Microsoft Begins Open Beta Test For SNA Server - InformationWeek

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Microsoft Begins Open Beta Test For SNA Server

Microsoft today began an open beta test of Host Integration Server 2000, the successor to SNA Server 4.

Since the release of the original Systems Network Architecture gateway for PC-to-mainframe connectivity in 1992, Microsoft has added client-server and E-commerce capabilities to the product, currently in version 4.

Microsoft's Component Object Model TI technology exposes IBM CICS transactions as COM objects, so applications written in Visual Basic can drive transactions that look up inventory data from a mainframe, for example. "Most people don't know you can drive and integrate a CICS transaction with your Web-commerce solution using SNA Server today," says Tad Parker, a lead product manager at Microsoft. So Microsoft is renaming the product and adding new features that aim for adoption among companies hoping to leverage legacy data in their E-business applications.

Now called Host Integration Server 2000, the upgrade adds features such as bidirectional integration between Microsoft's SQL Server and databases from Oracle and IBM, which replicates changes instead of the entire database. Microsoft has also extended COM TI to support IBM's IMS database management system, which is widely installed in the financial services industry. Microsoft is also adding support for IBM's latest MQSeries 5.1 messaging middleware.

The beta release is available free on CD-ROM from Microsoft. A second beta release is scheduled for midspring, followed by general availability this summer.

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