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Windows Small Business Server 2003 R2 to Follow General R2 Release

An R2 version of Windows Small Business Server 2003 will follow the R2 release of the other editions of Windows Server 2003 by 60 to 90 days, Microsoft officials said at the company's Worldwide Partner Conference.

The date for the general Windows Server 2003 R2 release is not yet publicly specific. Microsoft continues to offer "later this year" as the target. One purported internal schedule called for an October release, but Microsoft officials declined to confirm the date on the record.

A beta version of R2, which will include Active Directory enhancements, branch office-focused technologies and storage management features, became available in late April. The Small Business version will include SQL Server 2005 Workgroup Edition, patch and update management tools and an increase in mailbox size limits to 75 GB. SQL Server 2005 Workgroup Edition launches with the rest of the SQL Server 2005 product on Nov. 7.

Small Business Server normally takes longer to ship because Microsoft develops it as a package from the base server operating system with several add-ons, such as Exchange and Windows SharePoint Services. The company integrates the products and adds installation wizards to make the package easier for non- administrators to handle.

While Small Business Server can be licensed for environments of up to 75 CALs, Microsoft designed the product for use by organizations with 50 or fewer seats.

About the Author

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

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