on: WebDAV. They built a couple of file management suites on it. It's gone, largely, nowhere.

It's JUST enough to make the things that aren't supported a royal pain to implement. Dropping another filesystem in your OS just Must Always Work. Otherwise, no one will use it. We've got a Sharepoint Portal Server that sits largely idle because it didn;t have 100% backing from Microsoft.

Re:Is this compelling? (2, Informative)

SweetAndSourJesus (555410) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867128)

WebDAV...It's gone, largely, nowhere.

Mac OS X uses WebDav to mount iDisks. Tons of web developers use it in Dreamweaver.

I don't know if that's exactly somewhere, but it surely isn't nowhere.

WebDAV is used by .Mac iDisks (1)

Vandil X (636030) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867176)

WebDAV is used by .Mac iDisks.

Considering that iDisks are used for backups and hosting Web sites by a large number of people, I don't think the technology has "gone no where."

There's even an iDisk client for Windows XP.

MS Windows postings on Slashdot (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11866959)

Lately there have been a number posts on Slashdot relating to the proprietory Microsoft Windows "operating system". Isn't this irrelevant? I think we should focus on serious and interesting subjects and not on some obsolete stuff.

Apple... (1)

nuggetman (242645) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866980)

Apple releases Tiger with Spotlight
MS adds WinFS to XP, says "Hey, we can do that too, you don't need to wait for Longhorn!"

Info? (1)

Mastadex (576985) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866985)

How does such an Filesystem compare to current file systems such as FAT32 and NTFS. Mainly in the categories of speed and data efficiency (prevent fragmentation as much as possible)??

Can't wait! (4, Funny)

Ancient_Hacker (751168) | more than 9 years ago | (#11866992)

ooooh, o00000h, oooooooh! Can't wait.

After seeing how completely incompetent and pants-wetting funny awful Microsoft is at file searching with the little doggie, I can't wait to experience having a few more unnecessary, superfluous, extravagant, and bloated layers HELPING me.

In other words.. (4, Insightful)

loraksus (171574) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867027)

Longhorn won't come out until 2010 or so, and Microsoft will be able to charge for "Windows 98^K^KXP Special Edition".
Not a bad idea.
If you have the ability to put off the release of another OS for years, you can save loads of money on development, but still have a steady income stream from copies bundled with computers (every dell, etc from 2001 to 2006, and those of us who had beta copies of windows 97 all know how the 2006 date will work) and the occasional consumer retail purchase.
Look, I'm not saying that MS isn't innovating anything, but compared to everyone else, they move at a glacial pace.
Since there really isn't any competition (and I use this word as "an OS that could hurt significantly MS financially", so please, no flames), they can sit back and release stuff whenever they feel like, but still have a pretty much guaranteed income stream.

Excuse my ignorance but... (4, Interesting)

pandrijeczko (588093) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867058)

...what's the point of a search engine built into the filesystem? Surely it's just adding overhead for no reason if you don't need it.

Yes, I'm a UNIX-type person but keeping files in a logical directory structure along with copious use of find and grep commands seems to be good enough on most of the systems I work on. I even use WinGrep on Windows for that level of text searching...

The Registry is a database and definitely a weak point of Windows when it comes to resilience. NTFS seems to do a reasonable job of keeping the filesystem intact, why add a risk of introducing resilience problems into the filesystem by linking it to a database? Unless it's just a marketing ploy to sell you an MSSQL license at the same time.

Whatever anyone says about UNIX/Linux, the concept of keeping operating system tools simple and doing a good job of one specific task has allowed it to earn the stability and resilience reputation. Sure, you've got to spend time shell-scripting to unleash its full power but that's half the fun of it.

I'd love someone to give me a definitive answer as to why the concept of WinFS is so good - I genuinely don't understand all the hoohah about it.

Check out (0, Redundant)

Run4yourlives (716310) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867082)

OSX's Spotlight functionality... I think you can find a demo on their site.

I'm not defending WinFS, but the "search engine in OS" idea is pretty powerful if done right.

Re:Excuse my ignorance but... (3, Interesting)

SuiteSisterMary (123932) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867117)

I think it's good for all the same reasons that BeOS's metadata filesystem was good; the more metadata you can take out of the file format and put into the file descriptors, the better.

Re:Excuse my ignorance but... (1, Interesting)

Anita Coney (648748) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867171)

The point of WinFS has nothing to do with making searches easier. If Microsoft really wanted to make searching your hard drive easier, it could simply include a better search app than the crappy one currently built it.

The point of WinFS is to make it illegal (i.e., a patent violation) for third party OSes to network with and access to Windows boxes.

MS FindFast + NTFS ~= WINFS? (0, Flamebait)

flumps (240328) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867091)

Sooo.. this is a FS with "MS Office FindFast" built in -- grreat. More slowness.

Would there be any way to turn the damn thing off?

Welcome to several months ago (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11867095)

People have known about this for a while. Welcome to quite a long time ago, slashdot.

it's already shipping with Linux (2, Interesting)

idlake (850372) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867148)

Linux already has the technologies that comprise WinFS: generic metadata (e.g., ReiserFS 4), file alternation monitoring (e.g., FAM, dnotify), and higher level functionality being built on it (e.g., rlocate, Beagle, Dashboard, etc.).

Which of these "stick" on the Linux platform in the end will be decided by users. I think indexing and search will be popular, but more complex metadata schemes won't be.

It beats me why it is taking Microsoft so long to get their act together on this one.

Logical move (4, Interesting)

DeepDarkSky (111382) | more than 9 years ago | (#11867149)

Getting WinFS out there means they can work out more kinks before release of Longhorn and at the same time provide the "benefits" of WinFS to people earlier. Separating out key pieces of the OS is always good for the still changing OS. Similar to the Linux/UNIX FSes, after all. This will make the transition to Longhorn "smoother".

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?