Microsoft announced yesterday that Windows .NET Server (Win.NET Server) 2003 will hit the Release Candidate 2 (RC2) milestone within 2 weeks. The company will publicly launch the product in April 2003, although Microsoft has yet to announce the exact date or venue for the launch.

Win.NET Server is the next version of Windows 2000 Server, a product that Microsoft originally developed alongside Windows XP. But development of the two products veered in February 2001, when Microsoft decided to stay in tune with customer needs by extending the timeline for server launches. The company recently announced a similar scheme for its next-generation Windows products; the Longhorn project, due in 2005, will now include only desktop Windows versions, and the Blackcomb project will be a server-based successor to Win.NET Server.