Ford takes Microsoft Content Management Server road

Ford Motor Company has signed a deal to use Microsoft's Content Management Server 2001 as the content management solution for its...

Ford Motor Company has signed a deal to use Microsoft's Content Management Server 2001 as the content management solution for its Web site.

Content Management Server, which Microsoft acquired from EnCompass Labs in May last year, features Web site development and management capabilities, template-based content publishing, content workflow, scheduling and archiving and dynamic content delivery.

At its TechEd conference in New Orleans next week, Microsoft will show off tighter integration between Content Management Server and its SharePoint through an Integration Pack, which will be downloadable from the Microsoft Developers Network. The Integration pack is expected to be available at the end of April.

"The tighter integration makes it easier to share documents with SharePoint right out of the box, and also results in improved document management capabilities and [the ability] to publish those documents to a Web site," said Chris Ramsey, a product manager on Microsoft's Content Management Server team.

Microsoft officials said they plan to release the .net version of the Content Management Server some time in the second half of this year.

As part of the deal, Ford contracted with Microsoft's Consulting Services (MCS) to come up with an implementation as well as a roadmap for the site. Together the two companies were able to rebuild in 13 weeks.

Ford decided on Microsoft's product because it scaled better than others they considered and for several of its ease-of-use features, company officials said.

Company officials added they have increased site reliability and availability to 100% uptime and have decreased exiting hardware requirements by about 60%.

In related news, Microsoft also announced that its Xbox video game system business has implemented the Content Management Server 2001 for building, managing, and deploying its Web site.

"We need the ability to keep the site fresh with new content about Xbox, which is key to drawing new and repeat visitors to We think [Content] Management Server makes this process very efficient and quick because the content producers publish their own content," said Don Hall, director of Xbox at Microsoft.

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