Microsoft has chosen Digital's Alpha architecture as the hardware platform to test out its first implementation of a 64-bit version of Windows NT, designed for business use. Although no date has been set for the operating system's release, it is expected to come out at the same time as the next overhaul of the Windows NT OS, codenamed Cairo. An upgrade from the present version 3.51 to 4.0 is expected before this. Phil Curran, Digital's director of product marketing for the Asia Pacific, said: 'Microsoft's decision to build a 64-bit version of Windows NT around the Alpha architecture is great news for our customers. 'They will be able to make a seamless transition from the current Windows NT, which is already supported on the Alpha platform, to 64-bit Windows NT.' The move follows on the Alliance for Enterprise Computing that Digital and Microsoft began a year ago. Much of the systems testing and engineering will involve Digital so the new OS will run on its Alpha workstations, including the new AlphaServer 4100.