Microsoft Mulls Price Layers - Page 3

Cigna is running a pilot business-critical application on Windows Server 2003, which is used by 3,000 users.

The company plans to add Server 2003 to its development projects going forward and to ultimately target the workloads it is migrating from Windows NT to the new platform. The company said it expects to make this switch later this year.

ODell said Cigna also sees Server 2003 as an opportunity to reduce the number of servers required to run its business, particularly with its built-in and unique virtualization features such as Component Object Model+ services partitioning and application pooling. These allowed Cigna to run disparate configurations on the same server, and aggregating those resources allowed it to run on fewer, larger servers.

Microsofts Veghte said the company has made other notable improvements with Server 2003, particularly the fact that users will be able to simultaneously run a mixture of NT 4.0, Windows 2000 and 2003.

"I gave the directory team a primary scenario with Server 2003: to be able to run in mixed mode. Whats got to happen is that while we keep innovating, we cant ask them to throw their investments out every three years," Veghte said.

Veghte also addressed speculation about whether there would be another server release when the next Windows client, currently code-named Longhorn, is released in about 18 months. "In general, doing a server release on an 18-month time frame is not something I think is realistic.

"It is very hard to do a server release that represents the customer advancement in an 18-month turn and then go and tell the customers to rev their servers again," Veghte said.

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