Research firm Gartner Inc. turned soothsayer on Wednesday by predicting that Windows Vista will be the last big release of Microsoft Corp.'s Windows operating system.
The era of monolithic deployments of software releases is nearing an end and Microsoft will participate in the trend toward more flexible updates, Gartner forecast in a list of forecasts about 2007.
Mary Jo Foley, writing on ZDNet Blogs, has responded to Gartner's predictions by questioning the definition of a 'big' release.
"Bottom line: It seems a little premature to claim that Microsoft is done with major Windows releases. Even if the Redmondians further blur the lines between service packs and full-fledged OS updates (as they seem intent on doing), Microsoft and its hardware/software/services partners aren't going to let go of the concept of the big-bang OS update any time soon."
Foley makes mention of Microsoft's 'Cloud-OS' concept, which is looking at ways Windows Live could integrate with Windows Operating Systems in the future. The implication is that in the future, Windows may become more of an online service in the Web 2.0 vein.