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There will be two general categories of Windows Vista editions, which map closely to the two that exist today for XP...
In Windows Vista, the two categories are Home and Business. In the Home category, Microsoft will create four product editions: Windows Vista Starter Edition, Windows Vista Home Basic Edition, Windows Vista Home Premium Edition, and Windows Vista Ultimate Edition.
In the Business category, there will be three editions: Windows Vista Small Business Edition, Windows Vista Professional Edition, and Windows Vista Enterprise Edition. In all, there are 7 product editions planned for Windows Vista...
says Paul Thurrott [windowsitpro.com]
This might be the start of a nightmare for my organisation's testing team, though. Windows XP Home and Pro had a number of very significant differences; I wonder how much these new editions will vary at the API level?
MS can more competitively price their OS now with these different feature sets. Hopefully they won't price themselves out of the reach of the average users. If done correctly the Ultimate version could be a big draw.
Some of the proposed features like the Cornerstone full volume encryption security would be a nice addition if they can pull it off.