Users crave info on Microsoft's Titanium
Attendees at last week's Microsoft Exchange Conference (MEC 2002) in Anaheim,
Calif., pushed the Redmond, Wash., software giant for as much information as
possible on Titanium, the code name for the next version of Microsoft Exchange
Server that's slated to ship next year.
MEC 2002 was one of the first opportunities for network administrators,
developers and other IT professionals to see a preview of the new e-mail and
collaboration environment since it was first disclosed by CEO Steve Ballmer last
In an era of curtailed IT budgets, the potential cost savings of upgrading to
Titanium from Exchange 2000 was highlighted in a conference keynote by Paul
Flessner, senior vice president of the Microsoft .NET Enterprise Server
He said both Titanium and Outlook 11, the code name for a new version of
Microsoft e-mail system, also slated for a 2003 launch, would incorporate new
backup technology that can produce 'a fivefold reduction in servers.' The backup
technology, dubbed Volume Shadow-copy Services (VSS), is designed to reduce and
compress traffic between Exchange and Outlook, Flessner said.
Ballmer has long maintained the Exchange upgrades will be based on customer
feedback. Flessner noted that Microsoft found that a big concern of IT
administrators is the cost and time it currently takes to back up Exchange
servers, which can require up to 500GB. The VSS technology 'allows
administrators to instantly mirror the disk, making it fast and easy to backup,'
according to Microsoft officials.
Developers deploying Titanium will get a new managed API, code named XSO,
which according to Flessner will allow for collaborative links to .NET
applications. For example, XSO can be used to integrate Exchange data and
services, such as e-mail and calendaring into .NET business applications, such
as sales force automation, he said.
Ballmer had said that Titanium will be 'an easily deployed, incremental
upgrade to Exchange 2000, analogous to the move from Exchange 5.0 to Exchange
5.5 in 1997.' Microsoft officials said Titanium states share the same code base
as Exchange 2000, and sought at the conference to diffuse any confusion relating
it to the next generation of Exchange, code-named Kodiak. To further confuse IT
personnel, Kodiak is part of Yukon, the code name for the next release of SQL
Server. Officials concede that Kodiak is several years away from general
For more information and code names, click on http://www.Microsoft.com.
Rich Seeley is Web Editor for Campus Technology.