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  Windows XP Service Pack 2: The Inside Story
Time: 11:04 EST/16:04 GMT | News Source: SuperSite for Windows | Posted By: Chris Hedlund

SuperSite readers will remember Todd Wanke as the guy who ran Microsoft's War Room for Windows Server 2003 (chronicled in Windows Server 2003: The Road To Gold Part Two: Developing Windows). Todd, you may recall, had pledged to never again run a War Room after the grueling Windows Server 2003 development process. "No way," he said, laughing, when I had asked him then if he would do it again. "No way." But in mid-2003, Microsoft needed Todd again, this time for what would ultimately prove to be the most secure client product that the company would ship to date: Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2). Recognizing how strategically important it was that Microsoft get this release right, he threw caution to the wind and signed on for what he initially envisioned as a three-month project. Over a year later, Todd and a virtual team of Microsofties that worked outside of the usually strict hierarchical system at Microsoft delivered Windows XP SP2 to an eager audience. The SP2 product they shipped bore little resemblance to Microsoft's original plans for the release, but was instead a far more secure and stable product that, ultimately, made XP a better operating system. In early December, I sat down with Todd, Ryan Burkhardt, and Jon Murchinson to discuss XP SP2 and the virtual team that made it happen. Here is their story.

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#1 By 37 ( at 12/23/2004 6:48:29 PM
Hal, I have now tried twice to reply to your post in depth and for some reason it just disappeared twice from my screen before I could even post it. I will be back!

BTW, your post is BEYOND inaccurate in *most* areas.

#2 By 23275 ( at 12/24/2004 9:22:10 AM
#1, #4 - What?

Man that would be nice and when you return to your home planet, I'd like to go with you, because it sounds like a great place to live.

That said, "your're wrong." I've supported what is perhaps one of the best OSS initiatives in existence - it uses OSS, but has a commercial side - that has failed. "I just paid another of their aging debts and carry significant aging AR from them - signing a huge note excusing their debt." I've watched OSS cost a heck of a lot more than was ever anticipated and I've also watched it stumble technically - the tools you speak are not there in the same way they are form MS.

On the other hand, DSI, IBF and many other MS initiatives "fuel" not only our support of these guys, but a lot of small, medium and various divisions within large companies with services and custom software that one can manage and build quickly and less expensively.

I live in that reality everyday and actually have to eat the costs associated with OSS - despite a great dev team, a solid product and more than 6 million in fuel.

In my opinion, the very nature of OSS is one giant Shim - lacking any kind of consistency and direction. People were hooked by Unices performance at lower prices and got neither. In the meantime, a rag-tag group of "toasters that could" tapped one drag-bunt at a time and beat the crap out of that lie - "Using MS Software and Tools!"

Financials do not lie - not mine and not those of our customers. Nor do they lie [but they try to] from those trying to make a buck using OSS - and it's not just one example, either - there are three and I've carried a lot more water for each than I care to think about. OSS may have been a great idea, but that's all it is and XP SP2 compared to the mess that OSS is, is just as it runs in the real-world - a very fine step MS made which is consistent with the direction they took toward more secure software. MS software can be managed and that translates into more profitable revenue.

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