The few bits I've managed to glean about Office 2010 so far have made it seem that SharePoint 2010 is the family member most likely to be tweaked the most. (The rest of the Office 2010 ("Office 14") suite sounds like it will be getting relatively minor updates.)
Exactly what will be changing in SharePoint -- Microsoft's integrated suite of six back-end servers that handle search, content management, collaboration, etc. -- with the next release is still somewhat murky. But at this week's Microsoft TechEd 2009 conference in Los Angeles, a few more details have begun to trickle out, via tweets, blog posts and other channels.
Here's what I've seen/heard so far:
- Groove (the offline/online synchronization tool Microsoft bought when it acquired Groove Networks) is being renamed and repositioned with the upcoming release as "SharePoint Workspace Manager." Update on May 13: Microsoft has confirmed officially the renaming and is saying that SharePoint Workspace Manager and OneNote will be part of the Office 2010 ProPlus SKU. (Microsoft is declining to provide any other information, at this point, on its planned Office 2010 line-up.)
- SharePoint Server 2010 will be 64-bit only and require 64-bit Windows Server 2008 or 64-bit Windows Server 2008 R2 to run. It also will require 64-bit SQL Server 2008 or 64-bit SQL Server 2005.
- SharePoint Server 2010 won't support Internet Explorer 6. From the SharePoint Team blog: SharePoint 2010 will be "targeting standards based browsers (XHTML 1.0 compliant) including Internet Explorer 7, Internet Explorer 8 and Firefox 3.x. running on Windows Operating Systems. In addition we’re planning on an increased level of compatibility with Firefox 3.x and Safari 3.x on non-Windows Operating Systems," according to the SharePoint Team Blog.
- SharePoint 2010 will feature a "Web-enabled Ribbon control" and support greater use of Silverlight controls
- CMIS support will allow interoperability between SharePoint 2010 and other content management systems
- The architecture supposedly won't change as it did between SharePoint Server 2003 to Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007, thus insuring less compatibility issues and a smoother upgrade path (at least in theory)
- There's a new feature, known as "faceted search" coming in the 2010 SharePoint release. No details available yet.
- A new version of FAST Search for SharePoint will be made available at a lower cost. Meanwhile, according to contractor and SharePoint blogger Lars Fastrup (whose blog entry is the source of a lot of this post), "the SharePoint team have scrapped their efforts to make the SharePoint search engine scale beyond 50 million documents in a single index. The argument will be to move to the FAST search engine instead."
Microsoft is taking sign ups for the invitation-only Office 2010 Community Technology Preview (CTP) test program, which kicks off in July, on the "Office the Movie" teaser site.
If you're following along on Twitter, there are two Office the Movie Twitter feeds, but only this one is real. The one which includes a tweet claiming that Microsoft is integrating Facebook and Twitter feeds directly into Word 2010 is a fake feed, Microsoft officials said on May 12. (Microsoft officials aren't denying outright they are integrating these Web 2.0 technologies directly with the next Office. The spokesperson whom I contacted declined to provide any information on any real or rumored Office 2010 features.)
Anyone else have any SharePoint 2010 features they know or are hoping make it into the final product?