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Microsoft expands Exchange 12 beta programme

Microsoft has greatly expanded the number of beta participants for its new Exchange 12 e-mail server platform.

The expanded access to the beta will also come with updated software since Beta 1 started last December.

This update mainly covers ironed out bugs and not new major features.

Only around 1,500 users had access to the first test release of Exchange 12, but the latest community technology preview (CTP) will reach around 200,000 users, said Microsoft.

Exchange 12 is expected to be commercially available in late 2006 or early 2007.

As with the original Beta 1 of the product, the latest CTP has a continuous data replication feature, which is designed to help users more easily manage their data.

While the CTP will again be designed for both 32-bit and 64-bit working, the final commercial version will only work on 64-bit servers, meaning some users will have to buy new hardware to run it.


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