Microsoft just announced a new roadmap for the centerpiece of its Web services strategy, BizTalk server, as disclosed in ENT Online. Microsoft has shifted direction with the integration platform several times since its introduction in 2000. The current product is BizTalk 2004, to be followed by a 2006 edition.
"BizTalk Server 2006 looks to be a set of refinements rather than a new direction for the server," says ENT's Scott Bekker. "The 2006 version will also introduce support for Virtual Server 2005 and three products expected to ship this year -- Windows Server 2003 x64 editions, SQL Server 2005 and Visual Studio 2005." The follow-up version (BizTalk 2008?) will be tightly integrated with Microsoft's Longhorn operating system release (Windows 2007?).
There will also be integration with Microsoft's planned "Indigo" infrastructure for building more secure, reliable and transacted services.
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