March 01, 2001, 10:47 AM — Over the next few newsletters, we'll look back at the year 2000 and highlight the important developments in Windows networking, then peer into the crystal ball and attempt to foretell 2001's major news events.
One of the biggest stories of the year was also the first big story of the year -- there were virtually no Y2K bug disasters to report on Jan. 1, 2000. (Interestingly enough, though, Jan. 1, 2001 brought date-related problems to 7-Eleven's credit card acceptance system as well as Norway's national railroad system.)
February brought the launch of Windows 2000, which in retrospect is probably the most robust operating system to come out of Redmond, Wash., since DOS 3.1. Nevertheless, the year ended with most people just beginning to implement (or planning to implement) the server operating system, while stepping up rollouts of the desktop version, Windows 2000 Professional.
The other big news for Microsoft was its spectacular lack of success in the various legal proceedings during the year. Besides Judge Jackson's ruling to split the company in two as a result of the Department of Justice's antitrust suit, there were settlements or loses in at least two other anticompetition suits -- one brought by Caldera (settlement not announced) and the other by Bristol Technologies ($4.7 million). Additionally, Microsoft temporary employees successfully brought a class-action suit that gained them more equivalent standing with full-time employees. This also forced Microsoft to redefine the meaning of "temporary" as regards employment. As the year ended, Bill Gates and friends were going back to court, this time for racial discrimination in employment practices.
All in all, it was not a great year for the software giant, since even the technically superior Windows 2000 was selling much slower than had been projected.
But that wasn't all the news from the year 2000. More in the next newsletter.