Microsoft Exchange Gets New License Model

Exchange 2003 will be released to manufacturing next week, in some customers' hands later this summer.

Microsoft Corp. next week will release its Exchange 2003 messaging server to manufacturing, with new licensing models and no increase in price.

Exchange 2003 will offer both per-user and per-device client access licenses (CAL). Companies can buy a per-user CAL which allows a single user unlimited access to the Exchange server from multiple devices as well as a per-device CAL, which allows an unlimited number of users to access their Exchange mailbox from a single device. This model is intended for companies that have deskless workers at retail stores or on factory floors, said Microsoft officials, in Redmond, Wash.

This replaces the previous license model where a single client license was required as long as the user accessed Exchange from no more than 20 percent of the time from a secondary device, such as a PDA. Anymore than that and the user would require two client licenses.

Client access licenses are priced the same at $67, whether per user or per device.

Exchange 2003s per-server pricing remains the same, $699 per server for Standard Edition and $3,999 per server for Enterprise Edition. However, customers will be able to deploy the Standard Edition of Exchange 2003 in front of the corporate firewall, where the server would typically be used to provide access to Outlook Web Access and Outlook Mobile Access. In Exchange 2000, only the Enterprise Edition could be deployed as a front-end server.

"We have six or seven front-end servers, so well be able to save a significant chunk of change," said Dave Mills, technical lead for Juniper Networks Inc., in Sunnyvale, Calif., which plans to upgrade from Exchange 2000 to 2003.

Exchange 2003 will also support an External Connector license that allows access to the Exchange Server by an unlimited number of non-employees, such as business partners, suppliers and customers, or for universities who provide mailboxes for alumni.

The External Connector license costs $50,000.

Exchange 2003 will be available to customers with enterprise agreements later this summer and generally available later this year, according to MS officials who declined to be more specific about final availability dates.

(Editors Note: This story has been modified since its original posting to correct an error in the pricing of the External Connector license.)