Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Microsoft to preview new email server

Microsoft is set to launch a test version of its Exchange Server on Wednesday, marking the latest development in the technology used by businesses worldwide to run their email systems.

The public beta test version of Exchange Server 2010, as the product is called, is the first of a wave of upgrades to Microsoft programs. The software giant is gearing up for the next release of its successful and profitable Office suite of applications.

Microsoft said the latest Exchange Server can work entirely as an online service. This feature may attract customers looking to save money on hardware and support for their email and messaging systems. The company is gradually moving toward Internet distribution for some of its products to counter threats from Google and other new competitors.

For users, the new Exchange Server offers a few innovations, including the ability to "mute" streams of email, or opt out of conversations of limited interest to the recipient.

The new system also offers a range of tips to avoid embarrassment or wasting time, by warning users before they send mail to large distribution groups, to out-of-office recipients or to people outside the organization. Microsoft hopes the tips will protect clients against information leaks and reduce unnecessary email messages.

It also has a function to transcribe voice messages sent to the computer.

The full public roll-out of Exchange Server 2010 is scheduled for the second half of 2009 while Microsoft's Office 2010 is expected to be available in the first half of 2010.

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