Microsoft Corp. on announced Monday that the next generation of Windows servers will be called Windows 2002 Server.

The upgrade to Windows 2000 had shared the code name Whistler along with the desktop versions of Windows that have been dubbed Windows XP Home Edition for consumers, and Windows XP Professional Edition for corporate use, and a 64-bit version.

Windows XP and Windows 2002 both share the same code base, which is based on the Windows NT kernel. Windows 2002 will support 64-bit hardware architectures, according to the Redmond, Wash.-based software giant.

Microsoft recently delivered Beta 2 of Windows 2002 to some 300,000 customers, partners, hardware manufacturers, developers, and other testers and plans at least one more beta testing cycle before the product is released. A Microsoft representative said Windows 2002 now is slated to ship in the second half of 2001, but likely will hit the market after Windows XP is released.