Microsoft, Softricity Team Up on Web Services

The pair announced an agreement to promote Softricity's solution for managing Windows applications as Web services.

Microsoft Corp. and Softricity Inc. Tuesday announced an agreement to promote Softricitys solution for managing Windows applications as Web services.

Under the agreement, the companies will promote Softricitys SoftGrid as an enabling technology to bring existing applications onto the .Net platform as XML Web services over corporate networks, the companies said.

Boston-based Softricitys SoftGrid enables users to deliver applications as network services. Under the agreement, Microsoft will bring its .Net technologies to the SoftGrid platform to automate things like application discovery and provisioning and user authentication through Microsoft Passport to applications outside the firewall, SoftGrid officials said.

Essentially, the SoftGrid system works by delivering portions of application code over the network to the Windows applications, said David Greschler, Softricitys co-founder and executive vice president of marketing and strategy.

This is particularly key in terminal-based applications, especially in terminal server farms or clusters, he said. Because it is delivered in portions, the application runs in a protected barrier, which Softricity calls SystemGuard. With SystemGuard, users can run applications that might normally conflict with each other if run at the same time, or run multiple versions of the same products, Greschler said.

Greschler said his companys agreement to help companies manage their existing applications as Web services is beneficial to both Microsoft and Softricity. First off, both companies will sell the solution. And it gives Microsoft the opportunity to "offer a total solution for the enterprise."

Greschler said Microsoft will not only be able to offer its Visual Studio .Net development environment for building new applications and Web services, but also will be able to promote the SoftGrid solution as a way to "take existing Windows applications to the .Net and Web services world."