Windows Blackcomb

Not to be confused with Windows 7.
Windows Blackcomb
Version of Microsoft Windows
OS familyWindows NT
Windows XP
Windows Longhorn
Windows Server 2003

Blackcomb (later renamed to Vienna) was the codename for a version of Microsoft Windows originally meant to be released in the second half of 2002 as a successor to Windows XP.[1][2]

History[edit | edit source]

The Blackcomb project was originally announced as a successor to Windows XP. It was intended to be a major release, including many substantial changes to Windows, such as a full .NET User Experience, integration with various Web services and an advanced storage system called WinFS.[3] As Microsoft was finishing up the feature set, the company realized that it would not be able to hit the expected release date and started working on a smaller release, Windows Longhorn. This caused Blackcomb to be postponed to around 2003 or 2004.[4] By the middle of 2003, Longhorn would acquire many features originally intended for the Blackcomb project. As a result, the release date for both projects would be postponed even further.

When Microsoft announced the cancellation of Longhorn Server in late 2002, the name Blackcomb became synonymous with the successor of Windows .NET Server 2003.[5] This was in line with Microsoft's vision for Blackcomb - by 2004, most, if not all, of the user experience ideas were moved over to Longhorn, and server-side features, such as improvements to the Dynamic Systems Initiative, became the primary focus of Blackcomb.[6] Despite this, certain Longhorn features were moved over to Blackcomb after Longhorn's development reset in 2004, one such example being WinFS.[7]

No builds are known to have been compiled under this name. In early 2006, as Windows Vista was being finished, Blackcomb was renamed to Vienna with the intention to introduce a new set of code names derived from popular cities and locations.[8] The project was eventually canceled and replaced with a new project code named "Windows 7", as it was realized that the number of features that had been assigned to Blackcomb was simply too large to be completed in a reasonable time.[9]

Alleged presentation[edit | edit source]

There is an alleged presentation of Blackcomb that is commonly shared across different media outlets, however the focus of that demonstration was actually an MSN Explorer user interface concept.[10] As a result, many features were attributed to the scrapped Blackcomb project by various news sources even though they were never intended for it.[11]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. Microsoft Outlines Plans for Whistler and Blackcomb, BetaNews. 10 February 2000.
  2. J. Foley, Mary. Gates: .Net operating systems on tap, ZDNET. 11 July 2000.
  3. Rashid, Richard. Remarks by Richard Rashid, Senior Vice President, Microsoft Research, Microsoft News. 29 July 2002.
  4. Thurrott, Paul. Blackcomb Pushed Back, Longhorn on Deck, IT Pro Today. 30 October 2001.
  5. Bekker, Scott. Windows "Longhorn" Server Cancelled, Redmond. 11 November 2002.
  6. Riccuti, Mike. Blazing the trail to Longhorn Server, ZDNET. 20 May 2004.
  7. Fried, Ina. New file system has long road to Windows, ZDNET. 10 December 2004.
  8. Fried, Ina. Microsoft looks beyond Vista, sees Vienna, CNET. 23 January 2006.
  9. Chen, Raymond. What was the code name for Windows 7?, The Old New Thing. 22 July 2019.
  10. MSN Explorer user interface concept (mislabeled). August 2001.
  11. Dominguez, David. Blackcomb: cuando Windows dejó de ser Windows, Elmundo Navegante. 17 August 2001.