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Path: gmdzi!unido!mcsun!uunet!microsoft!alistair
From: (Alistair BANKS)
Subject: Windows NT shown at Comdex
Message-ID: <>
Date: 3 Nov 91 20:01:16 GMT
Organization: Microsoft Corp.
Lines: 59

I'm re-posting here a quick write-up I posted on Compuserve of what
we showed at Comdex last week - hope its interesting -- Alistair.

At Comdex we showed all 3 promised configurations of Windows NT - that is,
Windows NT (uniprocessor) on 386/486, Windows NT on a RISC workstation (MIPS
R4000, ARC prototype), and Windows NT on an NCR 4*50MHz 486 Symetric
MultiProcessing Box. We showed some Win3.x applications running binary
compatibly, even printing and exchanging data using the clipboard (Corel Draw
and WinWord 1.0) and we also showed three applications that have already been
ported to the 32-bit Windows API (WIN32 API) - DesignView from Computervision,
Futuresoft's Dynacomm Elite (3270 emulation on various SNA links) and
Microsoft's Excel. We also announced that we'd successfully met our deadline
of shipping the first pre-release toolkits this year (two months befor the
external deadline, dec 31st!).

We are all pretty happy about this and know by the feedback about the
quality & reliability of what we showed, together with the RISC and Symetric
Multi-processing demos suprised people - This isnt vapor!

As for public pre-release kits, we're still on schedule for a release soon
after the turn of this year. Thus far we've been putting the pre-release in
the hands of the most major companies (Lotus, Novell, WordPerfect, Borland etc
etc) and will have reached a few hundred companies before we go completely
public - All pre-release SDKs will be available only on CD-ROM. We're
committed to final delivery in 1992, aiming for mid-year.

Windows NT is a secure scaleable operating system, secure to better than C2
level, and scaleable through RISC support and Symetric Multiproccing - all
this and yet we run Dos & Win16 applications available today, and new Win32
applications which are a compatible source-level superset of today's apps.
Windows NT has the same user interface and shell components as Win 3.1, so its
easy to mix Win3.1 & Windows NT machines in one installation.

Windows NT is the high-end offering of Microsoft's operating system line -
Dos, Windows, Windows NT - each one runs the apps of the preceeding version,
the relevant APIs being Int 21, Win16 & Win32 - Windows NT is our first
version of Windows to deliver the Win32 API, Dos-based Windows will be
enhanced to run Win32 applications in a release following Windows 3.1.

The Win32 API adds pre-emption, threads, seperate-address spaces,
memory-mapped file i/o, shared-memory & semaphores and completes the base API
of Windows so that no one need rely on Int 21-type calls or C-runtime, and
adds networking APIs such as NamedPipes, Mailslots, RPC-support, file sharing
& print control APIs, GDI is enhanced with Bezier Curves, Paths,
Transformations, and the input model is desynchronised so that no busy
application could block the user from working with another application at any
time (even for 'old' Win16 applications).

We're sorry that we can't simultaneously put such an important new release in
the hands of everyone, but hope that understanding our need for a staged
release, you can be patient until our public release. For those of you with
the Win3.1 beta, you can indicate by fax to those beta coordinators that
you'll be interested in Windows NT and they'll mark their database
accordingly. For others, please be assured that we'll avertise the public
pre-release here and everywhere, so you wont miss it!

-- Alistair Banks, Microsoft Systems Division.

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