BizTalk Server for Windows Server 2008 not till 2009

When Microsoft launched Windows Server 2008 in February, company officials shared timetables for how long it might take the company to make available compatible versions of its various business applications. But it wasn't until this week, the company finally shared information on how and when it will release a Windows-Server-2008-compatible version of its integration server, BizTalk Server.

When Microsoft launched Windows Server 2008 in February, company officials shared timetables for how long it might take the company to make available compatible versions of its various business applications. But it wasn't until this week, the company finally shared information on how and when it will release a Windows-Server-2008-compatible version of its integration server, BizTalk Server.

Users had been wondering when and whether Microsoft might port BizTalk Server 2006 to its Windows Server 2008 platform. On April 23, Microsoft Connected Systems Division Director of Product Management Steve Martin blogged that Microsoft will release an updated version of BizTalk some time in the first half of 2009 for Windows Server 2008. That release will be called BizTalk Server 2006 Release (R) 3.

Microsoft is limiting the feature changes it is making to BizTalk for the R3 release, Martin blogged. The included changes will include UDDI 3.0 support; enhanced support for B2B protocols like SWIFT and EDI; and new and updated adapters for business apps and databases. Martin blogged:

"To ensure existing BTS (BizTalk Server) applications continue to run without changes, we are taking an incremental approach and limiting the changes to the items listed above. Because this release build on existing bits, the name of this release will be BizTalk Server 2006 R3. Refreshing the bits (instead of applying a large Service Pack) provides for the best update experience.  You should expect to see a CTP (Community Technology Preview) of BizTalk Server 2006 R3 later this year (with an RTM planned in H1 CY09)."

One Microsoft partner said BizTalk isn't the only Microsoft application lagging well behind Windows Server 2008.

"System Center Mobile Device Manager 2008 just released on April 1 2008, but it was developed and tested ONLY on a W2K3 platform and domain (plus it needs WINS too)," said Scott Hill, CIO of RightSize IT, a Microsoft Gold reseller partner based in Texas. "It will not be supported on a W2K8 platform or 'native mode' domain until the Service Pack at year end.

"Another application has the same issues – OCS (Office Communication Server)2007. That team is now stating that they will not have a fix this month as discussed in January, but are delaying until that service pack in December 2008," Hill said.

Any other users running into other Windows Server 2008 compatibility snags with Microsoft and/or third-party apps?