According to attendees at Microsoft's annual Executive Synergy Conference in Seattle, the company has once again confirmed the Windows 2000 release schedule first revealed in WinInfo. As previously reported, Windows 2000 Beta 3 is "on track for release on April 21st," Microsoft representatives said this week.

And in a separate development, the company has even confirmed October 6th as the final Windows 2000 release date. As WinInfo readers know, I've been floating the October 6 date for over a month now.

"Yes, that date is an internal goal date," said a Microsoft spokesperson to ZDNET. "But no, I don't think that's the set RTM \[release to manufacturing\] date. What's important to remember is that date does not include any customer feedback."

Uh-huh. The problem with that theory, of course, is that Windows 2000 is likely to go RTM over the summer, and be released on October 6th. Microsoft has almost six months to complete Windows 2000 between the release of Beta 3 and the final build.

The company also talked about upcoming releases of SQL Server. SQL Server 8.0, code-named "Shiloh," is due sometime in 2000 and will probably require Windows 2000. This release focuses on ease-of-use, scalability, and Internet commerce, said attendees. Most surprisingly, Shiloh will also feature XML support. The company noted that 6.5 million copies of SQL Server 7.0 have shipped since the product was released in January