Microsoft Update Hosting Solutions

New versions of Hosted Messaging and Collaboration and Windows-based Hosting solutions help hosting providers maximise the benefits of Web 2.0.

Last week at the Microsoft Hosting Summit 2007, Microsoft announced updates to two solutions for hosting service providers: Microsoft Solution for Hosted Messaging and Collaboration (HMC) Version 4.0 and Microsoft Solution for Windows-based Hosting Version 4.5.

The solutions take advantage of new features in the recently launched Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 and Windows SharePoint Services 3.0, two key Microsoft products that improve communications and information sharing and increase worker productivity. With these updates, service providers will have an expanded set of tools along with guidance to help them deliver a complete suite of hosted services to small and midsize businesses (SMBs).

“Hosting providers are at a critical crossroads as the demand for hosted services continues to increase exponentially, particularly from SMBs,” said John Zanni, director of Worldwide Hosting at Microsoft. “Successful hosters need to go beyond traditional hosting and cost-effectively develop and offer value-added services that will help deepen customer relationships and differentiate themselves from the myriad commodity options that currently exist. Microsoft provides the platform, solutions and guidance to help service providers achieve this.”

The new version of Microsoft Solution for Hosted Messaging and Collaboration utilises Exchange Server 2007, the industry’s leading platform for e-mail, calendaring and unified messaging. Exchange Server 2007 helps protect the organisation with built-in technologies that provide high availability, reduce spam and viruses, enable confidential communications, and aid compliance of regulatory or corporate policies. Employees benefit from anywhere access to their e-mail, voice mail, calendars and contacts from a variety of clients and devices. Exchange Server 2007 enables new levels of operational efficiency by optimising hardware, networking resources and features that help make administrators more productive.

In addition to Microsoft Exchange Server 2007, Hosted Messaging and Collaboration also incorporates Microsoft Office Outlook 2007, Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 and Microsoft Windows Mobile 6 to provide a complete messaging and collaboration service delivering the best possible user experience.