45,000 Beta Copies Underscore Anticipation for Exchange 2003

REDMOND, Wash., March 7, 2003 — Microsoft Corp. today announced that in two months of availability, more than 45,000 copies of Exchange Server 2003 Beta 2 have been distributed. Exchange Server 2003 is the next edition of Microsoft® Exchange Server messaging and collaboration software. During 2003, Microsoft will provide customers with a significant update to its end-to-end messaging and collaboration management solution offerings based on major releases of the core products: Exchange Server 2003, Windows®
Server 2003 and
“Outlook® 11,”
the code name for the next version of the e-mail client, which is included in
“Office 11”
(the code name for the next version of Microsoft Office).

“The feedback we have received thus far from our early beta testers, customers in the Exchange Server 2003 Joint Development Program, has been very positive,”
said Kevin McCuistion, director of Exchange marketing, business development and product planning at Microsoft.
“Many have remarked that the combination of infrastructure and productivity improvements in Exchange 2003 will be a tremendous improvement to their IT environments. And as some of them have begun putting the beta into limited production, they are finding that the work needed to upgrade from previous versions is minimal in terms of both time and resources.”

JetBlue Airways serves 20 cities nationwide with a fleet of 40 new Airbus A320 aircraft. It currently has 2,450 Exchange Server 2003 seats deployed and plans to roll out 2,400 more over the next couple months. For its largely mobile work force, JetBlue is deploying Outlook Web Access and Outlook Mobile Access, which ship with Exchange 2003, as well as RPC over HTTP, which helps mobile workers connect
“Outlook 11”
to the Exchange Server in a protected manner without a costly virtual private network (VPN). The enhanced migration tools made the upgrade from Exchange 2000 quick and easy.

“Our implementation of Exchange 2003 has been a win-win in terms of productivity, both for users and administrators,”
said Jeff Cohen, CIO for JetBlue.
“Our users absolutely love the new Outlook Web Access, from the new look and feel to the spell checker. We have found that cached Exchange mode gives the users a much smoother Outlook experience because their Inbox is always synchronized regardless of connection type. That alone has significantly reduced the number of calls to our help desk.”

With site and server consolidation, customers are also looking forward to a significant reduction in total cost of ownership (TCO) with Exchange 2003. The greater number of enhanced migration and deployment tools offered make upgrading from Exchange 2000 and Exchange 5.5 easy and cost-effective.

Italy’s Guardia di Finanza is an inspective police force operating under the Ministry of Economy and Finance. Given the specialized security requirements and disparate nature of its enterprise, Guardia di Finanza decided to upgrade directly from Exchange 5.5 to Exchange 2003. Thus far, it has upgraded 8,000 seats, and there are another 60,000 in the works.

“Despite our initial reservations, we have found the upgrade from Exchange 5.5 to be smooth, efficient and well worth the effort. We are particularly encouraged by the S/MIME support in Outlook Web Access as well as the work done with Internet Security Protocol (IPSec), enabling us to set up a secure VPN,”
said Raffaele Rambaldi, system engineering lead at Guardia di Finanza.
“Availability is critical in our line of work, and eight-node clustering support, in conjunction with Windows Server 2003, gives us high confidence in our messaging system and the scalability to expand beyond our current infrastructure.”

Exchange 2003, the next major release after Exchange 2000, significantly boosts information worker productivity through ubiquitous access to business-critical messaging and calendaring information, along with enhancements in security, manageability, availability and reliability to help further drive down total cost of ownership. Early beta testers are excited about the potential of the forthcoming product for productivity enhancements, because information workers using
“Outlook 11”
will see easier e-mail and calendar management, significantly faster synchronization, and easier access over the Internet. In addition, the new Outlook Web Access client adds important new features such as spell check as well as many of the usability enhancements in
“Outlook 11.”
All of this will help raise productivity while reducing training and support costs. And with built-in wireless access, Exchange 2003 will enable mobile professionals to stay in touch through PDAs and cell phones.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software –any time, any place and on any device.

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