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SQL Server 2005 at Long Last

After years of delays, Microsoft formally launched SQL Server 2005 today, along with Visual Studio 2005 and BizTalk Server 2006. Microsoft product launches are frequently about partner announcements and product momentum. This time that's even more true than usual. With five years to find out what's coming in SQL Server 2005 and hundreds of thousands of beta copies in the testing pipeline, SQL Server is hardly a mystery to anyone who wanted to know what the features would be.

Microsoft says more than 1,500 partners worldwide plan to ship solutions based on SQL Server 2005. A group called the Visual Studio Industry Partner program has 235 members shipping 800 products that extend developer offerings. Microsoft also says some 600 partners are preparing for the release of BizTalk next year with one offering or another.

Microsoft posted nearly 100 partner announcements here.

For any ISVs out there looking for ways to jump on this bandwagon, check out Becky Nagel's story about the Front Runner program.

Patch Tuesday Again
Anybody else notice that Microsoft has a real boom-bust cycle with security patches? On Thursday, Microsoft notified users that it will probably post one new security bulletin tomorrow for its monthly Patch Tuesday. For the record, the patch will fix a critical flaw in Windows. Last month, the company pumped out nine security bulletins. In September, zero. In August, six. To recap: Aug = 6, September = 0, October = 9, November = 1 (tentative). Should we just move to an every-other-month schedule with emergency releases in between for critical patches? Let me know at [email protected] if the monthly patch schedule is working for you.

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Bolstering Windows Live
Within two days of launching Windows Live, Microsoft began padding the service with technology gained through acquisition. Microsoft unveiled the set of supplemental online services for Windows users last Tuesday. The original set of services included personalized Web spaces, Web-based e-mail accounts, instant messaging, online favorites, a virus removal service and PC maintenance services. On Thursday, Microsoft added Folder Share. The service, acquired from Austin, Texas-based ByteTaxi Inc., provides for file synchronization and remote file access.

One Reader's Take on Live
Speaking of Microsoft's Live services, last week I asked whether you saw opportunities or threats in the Office Live services that Microsoft will begin testing next year. Hank Gill, CTO and co-owner of HR-ease in Tampa, Fla., sees opportunities for his company in the service:

"This would be a terrific idea if they can pull it off. I work with various groups in Tampa, which create short term or temporary entities for six months to a year and they need access to the best technology for short periods of time.

"This could really fill the niche. This will keep people within the Microsoft brand so I don't have to support Linux and OpenOffice!"

Let me know what you think at [email protected].

Posted by Scott Bekker on November 07, 2005