Microsoft Sets Launch Date for SQL Server 2005

Microsoft announces at Tech Ed that it will hold an event Nov. 7 to launch SQL Server 2005, as well as Visual Studio 2005 and BizTalk Server 2006.

ORLANDO, Fla.—Microsoft Corp. will formally launch its long-awaited SQL Server 2005 database products, along with Visual Studio 2005 and BizTalk Server 2006, on Nov. 7.

Speaking at the Microsoft Tech Ed conference here, Paul Flessner, senior vice president of server applications, said the company plans to hold an event to launch the three products in November.

Flessner also made what he called a "$5 million donation" in pledging to give every Tech Ed attendee a copy of the standard edition of SQL Server 2005.

The release of SQL Server 2005 will be the first major upgrade of the product since 2000.

Meanwhile, Flessner announced the June CTP (Community Technology Preview) of SQL Server 2005, which company sources said is what would have constituted Beta 3 of the product, but in April the company decided not to do a third beta release. In addition, Microsoft is calling this CTP the first public CTP of the technology, although there was an April CTP of SQL Server 2005, but that was available primarily through MSDN (Microsoft Developer Network).

In his Tech Ed speech, Flessner talked about Microsofts Connected Systems vision and focused on the three products to be released in November. He delved into the deep integration between SQL Server 2005 and Visual Studio 2005, including integrated debugging and the embedding of the Common Language Runtime in SQL Server 2005.

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In addition, Flessner demonstrated an RFID system, built on top of the .Net Framework and SQL Server 2005, which could be embedded in or integrated with third-party applications to capture and interpret data from sensors and manage events.

Indeed, Microsoft deployed this RFID infrastructure at the conference. Along with each attendees registration badge, Microsoft issued an RFID tag, and sensors located throughout the Orange County Convention Center here were able to keep track of things like attendance at various sessions and activities, Flessner said.

Though Flessner demonstrated the technology, he said the RFID infrastructure is not yet a product.

"Our RFID solution will allow you a lot of flexibility," he said. "This is a super-important play for us." Flessner added that there is no official time frame for delivery of the technology in product form, but that customers should look for it "in the 2006 time frame."

Meanwhile, Flessner also announced the release of a new CTP of BizTalk Server 2006.

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