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Rumor: Microsoft ‘Midori’ Project May Replace Windows OS

Scary_windows_sanjy_flickrWhat’s Microsoft without the Windows? While the next version of Windows will no doubt be the familiar desktop that still dominates the market, the future may hold something entirely different.

If the rumors are to be believed, Microsoft is hard at work on a project code-named Midori, which will pare down the operating system and might one day replace Windows.

Recently revealed documentation purportedly shows that Midori, while still in the very early stages, appears to be Microsoft’s answer to both “cloud computing” and virtualization. That is, rather than tying the OS directly to hardware, Midori would be available across networks or even possibly the web.

The SD Times claims to have viewed internal Microsoft documents that outline Midori’s proposed design which is, according to the site, “internet-centric and predicated on the prevalence of connected systems.”

Of course Microsoft Research has all sorts of projects under its roof and many will never see the light of day. But longtime Microsoft watcher Mary Jo Foley looked into Midori earlier this year and concluded that Midori has more legs than some of its Microsoft Research brethren.

Although Midori is “currently in ‘incubation,’” Foley wrote, “it’s likely to be launched sooner than a typical Microsoft Research project.” Of course she went on to say that Midori was unlikely to arrive in time to replace Windows 7 or even Windows 8.

So will Microsoft abandon Windows and start over, rewriting an OS from the ground up? Apple did something similar (though perhaps less radical) when it released OS X and it has proved a very healthy move for the company. Will Microsoft attempt the same sort of move? Let us know what you think.

[via BBC, photo by Sanj@y, Flickr]

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