Representatives from Microsoft have finally confirmed that the second release candidate of Windows 2000, or RC2, will not ship by Labor Day as planned but that the delay did not mean that the final release would slip. The company still plans to release Windows 2000 to manufacturing before the end of calendar year 1999.

"We are still on track for \[releasing Windows 2000 this year\]," Keith White, the marketing director for Microsoft's Business and Enterprise Division told InfoWorld this week, "but if the quality is not there people will not mind it slipping a little bit."

Perhaps. But the reality here is that each release since Beta 3 RC1 back in March has slipped a bit more than the last. Sources are now telling me that RC2 won't ship until the end of September, not September 15th as previously planned. On the other hand, if RC2 is of high enough quality, Microsoft could easily RTM the product within weeks of RC2's release.

A spokeswoman for Microsoft said that the delay was based on feedback from beta testers, while White remarked that any problems with current builds of Windows 2000 are "nothing significant.