Microsoft to deliver new content manager

Microsoft Corp. will ratchet up its push into medium-size businesses by delivering a Standard Edition version of its Content Management Server 2002 by year's end, company officials told InfoWorld on Tuesday.

To be sold largely through the company's network of business partners, the upcoming server is a scaled-back version of the one currently available for enterprises in that it can run on a single-processor server and there will be a 15-user limit.

"We are really designing this for medium (size) businesses that want some of the same benefit from the same Content Management solutions available to large enterprises, but without the large scale requirements. This is an offering both our partners and mid-size users have been looking for for a while," said Trina Seinfeld, product manager for Microsoft's e-business server group, in Redmond, Wash.

Microsoft will conduct a "small, private" beta starting in late September and hopes to deliver the finished version by the end of this year, according to Seinfeld.

Microsoft has designed the upcoming server to make sure it works smoothly with those packaged applications from its business solutions group that are also aimed largely at small and medium-size businesses.

"We have been doing some usability testing with medium-size organizations to make sure that the installation is easy enough for them to use. We are making sure it is targeted towards them in terms of management and administration, although there are specifically no new user interfaces," Seinfeld said.

Microsoft has not set pricing on the upcoming server, but Seinfeld said it will be "priced consistently with other Standard Editions of our e-business servers."

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