Microsoft to Make Its Midsize Business Pitch

Microsoft is expected to unveil plans for a slew of pending products, from Windows Midmarket Server, to its next-gen CRM and ERP applications, at its business summit this week.

For the past few months, Microsoft Corp. has been turning up the volume on its midmarket plans. On Wednesday, the companys top brass is set to unveil Microsofts comprehensive midmarket product and channel strategy.

While Microsoft officials declined to talk specifics prior to the Wednesday Business Summit, to which the Redmond, Wash., software vendor has invited 300 midsize business customers and their channel partners, some of its planned unveilings are no secret.

Microsoft identifies "midsize customers" as those with more than 25 but fewer than 500 PCs connected to the Internet.

/zimages/6/28571.gifMicrosoft is set to show off a number of Office 12s components at its Professional Developers Conference this month. Click here to read more.

At the summit, according to sources, Microsoft will take the official wraps off what has been described as a midmarket server bundle akin to Windows Small Business Server. That product, tentatively known as Windows Midmarket Server, will include four Microsoft server SKUs, plus Windows Server, in a single offering.

Sources said Microsoft wont ship the Windows Midmarket Server bundle until 2007, however, since the bundle will be built around Longhorn Server, which is due out that same year.

In the interim, Microsoft will continue to push a midmarket promotional bundle that the company introduced this summer.

That Windows Server System offering for midsize users comprises three Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition SKUs (due to be replaced by three Windows Server 2003 R2 SKUs, once that product ships later this year); one Exchange Server 2003 Standard Edition SKU; and one Microsoft Operations Manager (MOM) 2005 Workgroup Edition SKU.

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