Following my chat with Rich about the Gartner report on Windows, Mike Dixon, Microsoft's Technical Support Manager, called me to answer any questions I might have.

He made an analogy with the development of car engines, which are now far more complex than they were 20 years ago and yet powerful and reliable with a simple User Interface.

We also discussed the comment about Windows being "too big", which is driven mainly by functionality – "the Windows OS handles such a wide variety of workloads from a simple web-email client, through massively intensive gaming performance via a stable, reliable and most importantly secure platform for business applications.

Should there be a separate lower cost version that limits a user to one kind of experience? Should we have 15 different versions to support different use-case scenarios?" Mike's response on the comment about Vista representing only "incremental improvements" was that's exactly what the market was asking for.

Concerning the article's comments on virtualisation, he thought there was something in the point about Hypervisors and this being the solution that everyone needs, but it's only part of the story – application virtualisation is important here, so is presentation virtualisation. "What about VDI (Virtual Desktop Infrastructure)?

There's a number of pieces of this particular jigsaw missing – but I think Microsoft is amassing all of the right constituent parts to deliver on virtualisation across server/desktop and more in the coming years.

If you look at Windows Server 2008 - Hyper-V and Windows Core – then add on specific roles which just add the right sections (modules) of the code then this is what Gartner seem to be asking for – and it's what we are delivering Server Side at least, right now.

The Role defines which parts of code are installed which in turn reduces the functionality of the OS, reduces the core OS

I was on the Government Computing Innovation Awards Judging Panel, which met over lunch at Boisdale of Belgravia (Victoria). Very nice. Disappointingly, many of the entries did not seem particularly innovative, which was especially true of the Green IT category. There was unanimity on the overall winner, 'though. The Awards Ceremony is at Madame Tussauds on Thursday (24th).

The afternoon was holiday to attend a wedding in Hastings. I missed the marriage, but arrived in time for the main course at the Reception. J