A couple of Microsoft terms and acronyms explained.

Here is a list with some common terms and acronyms used for pre-release builds of Windows, Updates or which are used during the development process of software.

BBT Binary Profile Feedback Optimization framework (Basic Block Tools (BBT)): BBT is a suite of optimization tools designed to help reduce the working-set requirements for a Win32 application by applying advanced static analysis and code layout heuristics, and integrating profile data gathered from monitoring the program execution flow. In addition, BBT rearranges static data and resources sections for additional paging reduction. Another meaning for BBT is “Black Box Testing”.
BVT Build Verification Test (often called smoke tests): A very small set of tests that check whether the app itself is worth even looking at. BVTs for Notepad would be something like “Launch, type a sentence, save, close”. A quote from a MS developer: If BVTs fail you don’t even want to sync your enlistment because things are so badly hosed just grabbing that version of the source might format your hard drive. The content of these tests is tightly controlled and doesn’t change very often.
CPP Customer Preview Program
CTP Community Technology Preview (first used for Vista build 5219 (Jan 05 CTP))
DNSRV .NET (DotNet) Server (early name for Windows Server 2003)
EBS Essential Business Server
EDW* External Developer Workstation*
Escrow* Builds which become milestones (usually RC or RTM), because they don’t have any serious bugs (“showstoppers”).
Exit Criteria A set of tests that check whether important aspects of a particular feature work correctly. These are defined by the feature team and should be recorded in the spec. The name reflects their meaning: they must be passing completely in order to exit the milestone. Exit criteria for a program like Microsoft Paint would likely include tests that each of the tools in the toolbox function correctly in a few of the most common scenarios. These tests are completely under the control of the feature team.
FBL Feature build lab, used during the development of Windows 7
FVT Feature Verification Tests: Per-feature BVTs. A small set of tests that check whether a specific feature is worth even looking at. A program like Microsoft Visio might have separate FVTs for loading/saving, drawing and editing shapes, printing, and so on. FVTs are generally under the control of the feature team.
GA General Availability: Describes the point where all necessary commercialization activities have been completed and the software has been made available to the general market either via the web or physical media.
GDR General Distribution Release, used for Updates and Hotfixes. GDR packages contain only security and critical stability issue fixes.
HSBS Home and Small Business Server (Team)
IDS* Internal Developer Server*
IDW* Internal Developer Workstation*
IDX* Internal Developer Client/Server*
LCTP Limited Community Technology Preview (used for a few very limited, nda-only preview programs)
LDR Limited Distribution Release, used for Updates and Hotfixes. LDR packages contain “other” fixes that have not undergone as extensive testing, and resolve issues that only a fraction of the millions of Windows users might ever encounter.
MMS Mid-Market Server (early name for Essential Business Server)
QFE Quick Fix Engineering, other term for LDR.
QHSV Q Home Server (early name for Windows Home Server)
RC Release Candidate
RDP Rapid Deployment Program (Launch Readiness: Accelerate adoption of Microsoft technologies. Develop public references to support marketing efforts.)
RTM Release To Manufacturing: Used to indicate that the software has met a defined quality level and is ready for mass distribution either by electronic means or by physical media.
RTW Release To Web: Identical to RTM except that no physical media are produced, uses the Internet for distribution.
SBS Small Business Server
Self host Builds that pass all Exit Criteria tests (and thus work well enough to be demoed and dogfooded). Means a build is ready for in-depth testing.
Self test Builds that pass BVTs and FVTs (and so are usable for testing). Means is testable, the devs have run their set of initial tests.
Self toast Builds that fail with BVTs (that is, your computer is toast if you install them).
Sign-off Means QA (Quality Assurance) acknowledges that the feature/product can be shipped.
TAP Technology Adoption Program (Product Readiness: Obtain deep-dive feedback, early and throughout the development cycle. Ensure new technology meets the needs of the marketplace.)
TP Technical Preview
VBL Virtual build lab, used during the development of Windows Vista after the “Longhorn reset”. VBLs replaced the Labs used during the development of Longhorn (and earlier NT-based versions).
WHS Windows Home Server
WSSG Windows Server Solutions Group
WSUS Windows Server Update Services

*These acronyms/terms have been explaned here: What does IDS/IDW mean and what are Escrow builds?

If you have any corrections or anything to add, please let me know.

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