Microsoft Expands and Updates Microsoft BackOffice Family

SAN JOSE, Calif., Oct. 28, 1996 — Microsoft Corp. today announced that the Microsoft ® BackOffice
family of server applications has been extended to include the Internet technologies formerly code-named
, Microsoft Merchant Server and Microsoft Proxy Server, as well as an updated version of Microsoft Exchange Server. The BackOffice family is now the only line of servers to meet the different needs of corporate customers as well as the specific needs of commercial service providers including Internet service providers (ISPs), public network carriers, cable companies, telephone companies and other content providers. Microsoft will make these products and technologies available in ways that address specific customer needs and channel requirements.

With these additions, the Microsoft BackOffice family uniquely delivers the features customers require to collaboratively create, edit and publish online information, communicate with customers, and sell products and services over the Internet. Built on the Windows NT® Server network operating system, the Microsoft family of BackOffice applications provides Internet and intranet server products that are designed to work independently or together, while extending existing customer systems to the Web.

“Customers require the breadth and depth of integrated products and services for their Internet and intranet deployments that only the Microsoft BackOffice server family provides,”
said Paul Maritz, group vice president at Microsoft.
“The availability of these integrated products allows customers to focus on extending their operational business systems with Internet technologies, unlike the rip-and-replace approach of other vendors.”

Major Upgrade of
Microsoft Exchange Server
Further Embraces and Extends The Internet

The newly updated Microsoft Exchange Server version 4.5, expected to be widely available in Beta by December of 1996, provides the communications and collaboration support required for the Internet and intranet. Based on both Internet and other open standards, it delivers advanced messaging, collaboration, scheduling and groupware capabilities. Additionally, Web developers can build powerful Web-based communications and collaboration applications using the ActiveX scripting and ActiveX component support in version 4.5.

“Microsoft Exchange Server version 4.5 brings together the best of it’s proven strengths in corporate messaging and groupware technologies with the best of Internet technologies,”
said Jim Allchin, Senior Vice President, Desktop and Business Systems Division at Microsoft.

To meet the needs of corporate customers who want to integrate their existing business operations with additional Internet technologies, Microsoft will also make five new servers widely available as part of the BackOffice family: Microsoft Personalization System, Microsoft Content Replication System, Microsoft Conference Server, Microsoft Proxy Server, and Microsoft Merchant Server.

These products, as well as the existing members of the BackOffice family, are available through a broad range of open distribution options, including Microsoft’s Select volume licensing programs: Open, for small and medium-sized organizations and Variable, for large or global companies. These programs allow customers to mix and match the following members of the BackOffice family to create a configuration that best addresses their organization’s needs:

  • Microsoft Exchange Server. The only server that extends powerful messaging and collaboration to the Internet and intranets. Building on SMTP, MIME, MAPI, and X.400 support in version 4.0, the upcoming version 4.5 provides complete open Internet standards support including POP3, HTTP, HTML, NNTP, LDAP, and SSL. Delivering advanced messaging, collaboration, scheduling and groupware, it provides end-user features like rules, filtering, and off-line synchronization not available in
    “Internet standards only”
    systems. It also includes Active Server support, providing a foundation for building Web-based groupware applications.

  • Microsoft Internet Information Server. The only Web server that is tightly integrated with Windows NT Server, allows customers to deploy Web sites within minutes, and provides the most comprehensive platform for building a new generation of Web applications.

  • Microsoft Proxy Server. The easiest way to provide fast and secure Internet access to every desktop in an organization.

  • Microsoft Merchant Server. The only software for selling over the Internet that enables corporations to establish selling sites with minimal development cost, to attract and retain customers through a compelling and secure buying experience, and to produce higher sales through targeted, dynamic sales promotions.

  • Microsoft Personalization System. A complimentary system that works with Microsoft Internet Information Server (IIS) and enables organizations to implement customized customer interactions easily.

  • Microsoft Conference Server. A commercial-grade, scalable server for rich, real-time communications. Microsoft Conference Server also allows users to locate other users while online and facilitates the launching of real-time conferencing applications, including Microsoft NetMeeting
    conferencing software, that support functions such as shared whiteboard, shared application, chat and IP phone applications.

  • Microsoft Content Replication System. A server system that provides organizations that need to publish Web content with a reliable, secure and efficient way to move content across the Web.

  • Microsoft SQL Server


    An enterprise-class database that supports large Internet and intranet Web databases on a low-cost, standard hardware platform.

  • Microsoft Systems Management Server. Provides a framework for managing corporate intranet desktops. Microsoft Systems Management Server provides the integrated inventory, distribution and remote diagnostic services required to create a well-managed distributed computing environment.

  • Microsoft SNA Server. Integrates IBM mainframes and AS/400 systems with the Internet and intranets.

Included in the broader BackOffice family is the Microsoft BackOffice Server, a package containing a subset of these leading server applications, making it easy for customers to acquire key server products with a single purchase. Version 2.5, scheduled to be released to manufacturing this month, has been updated with Internet products and enhanced versions of current products, including Windows NT Server 4.0, IIS 2.0, the FrontPage
Web authoring and management tool version 1.1, Index Server 1.1, Systems Management Server 1.2, SNA Server 3.0, Microsoft SQL Server 6.5 and Microsoft Exchange Server 4.0 , and will now include Microsoft Proxy Server 1.0, making it the premier Internet and intranet suite available. Purchasers of BackOffice Server version 2.5 will receive a free upgrade to Microsoft Exchange Server 4.5 and IIS 3.0 when the products are available.

Bob Guaraldi, president of Valinor Inc., a systems integrator, said,
“The tight integration of the Microsoft BackOffice applications with each other and existing systems, common development environment, and consistent, easy administration give my customers the ability to build the best intranet and Internet solutions while reducing overall cost of ownership.”

New BackOffice Family Suite: Introducing The Commercial Internet System

For commercial service providers, Microsoft will offer the Commercial Internet System. This offering will enable them to provide complete and innovative services to their customers, with seven server offerings, including Microsoft Commercial Internet Mail Server, Microsoft Commercial Internet News Server, Microsoft Membership System, and the following previously discussed servers: Microsoft Content Replication System, Microsoft Personalization System, Microsoft Conference Server and Microsoft Merchant Server. The Microsoft Commercial Internet System is scheduled for release to manufacturing by the end of 1996 and will be available through a commercial service provider-specific distribution channel designed to meet the unique needs of this customer segment.

“Web services are expanding into higher levels of value-added functionality,”
said Dave Foster, general manager of UUNET’s Web Services Business.
“Microsoft Commercial Internet System will be a key element of UUNET’s strategy to provide high-value services, enabled by tools such as Conference Server.”

In addition to Microsoft Personalization System, Microsoft Content Replication System, Microsoft Conference Server and Microsoft Merchant Server, the Microsoft Commercial Internet System includes the following components designed and optimized for the needs of commercial service providers:

  • Microsoft Commercial Internet System Mail Server. An Internet-standards based, commercial-grade server that provides the basic mail functionality, scalability and performance that ISPs and online services require to provide communications services to thousands or millions of customers.

  • Microsoft Commercial Internet System News Server . A commercial-grade, Internet standards-based server for hosting electronic discussion groups.

  • Microsoft Membership System . Provides a scalable, distributed authentication and access control system that enables commercial service providers on the Internet to manage their customer relationships. Microsoft Membership System integrates with a range of Microsoft Internet application servers, providing the foundation needed to build a commercial Internet service.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ
) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Microsoft, BackOffice, Windows NT, NetMeeting and FrontPage are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

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