Microsoft Squashes Longhorn OS Project

A group of Windows enthusiasts that wanted to attempt to bring back features cut out of Vista through a modified version of Longhorn code circa 2004 found out Microsoft didn't take too kindly to it.

Developers from Joejoe.org, the group that started the "Longhorn Reloaded" project, said the Redmond company had sent them a cease and desist letter demanding they kill the project.

"cr1t1cal," the system administrator for the site, said that the notice came after builds of Milestone 1 first appeared on torrent sites and the group's FTP server. He also claimed Microsoft had known about the project "for many months."

"I am just as sorry as you guys are about this, but we got to think about the community as a whole first," he wrote in a message on the Longhorn Reloaded Web site.

Longhorn Reloaded was meant to add back in to the features that Microsoft had taken out of the project in order to speed its eventual release, such as WinFS. It was based on Longhorn build 4074, released to developers at the 2004 WinHEC conference.

Noted Microsoft pundit Mary Jo Foley talked to the group behind the project back in late May when Milestone 1 was first released. She asked one of the lead developers, Jean-Marie Houvenaghel, if they had heard anything from Microsoft's legal teams.

"We haven't currently suffered any threats from Microsoft, maybe because Longhorn is considered abandonware, I don't know," he told Foley "Also I'm [not] 100% sure that they are aware of the LHR situation."

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