Microsoft Releases Second SQL Server 2000 Beta

FRAMINGHAM (04/24/2000) - Microsoft Corp. today announced the second beta release of its SQL Server 2000 database upgrade.

The new version of the company's database server is supposed to be fully Web-enabled, with support for XML technology, and Microsoft said it also offers a new data-mining engine.

The server is part of Microsoft's planned Windows DNA 2000 network architecture, which also includes BizTalk Server 2000, an XML-based tool for business-to-business e-commerce that was released in a "preview version" earlier this month.

Despite its name, SQL Server 2000 is really just a point-release improvement over the current SQL Server 7 database, said Carl Olofson, an analyst at International Data Corp. in Framingham, Massachusetts.

"They've made some functional improvements," Olofson said. For example, the new release should offer better performance, reliability, scalability, business intelligence capabilities and the XML support, he added.

The release of SQL Server 2000 is "on plan with (Microsoft's) intention to achieve a strong competitive position" in the database business, where it's in hot competition with Oracle Corp. and IBM, Olofson said.

Microsoft didn't specify a target date for a final version, but Olofson said he anticipates a midyear release.

In a related matter, Microsoft last week said a beta-test version of SQL Server 2000 for its Windows CE operating system would be available by the end of June.

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