October 12, 2006 2:55 PM PDT
Microsoft puts key security under Windows umbrella
The software maker said it will merge its security response unit, its Trustworthy Computing effort, and an engineering excellence product in one group to be led by Scott Charney. That unit will be a part of the Windows Core Operating System Division, now headed by Jon DeVaan.
By moving the unit inside Windows, DeVaan said Microsoft believes it can "become more effective and efficient at understanding what's going on with security."
"I think you'll see Microsoft being able to be more agile," he said.
In addition, Microsoft is creating four units that will be part of DeVaan's Core Operating System unit. One is the Windows Core System group, which will be charged with coming up with a single development plan for Windows. It will be led by three Microsoft executives, including Ben Fathi, who only recently took over for Mike Nash as head of the Security Technology unit.
A Windows engineering system and service unit will be headed by Wael Bahaa-El Din. The Windows Core Architecture Team will be led by Richard Ward, while a PC Hardware unit will be directed by Jawad Khaki and will be responsible for collaboration with computer makers and other hardware manufacturers.
Although the Trustworthy Computing unit will move inside of the Windows development effort, DeVaan said it will still be responsible for security and reliability efforts across the company and for industrywide initiatives.
The changes will go into effect after Windows Vista development is finished later this year, DeVaan said. The operating system update is expected to be released to large businesses in November and broadly available in January.
"It is going to take effect after Vista RTMs (releases to manufacturing)," DeVaan said Thursday. "We are keeping the team well-focused on Vista."
The move is the latest reverberation from a companywide reorganization that began last year. As part of that shift, which reordered operations into three units, Microsoft named its sales chief, Kevin Johnson, to head a new unit combining Windows and Windows Live. At the same time, it said that longtime Windows unit head Jim Allchin would retire after finishing work on Windows Vista.
In March, Microsoft moved Office executive Steven Sinofsky to the Windows side, where he is responsible for all development efforts for the operating system, reporting to Johnson.
Then, in August, Microsoft announced that it was moving DeVaan to head Windows engineering efforts and that Brian Valentine would move to a new post at the company. Valentine subsequently announced plans to leave Microsoft and join Amazon.com. DeVaan reports to Johnson.