Microsoft Brands, Previews Portal Server
- By Scott Bekker
’s forthcoming portal server, formerly
codenamed “Tahoe”, has reached Release Candidate 1 status. Microsoft also
announced the product will be branded as
“SharePoint Portal Server” when it hits the market this spring.
“SharePoint Portal Server is able to search and index a
variety of information services,” says Trina Seinfeld, product manager for
SharePoint Portal Server. Adminstrators can set SharePoint Portal to cull
information from Office Applications, as well as enterprise servers like SQL
Server, Exchange, and Lotus Notes.
Microsoft says that the server is intended to ease the
creation of portals, so enterprises can better relay information to workers. Microsoft
has deployed SharePoint Portal in-house to maintain its intranet and
dynamically update information, but Seinfeld says that its JDP partners are
using the server for diverse tasks like research sharing, legal work, and purchase
To construct a portal, adminstrators set up templates
or “digital dashboards,” embedded with “Web Parts.” Web Parts are HTML and
XML-based objects for adding information to the site. “You can create web parts
to access any type of information,” Seinfeld says.
When SharePoint Portal was first announced it was
billed as Microsoft’s entry into the document management arena, but, as its
name suggests, it is now marketed as a portal server. Seinfeld says that its document
management features should not be overlooked. “We view document management as a
value add in a portal solution,” she says.
SharePoint Portal is one member of the SharePoint
family of brands. A second product, SharePoint Team Services, will ship with
Microsoft’s upcoming Office 10 release. Formerly know as Office Extensions, SharePoint
Team Services will offer document sharing and web publishing for workgroups and
Notably absent from the branding announcement was
mention of the .NET initiative. “There are a lot of .NET core technologies
integrated in the shipping product,” Seinfeld says. She says that Sharepoint
Portal was architected before .NET was announced, so some of the technologies
were not integrated into the current product, but future versions will be fully
compliant with the .NET intiative.
The SharePoint Portal Release candidate is available
for download at http://www.microsoft.com/sharepoint/.- Christopher McConnell
Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.