Microsoft Partners Vow Support for Exchange 2003

Microsoft used its Tech Ed 2003 conference in Dallas Monday to launch release candidate 1 (RC1) of its Exchange Server 2003 messaging server, and its partners quickly ponied up products to support it.

Hewlett-Packard, one of Microsoft’s oldest and closest partners, was one of the first out of the gate, proclaiming that its HP ProLiant servers are the platform of choice for Exchange Server 2003. HP said that it can offer customers Exchange 2003 products that have been tested by HP for configuration and performance, adding that its HP OpenView software has Smart Plug-ins for Exchange, providing service-level monitoring of the Exchange infrastructure.

Meanwhile, storage software provider Veritas Software touted a new rapid recovery capability for Exchange environments. Currently, the new capability only supports Exchange 2000 and Windows 2000 environments, though Veritas was quick to note that Exchange 2003 support, including compatibility with the new Windows Server 2003 Volume Shadow Copy Service interface, is planned for later this year.

Veritas Edition for Microsoft Exchange now boasts integration with Veritas NetBackup and Veritas Backup Exec, offering off-host snapshot backup and recovery. The three products are intended to optimize recovery time for Exchange through point-in-time recovery from disk-based snapshots, as well as recovery from archived tape backups in the event of a catastrophic hardware failure or site disaster.

Veritas wasn’t the only one with backup support for Exchange. Computer Associates International said its Unicenter Management for Microsoft Exchange, BrightStor ARCserve Backup and BrightStor Enterprise Backup will all support customers implementing Microsoft Exchange 2003 with monitoring and data protection capabilities.

Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Good Technology also got in on the game, noting that it is collaborating with Microsoft to deliver support for its GoodLink continuous two-way wireless synchronization system for Exchange Server 2003. GoodLink support will allow organizations to access Exchange-based data through a range of handhelds, wireless networks and additional device platforms. The GoodLink wireless information system allows Exchange users to query Web-enabled data sources and get results wirelessly through Exchange and GoodLink.

Four antivirus and antispam firms also reiterated their support for Exchange 2003, capitalizing on a new antispam tool in Exchange and the virus-scanning application protocol interface (VSAPI) 2.5 to integrate their complementary offerings with the product.

San Francisco-based Brightmail said its Anti-Spam Enterprise Edition now supports Exchange 2003, and provides better filtering with fewer false positives.

Not to be left out, Symantec unveiled Symantec Mail Security for Microsoft Exchange, an integrated mail security package consisting of content filtering, spam prevention and anti-virus protection. Formerly known as Symantec AntiVirus/Filtering for Microsoft Exchange, the product supports all third-party DNS-based Real-time Blacklists (RBLs), filtering rules which utilize the company’s patented Dynamic Document Review (DDR) heuristic technology to automatically block objectionable content, and enhanced virus protection which purges mass mailer worms before they reach end users and offers a proactive outbreak feature which detects virus outbreaks in the early stages and automatically quarantines suspicious messages.

GFI said its entire product range — including GFI MailSecurity (email content security and antivirus protection), GFI MailEssentials (server-based antispam) and GFI FAXmaker (fax server software) — now supports Exchange Server 2003.

Finally, F-Secure said the latest version of its F-Secure Anti-Virus for Microsoft Exchange now supports Exchange 2003, coupling multiple scanning engines with automatic update services to protect networks against viruses, malware and spyware. The product also offers content filtering, outbreak management, reporting and alerting functions.