Microsoft is "getting a little desperate" with the release of Windows 2000 (NT 5.0), according to a GarnerGroup analyst.
Ken Dulaney, Gartner's vice president for mobile computing and storage, said he was skeptical of the need to upgrade from Windows 9x, particularly on the client side.
"This is the first time we've really seen the same operating system on servers and desktops," he said.
Dulaney said Gartner would not recommend Windows 2000 to its clients until at least the release of the first service pack. He slated Win 2000 for release in the second quarter of 2000, and said the release of the service pack would be six to nine months after that, placing it sometime in 2001.
Dulaney said many users may wait further for Microsoft's next OS -- designed for Intel Corp.'s 64-bit Merced processor -- due out in 2002.
Dulaney further dug the boot into Microsoft, aiming also at Windows CE. Gartner would not recommend WinCE to its clients because of incompatibility with other Microsoft applications. For instance, in e-mail attachments, the sender must preconvert the document, Word or Excel, to WinCE format so the receiver can read it.
However, Dulaney said WinCE was very important to Microsoft's strategy, and within a few years would be a serious challenge to 3Com Corp.'s Palm computing platform.