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Windows Essential Business Server Hits RTM Status

With RTM milestone met, Windows Essential Business Server is expected become generally available on November 12.

Windows Essential Business Server (EBS) was released to manufacturing (RTM) on Monday, with a general availability launch date scheduled by Microsoft for November 12.

EBS is an all-in-one server stack designed to meet the needs of medium-size businesses. The server bundle, available in two editions, can be configured with support from Microsoft's channel partners.

The Standard Edition of EBS includes Windows Server, Exchange, SQL Server, System Center Essentials, Forefront Security for Exchange and Forefront Threat Management Gateway.

Microsoft's Forefront Threat Management Gateway has been released to manufacturing for the very first time with this ESB release. It replaces Microsoft's ISA firewall product and adds "unified threat management" capabilities. For example, the Threat Management Gateway solution provides network edge security that can support a company's headquarters, as well as its branch offices, according to Microsoft's Forefront TMG blog.

EBS was first shipped as a beta in December of 2006. The product has undergone testing that went "well beyond the typical betas," according to Microsoft's announcement. Customer advisory groups provided a laundry list of likes and dislikes. In addition, the ESB beta project got advice from Microsoft's "most valuable professionals" and top VARs.

The EBS RTM will help bring resources to medium-size organizations with few or no IT support staff. The product is designed to have "baked-in" best practices and enterprise-grade security. It also features fast and easy set-up and migration capabilities, as well as centralized IT administration.

EBS is part of Microsoft's Windows Essential Server Solutions product line, which also includes a small business version. For more information on Windows Essential Business Server, click here.

About the Author

Herb Torrens is an award-winning freelance writer based in Southern California. He managed the MCSP program for a leading computer telephony integrator for more than five years and has worked with numerous solution providers including HP/Compaq, Nortel, and Microsoft in all forms of media.

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