Microsoft Codenames

If you are interested in Microsoft Technologies and keep track of Microsoft products and technologies you would have already noticed that Microsoft has a unique codename for every project. Microsoft products start life as a project codename. Exactly how these codenames are decided remains a mystery, and indeed some suggest that there is meaning to be found hidden in their selection. Such a theory is encouraged by the eagerness with which Microsoft representatives suggest that we should not attach too much significance to codenames, even implying the names are selected almost at random.

I am personally a fan of Microsoft codenames. The problem is that, with the amount projects Microsoft is working on, it’s really hard for us to keep track of all the codenames. Below you will find a list of product codenames and their derivations:

Codename

Product

Derivation

DEVELOPMENT TOOLS

Thunder

Visual Basic

 

Boston

Visual Studio 97

 

Blackbird

Internet Studio, a development environment for MSN which eventually became Visual InterDev.

 

Aspen

Visual Studio 98 (6.0)

Ski resort in Colorado.

Jakarta

Visual J++ 6.0

Capital of Indonesia, located on the island of Java.

Cool

C#

Short for ‘C-based Object-Oriented Language’.

Rainier

Visual Studio .NET

Mount Rainier is a dormant volcano south of Seattle.

Everett

Visual Studio .NET 2003

Town north of Seattle.

Whidbey

Visual Studio .NET 2005

Island north of Seattle.

Whitehorse

Design tools supplied with Visual Studio .NET 2005

Capital of Yukon Territory in Canada which became famous during the Klondike Gold Rush.

Burton

Visual Studio 2005 Team System

Unknown, although it is the name of a North American manufacturer of snowboards.

Orcas

Successor to VS.NET 2005 for developing ‘Longhorn’ applications

Island north of Whidbey.

Hawaii

Successor to ‘Orcas’

An island ‘much further out’ than Orcas or Whidbey. Also, where the development team plan to celebrate its completion.

OPERATING SYSTEMS

Janus

Windows 3.1

 

Sparta

Windows for Workgroups 3.1

 

Snowball

Windows for Workgroups 3.11

 

Daytona

Windows NT 3.5

 

Cairo

Collected technologies that may eventually come to fruition in Longhorn.

Capital of Egypt on the river Nile.

Impala

Windows NT4 Embedded

 

Chicago

Windows 95

The windy city.

Nashville

Internet Explorer 4 Desktop Update for Windows 95

The home of country music, in Tennessee.

Memphis

Windows 98

City in Tennessee.

Whistler

Windows XP

Mountain in Canadian ski resort around four hours drive north of Seattle. (The ‘XP’ stands for eXPerience.)

Lonestar

Tablet PC 2004

 

Longhorn

Successor to Windows XP

The Longhorn Saloon & Grill is situated between the Whistler and Blackcomb mountains.

Indigo

Communication services in ‘Longhorn’

 

Avalon

Display services used by ‘Longhorn’

 

Blackcomb

Forthcoming server-side version of Longhorn

Another mountain in the Whistler-Blackcomb ski resort.

BACKEND SERVERS

Sphinx

SQL Server 7.0

Mythical creature famous for asking riddles.

Plato

SQL Server 7.0 OLAP Services

One of the greatest analytical thinkers in ancient Greece and pupil to Socrates.

Shiloh

SQL Server 2000

Location of major Civil War battle in Tennessee.

Liberty

SQL Server 2000 64-bit

 

Aurum

SQL Server 2000 data mining features

Latin word for gold.

Yukon

SQL Server 2005

Yukon Territory in Canada, capital city Whitehorse.

Osmium

Exchange Server 5.5

One of the Platinum group of elements and the most dense metal known. Atomic number 77 in the Periodic table.

Platinum

Exchange 2002

Silvery-white metal often used in jewellery. Atomic number 78 in the Periodic table.

Titanium

Exchange 2003

As strong as steel but half the weight. Atomic Number 22 in the Periodic table.

Kodiak

Abandoned successor to Exchange 2003 that was supposed to use the SQL Server 2005 database engine.

Island in the Gulf of Alaska.

Falcon

Message Queue Server (MSMQ)

 

Viper

Transaction Server 2.0

 

Tahoe

SharePoint Server 2001

A lake resort between California and Nevada.

Hydra

Windows NT Terminal Services

Multi-headed dragon-like creature from Greek mythology.

Babylon

Host Integration Server 2000

 

Cedar

COM Transaction Integrator for CICS and IMS (COMTI)

 

Wolfpack

Cluster Server

 

Vienna

Office Live Communication Server 2005

Capital of Austria.

Hermes

System Management Server

 

MOBILE PLATFORMS

Pegasus

Windows CE 1.0

 

Cedar

Windows CE 3.0

 

Merlin

Pocket PC 2002

 

Stinger

Smartphone 2002

 

Starlite

.NET Compact Framework 1.0

 

Talisker

Windows CE .NET

The only whisky distillery on the Isle of Skye.

MISCELLANEOUS

Cirrus

Access 1.0

 

Athena

Outlook Express

 

Hailstorm

.NET My Services

 

Nile

OLE DB

River in Africa

Kajera

OLE DB provider for ODBC

River that, like the Nile, flows from Lake Victoria.

Trident

Dynamic HTML

 

Denali

Active Server Pages

Denali National Park in Alaska contains North America’s highest mountain.

Springboard

Microsoft’s security project which will result in Office 2003 SP1, Windows XP SP1 and Windows Server 2003 SP1

 

Palladium

A forthcoming secure run-time environment called Next Generation Secure Computing Base (NGSCB)

Silvery-white metal in the Platinum group. Atomic Number 46 in the Periodic Table.

Xenon

Successor to the Xbo

 

 

Note:

The above list was obtained from: http://www.dnjonline.com/articles/backend/codenames.asp.

(This list was last updated in May 2005)

Additional References:

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  1. Saturday, July 1, 2006 at 12:08 pm | #1

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