(Source: WinBeta)
New conference will kick off on May 4 and big things are expected to be in store

First announced last October, buzz is slowly building around Microsoft Corp.'s (MSFT) new "Ignite" conference, which runs May 4 through 8th in Chicago, Ill.  The event follows hot on the heels of Microsoft's annual Build conference, which this year is being held from April 29 to May 1 in San Francisco, Calif.  Speakers at the five day ignite event will include CEO Satya Nadella, new cloud services VP Dave Campbell, and Devices VP Joe Belfiore.

Where as BUILD focuses primarily on developers, information technology professionals are the key target audience of Ignite.  Sessions focus heavily on security, administrative, deployment, mobile device management, and customization.  Windows 10 is expected to be the hot topic at the conference, with big announcements rumored to be in store.

Windows 10 themed sessions include:
  • Overview of Windows 10 for Enterprises
    • Windows 10 brings a wealth of new features and solutions to the enterprise. In this session, we explain the various security, management, and deployment features of Windows 10 along with showing you some of the new end-user features that will not only make your customers more productive but also delight them.
  • Hands-on Windows 10 Enterprise Deployment
    • Want to know how to prepare for Windows 10, or how to upgrade from Windows 7, 8, or 8.1 to Windows 10? Maybe you want to know how to build, customize, and deploy your own Windows 10 image? ...
  • Windows 10 for Mobile Devices: What’s Next
    • Windows 10 is not only for PCs! Do you want to know what is new in Windows 10 for phones and small tablets? ...
  • Building Windows 10 Apps in Microsoft Visual Studio 2015
    • Windows 10 is a unified, developer platform for ALL devices so you can reach the greatest number of customers with your work across phones, tablets, PCs, Xbox, IoT devices, and more. In this lab, see how to use Visual Studio 2015 to build and test a Windows 10 app that runs on multiple devices.
  • "Project Spartan" Overview
    • Windows 10 will feature "Project Spartan" (code name), a new browser that consumers are going to love across all their Windows devices....
  • Black Belt Security with Windows 10
    • Learn why and how you should leverage the Windows 10 security technologies like Device Guard, BitLocker, AppLocker, UAC, Least Privilege and Remote Desktop Restricted Admin -mode...
  • You Are the Password with Windows 10 Biometrics
    • ...with Windows 10 we remove our biometric frameworks dependencies on passwords, address bio sensor costs challenges, and will have biometrics poised for mainstreaming...
Rumor has it that Microsoft is targeting the event for the announcement of its first Windows 10 Release Candidate build (Windows 10 RC1). The RC build (possibly known by the alternative title "Release Preview" (RP)) could potentially be announced by Nadella at his opening keynote at the event on Monday, May 4.

The RC1 build is a critical stage in the windup towards rollout of a new version of Windows to the masses in the consumer and enterprise spaces.  Over the last couple generations we saw:
  • Windows 7: RC1 -- May 1, 2009 ; Release -- Oct. 22, 2009
  • Windows 8: RP -- June 1, 2009 ; Release -- Oct. 30, 2012
The timing of public availability for a potential RC/RP build appears to be on the mark.  However, what's more unusual is that Microsoft appears to be planning a faster turnaround.

Windows 10 launching in the late summer or early fall, according to numerous sources, it's looking like this time Microsoft may deliver the publicly available RC/RP build just a few months before that actual OS launch.  If accurate these reports indicate that Microsoft may be coming in rather hot on the Windows 10 launch, likely due to the ambitious multi-device scope of the planned rollout.

Windows 10 cross platform

Will that spell trouble?  We'll have to wait and see!

You can register for the event here. Day passes to the event are $500 USD; the full session is $2,220 USD (add $500 if you want to go to the Sunday pre-event).  Students can get in for "only" $995 USD.  There's also bulk discounts for groups IT professionals buying multiple passes.

Source: @Wzor [Twitter]

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