At the IT Forum 2005 conference in Barcelona on Tuesday, Microsoft elaborated on its plans to switch to 64bit computing. Seemingly, when we get Microsoft's Windows Vista OS next year, there will be both 32bit and 64bit versions. But remember that Microsoft said that Vista was to be a "wave of technologies" as opposed to a single product? Well, there will be a Release 2 of Vista, scheduled for 2009, and it will be 64bit-only, according to Bob Muglia, senior vice-president of Microsoft's servers and tools business. The company also outlined plans to provide 'Centro' - a set of server software aimed at mid-size businesses - which will be available only in a 64bit version when it comes out around 2007. Microsoft believes that it is working well with industry to facilitate the switch to 64bit computing.

"Consistency and delivery: that's really the theme of what we are talking about today at IT Forum. We're focusing on providing you with a long-term view of where the industry is going - things like 64bit - while at the same time delivering on the commitments that we have," Muglia said.