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Life beyond Windows 7: Microsoft updates other products

Believe it or not, Microsoft is still developing enterprise products besides Windows 7 and Office 2010. While those two are garnering most of the headlines and attention lately, other Microsoft product teams are still chugging along, rolling out updates and readying new versions

Believe it or not, Microsoft is still developing enterprise products besides Windows 7 and Office 2010. While those two are garnering most of the headlines and attention lately, other Microsoft product teams are still chugging along, rolling out updates and readying new versions.

Here are just a few of the latest updates that have come across my RSS reader:

Dynamics CRM/ERP: Microsoft has changed the support policy for service packs for its Dynamics line (Dynamics CRM, AX, GP, SL and NAV). According to Microsoft's Support site, users will now get "24 months of support for a previous service pack, when a new service pack is released. Previously, when a new service pack was released for these products, Microsoft provided 12 months of support for the previous service pack." Those currently deploying a currently supported Dynamics CRM or ERP service pack will get an additional 12 months of free support. Microsoft also is reactivating support for a number of Dynamics service packs that had expired, but would be grandfathered in under the 24-month policy. There's no change in the dates for extended, paid support for these service packs. Office Communications Server: Microsoft has made licensing changes around the instant-messaging connectivity supported by its Office Communications Server (OCS) product. Microsoft is renaming the Live Communications Server Public IM Connectivity (LCS PIC) license to "Office Communications Server Public IM Connectivity (OCS PIC). Those with certain OCS Client Access Licenses (CALs) will no longer require additional licenses to federate with Windows Live -- but still will require them to federate with AOL and Yahoo. Windows Live Federation offers users the option to add Windows Live Contacts to their Office Communicator contact lists, view presence status and send/receive IMs between the two products. The OCS licensing changes took effect July 1.

Commerce Server: Last we heard about Commerce Server, Microsoft was planning a number of releases -- including the 2009 Commerce Server "Mojave" release and the 2009 R2 "Mojave R2" release. Microsoft is in the final throes of recruiting Technology Adoption Program (TAP) testers who want to check out the private R2 test release. Microsoft released Commerce Server 2009 to manufacturing in March 2009. The R2 release is looking like an early 2010 product, at this point. The Commerce Server team said to expect yet another Commerce Server release in late 2010 or early 2011. No word on what that one will be codenamed and officially designated.

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