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October 1997

Microsoft Systems Journal Homepage

Editor's Note

The heat and humidity of summer in the Big Apple were upon us as we toiled to get this month's copy to press. Even with noses to our Natural Keyboards, we were not oblivious to some of the festivities perspiring around us. The city was treated to yet another free concert in Central Park! That quintessential New Yorker Garth Brooks managed to venture north of the Mason-Dixon Line to host one of the largest blimp and helicopter jamborees in recent history. While he was here (along with several hundred thousand out-of-state fans), we're hoping he was also making a pitch to join the digitally recorded voices of Placido Domingo, Jackie Mason, Dr. Ruth, and a raft of other celebs urging us all to buckle up in the back seats of our cabs. During this aerial display we dared to quench our thirst with yet another New York innovention, the Martha Stewart-tini. Yes, you've read correctly: an actual beverage neatly composed of Skyy Vodka and Goldschlager, served in a martini glass with a sugar-coated rim and just a dash of bitters. It's a good thing.
From our offices high above the ten-gallon hats, we see everyone at Microsoft saddling up fresh horses for the latest beta releases of Windows 98 and Windows NT 5.0. You MSDN Professional subscribers should have your hands on the Windows 98 Beta 2 soon. In addition to improvements over Beta 1, features new to Beta 2 include a built-in FrontPad HTML editor (we're thinking of this as a FrontPage Lite), built-in NetShow, updated Broadcast Architecture support, and of course a revamped Internet Explorer.
What's on its way for the Windows NT 5.0 Beta? Zero Administration Windows (ZAW), power management, changes to NTFS, the Microsoft Management Console (MMC), Windows NT 5.0 services, Active Directory Services (ADS), and distributed security. Let's not forget new advancements to COM, DirectX and the American Honky-Tonk Bar Association (AHTBA)—we thought we'd throw that in to see if you're still with us.
Also new is the Win32 Driver Model (WDM), a common driver model for Windows 98 and Windows NT 5.0. WDM will enable some common types of devices using USB and IEEE 1394 to have a single driver for both operating systems. WDM has been implemented by adding selected Windows NT Kernel services into Windows 98 Beta 2 via a special virtual device driver (NTKERN.VXD). This allows Windows 98 Beta 2 to maintain full legacy device driver support while adding support for new WDM drivers. In next month's MSJ, Walter Oney will take time off from polishing his rope tricks to introduce WDM in glorious detail. Next month will also feature Wild Matt Pietrek and Calamity Mary Kirtland exploring what's new with Windows NT 5.0 and COM.
In the meantime, pardner, here's hoping that you're the three millionth Garth fan to purchase one of his concert tickets. We hear he's very generous. Let us know how appreciative he was.

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