Not 'Live,' But Lively

Microsoft's other releases include vital business tools.

While Microsoft focused last week on its "Live" hosted applications, this week's releases of several core software products will have more-immediate impact on business-technology managers. SQL Server 2005 database, BizTalk Server 2006 integration server, and Visual Studio 2005 development suite reflect the increasing interdependence of Microsoft's product set for building Windows applications, including Web applications.

One example is that developers now can use Visual Studio's .Net languages, such as C#, to create triggers and stored procedures for SQL Server instead of being restricted to Microsoft's T-SQL, its proprietary version of the SQL query language. Visual Studio 2005 is slated to get a new set of collaborative features that let teams of developers work on interrelated code together, without getting code sequences confused. However, Team Foundation, the server that will enable the collaborative features for distributed teams, won't be available until the first quarter of 2006.

Another sign that Microsoft is acknowledging a more-connected world: The new version of SQL Server will offer improved data extract, transform, and load capabilities for moving data more cleanly from one relational database to another--including databases from other vendors.

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Microsoft Goes Live

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