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SMS 2003 to Launch Next Month

Microsoft will formally launch its long-awaited Systems Management Server 2003 next month at an IT event in Europe.

SMS 2003 will debut during Microsoft IT Forum 2003, Nov. 11-14. The focus of the second annual show is management and messaging. About 3,000 European IT professionals are expected at this year's event in Copenhagen, Denmark.

SMS 2003 is Microsoft's change and configuration management product for Windows. Changes to SMS 2003 include simplified application deployment, improved asset management, new security patch management, mobile support for laptops and tighter integration with Windows Management Services.

The kickoff keynote on Nov. 11 will be delivered by Kirill Tatarinov, the Microsoft executive overseeing Microsoft System Center, SMS, Microsoft Operations Manager and Microsoft Application Center. Microsoft System Center will eventually merge SMS with MOM, but both SMS and MOM are expected to retain distinct identities for several more years.

SMS 2.0 came out in early 1999 and is up to its fifth service pack. As Microsoft's release schedule for SMS 2003 has slipped, the company has delivered additional functionality for SMS 2.0 customers through feature and value packs.

SMS 2003 entered the Release Candidate 1 testing stage in July.

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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