A HailStorm is coming

Last week Microsoft unveiled the first of its .Net technology packages, called " HailStorm. " Essentially it’s a directory-enabled, XML-designed method of keeping users’ personal information available throughout a network, so that it’s available wherever and whenever its needed.

As Microsoft defined it:

" HailStorm is designed to place individuals at the center of their computing experience and take control over the technology in their lives and better protect the privacy of their personal information. HailStorm services will allow unprecedented collaboration and integration between the users' devices, their software and their personal data. With HailStorm, users will have even greater and more specific control over what people, businesses and technologies have access to their personal information. "

Essentially, though, what Microsoft is talking about is directory-enabling applications and services -- having the apps and services read preferences, options and personal information from a central directory.

But what’s really fascinating is that the entire presentation kicking off HailStorm was done without the word " directory " being used! Microsoft Passport was mentioned (and that’s a directory of sorts), and eventually Passport might be subsumed into Active Directory (just as Microsoft Metadirectory Services might), but not yet.

Someday Microsoft will realize the power of the directory and just how much Active Directory can do to further the aim of " Windows Everywhere, " but evidently that day hasn’t come just yet.

This story, "A HailStorm is coming " was originally published by Network World.

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