Update: The launch date of Windows Server 2008 is official now.
Update2: Rumors about the release date of Windows Server 2008.
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Some new sites are speculating that the release of Windows Server 2008 might be delayed. The Windows Server Division Weblog meanwhile denied these claims. Microsoft is still planning to release Windows Server 2008 to manufacturing in the second half of 2007.
Joe Wilcox from Microsoft Watch has an impressive list of arguments supporting his claim that Windows 2008 will not be released this year. It all sounds quite reasonable to me. This argument is most convincing in my view:
Beta 3, the first public release of Windows Server 2008, has been available for nearly six weeks. Time between Beta 2 and Beta 3 was about 11 months.
After Beta 3 there probably will be a release candidate and then maybe a second release candidate like it was with Vista. Considering that it took MS 11 months to release Beta 3, it is hard to believe that we will see the final product this year. I mean, it is June already and they are still adding features, like the IIS7 support in Server Core.
Anyway, even though it might take quite some time until you will deploy this new server OS, I recommend, you start learning about its new features now. Together with Vista, Windows Server 2008 will change a lot in your network. So you'd better get acquainted with their new tools and features as soon as possible. This way, you can learn about them step by step, and you won't be in a hurry later. I'll continue blogging about the new functionality of Windows Server 2008 in detail. So stay tuned!