Microsoft officials said they cut the feature due to quality concerns, but the functionality is still "something we plan to deliver to our customers in the future," according to a company spokeswoman.
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"From the beginning, we have made it clear that the top priority for Windows Vista is quality," the company spokeswoman said in an e-mailed statement. "While PC to PC synch is a great feature that improves productivity and collaboration we don't have it at the quality level our customers demand. As a result the decision was made to remove it from Windows Vista. This is part of the normal beta process as we constantly evaluate, improve and fine tune the features of Windows Vista.
It would be gratuitous to note at this point that my new Mac can do this already, so I won't mention that. For those who are still interested in Windows Vista, the public beta version is now available for download from Microsoft. For those of you who have come to believe that Microsoft's latest effort is a year (or more) late and a feature (or more) short, you can go elsewhere to find an OS which actually is ready for prime time.