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Microsoft Rolls Out SharePoint 2016 Beta 2

As expected, Microsoft on Wednesday released the second beta of its upcoming SharePoint Server 2016 product.

Beta 2, which can be downloaded through the Microsoft Download Center here, mostly includes refinements to Beta 1 (also known as the "IT preview"), which Microsoft released in August.

"Given where we are in the product cycle, these updates are primarily final touches on existing features, responses to IT Preview customer feedback and improvements to performance and hybrid scenarios," wrote Bill Baer, senior technical product manager for SharePoint, in a blog post announcing the release. "As we continue to drive toward the release of SharePoint Server 2016, we’ll continue to add new capabilities and features."

Among the changes and additions in Beta 2 are:

  • Enhancements to data-loss prevention capabilities
  • Improved support for Microsoft Identity Manager 2016
  • The ability to extend the App Launcher tool to other apps
  • The ability to extend profiles across on-premises or cloud applications

More information about features in Beta 2 is available in this TechNet Library article.

Baer also noted that this new version of SharePoint will be focused on "hybrid experiences," echoing previous Microsoft messaging.

"SharePoint Server 2016 Beta 2 builds upon the infrastructure strengths delivered in [the] IT Preview and introduces new hybrid experiences that enable our customers to take advantage of the possibilities of the cloud," he said.

Microsoft does not appear to have any more public beta releases planned before the final release of SharePoint 2016, which is expected to be in the first quarter of 2016. Microsoft had originally pegged Q2 2016 for the release, but a post attributed to Baer on the SharePoint IT Pro group on Yammer indicated that the date has been moved up to Q1.

"This morning we announced SharePoint Server 2016 Beta 2...which represents our last public preview of SharePoint Server 2016 prior to GA in Q1 CY 2016," the post said.

About the Author

Gladys Rama is the senior site producer for Redmondmag.com, RCPmag.com and MCPmag.com.

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