Customer Momentum Grows for Active Directory

REDMOND, Wash., May 24, 2001 — With the launch of Windows 2000 Server in early 2000, Microsoft introduced a technology called Active Directory. Since then, its Microsofts customers who have been active — in adopting the directory service, a key component of the operating system.

Previously conducted independent research found that 10-15 percent of Windows 2000 customers deployed Active Directory in the first year, a figure close to Microsoft’s expectations. Now, according to new research commissioned by Microsoft, 75 percent of Windows 2000 users surveyed either have deployed, are currently deploying, or are in the planning/design phase of their Active Directory infrastructure, indicating growing momentum from earlier reports.

Among medium-size businesses surveyed, 72 percent of Windows 2000 customers have deployed, are currently deploying, or are in the planning/design phase of their AD infrastructure.

Both findings are consistent with Microsoft’s expectations of
“early adopters”
“mainstream adopters.”

“This latest research confirms the growing momentum weve seen for Active Directory as more and more customers are exposed to the technology,”
said Peter Houston, Active Directory group program manager at Microsoft.
“Were very pleased at the pace and enthusiasm with which customers are moving to cut their costs and boost the efficiency of their network management using Active Directory.”

The statistics are also consistent with Microsofts expectation that the greatest initial interest in Active Directory would come from
“early adopters,”
who would demonstrate its robustness and business value, Houston added.

“Next, we expect to see our mainstream customers begin their deployment cycles over the next year or so, as they are able to learn from the experiences of the early adopters,”
he said.

To further improve the planning and deployment cycle for customers using Active Directory, Microsoft will release a second generation of planning and deployment guides for Active Directory on June 17 at the Microsoft TechEd 2001 conference for information technology (IT) professionals in Atlanta.

“The new guides are designed to be highly prescriptive and to take the guesswork out of the process by showing customers how to design and deploy an Active Directory structure, based on the experience and learning of early adopters,”
said Houston.
“Customers using prescriptive approaches found that they significantly cut the planning and deployment time for Active Directory.”

The new guides represent the latest step in a growing industry infrastructure that facilitates Active Directory deployment and use. Already, 40 books on Active Directory are on bookstore shelves, independent software vendors are releasing mainstream business applications that make specific use of Active Directory — with the number of such applications expected to triple by years end — and more than 1 million IT professionals, working in corporate IT departments and solution-provider companies worldwide, have been trained in Active Directory.

Customers Praise Active Directory Experience

TELUS Corporation, Canadas second-largest telecommunications company, with 22,000 employees across five provinces, deployed Active Directory to collapse its several, distinct network domains into a central corporate structure. This enabled the company to reduce the costs and complexity of managing multiple directory services, according to Erika Tischer, project manager for Windows 2000 at TELUS.

Oregon State University saw other benefits.
“Our support desk calls have diminished by 35 to 40 percent since implementing Windows 2000 with Active Directory,”
said Greg Scott, information services manager for Oregon State Universitys College of Business, which has 5,500 students, administrators and faculty.

“Active Directory allows us to manage user desktops more effectively, eliminating 50 percent of the self-inflicted wounds that come about when users accidentally change system settings,”
Scott said.
“As we get more experience with Active Directory, were using it in more sophisticated ways — for example, for workflow applications that automatically route expense forms without the sender needing to know where the form should go.”

“Implementing Active Directory was uneventful and, after the planning, took very little time,”
he added. Because of the high level of the tools that Microsoft provides, we write very little code and gain tremendous value.

UNX, an online broker that has traded more than US$12 billion in principal and specializes in high-quality execution for single stocks and entire portfolios, determined that Active Directory and Windows 2000 provided a better solution than Solaris, versions of Linux, NT 4.0 and Windows 2000 alone, according to Jay Hatho, director of technology for UNX. The centralized management provided by Active Directory resulted in a 25-percent savings in IT support costs for UNX. In addition, because Active Directory natively provides LDAP support, UNX was able to rapidly develop its extranet applications.

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