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Daily Digest: December 22, 2008
Content Control, Compliance, Archiving, E-Discovery, & Data Leak Prevention

Digital Info Security Company Announces Version 6.3 of PolicyBridge Email Compliance Software

Survey of Spam Control Products, and Survey of Archiving Products -- See what others think of these products/services. If you add your own data, we will send you a summary of the findings.

PSS Systems' Atlas 4 Suite Further Reduces Legal Risk and Cost of Data Management
New capabilities unite the enterprise to store and manage less data, proactively control discovery costs, and manage global discovery and privacy

Announcing NorthSeas on VMware
E-mail Archiving Software That Runs Virtually Anywhere

Littler Mendelson Chooses Recommind to Power SharePoint Portal Search  
Comment on Recommind here

Messaging & Collaboration

Intermedia Announces Business Productivity Suite, Only Hosted Bundled Productivity Offering to Include Outlook and OCS 2007
New Offering Reinforces Intermedia's First to Market Reputation

Symantec Announces New Norton Internet Security for Mac
Comprehensive Security Solution Protects Against Online Threats and Identity Theft
Comment on Symantec here

Blog Item(s)

Microsoft's Approach to the Cloud

As we noted in our posting Cloud Computing - A Taxonomy, cloud computing can be delivered in three guises:

  • As Public Services (PSs) hosted in large, multisite data centers, and delivered over the public Internet.
  • As Virtual Private Services (VPSs) hosted in large, multisite, multitenanted data centers, and delivered securely over the public Internet. These VPSs are sometimes referred to as Software as a Service (SaaS).
  • As Private Applications (PAs) hosted in large, multisite, multitenanted data centers, and delivered securely over the public Internet.

Some vendors offer only one type, some two, but only Microsoft offers all three. This is important, and to the extent that Microsoft is able, over time, to employ the same platform for all three, it allows both the easy morphing of PSs into VPSs, and more importantly, the easy morphing of PAs into VPSs, and VPSs into PSs.

This is not the only way in which Microsoft's approach to the cloud is different from other vendors. Microsoft dominates the desktop, and has a growing on-premise server, and on-premise solutions, market share. This, in turn, leads in many organizations to ownership of the definitive internal directory -- Active Directory (AD). This places Microsoft in a unique position to create bridges between an organization's internal IT infrastructure and the "cloud."

This is not an opportunity that Microsoft is wasting. It is on a twofold mission:

  • To allow organizations to utilize their existing ADs for authentication and authorization of users of PAs and VPSs in the cloud. AD Federation is the technical term for this. As I have noted in a series of other postings on identity (see Microsoft Identity Roadmap), Microsoft is a thought leader and has a very complete roadmap in this domain. The offerings identified in this roadmap (both software and services) will have been released and deployed by the end of 2009. Some are already deployed.
  • To create a common .NET framework for applications whether they are hosted on-premise or in the cloud (in any guise). This delivers an incredibly powerful differentiation for Microsoft, and one that it has historically exploited with great effectiveness -- it is only a relatively small step for today's Visual Studio-employing Windows developer to morph into a Windows (Azure) in the cloud developer. This is an advantage that should not be underestimated.

It appears that Microsoft is executing this vision well. We expect Microsoft to establish a dominant position in the PA and VPS hosting space. It will continue to face opposition in the PS space, from the likes of Google, etc. The open question is the extent to which Microsoft can create an impregnable position in the VPS space, in the short term, for derivatives of its mature, on-premise, solution servers. For example:

  • Dynamic CRM Online
  • Exchange Online
  • SharePoint Online
  • Office Communications Online
  • Office Live Meeting

Our expectation is that Microsoft will. ... Nick Shelness



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About Ferris Research

Ferris Research studies messaging, and the control of electronic information. More specifically, we help IT staff evaluate and implement products and services that:

  • Provide messaging and collaborative technologies
  • Archive electronic information
  • Ensure compliance with corporate policy, industry regulations, and laws
  • Facilitate e-discovery, and contain its costs
  • Reduce the dangers of information leaks

Email is the most important type of electronic information that requires control today. Other important types include instant messages, Sharepoint teamspaces, images, voice, video, and miscellaneous desktop files.

We've been in business since 1990--longer than any other analyst firm in our field:

  • Clients include 300 of the world's 1,000 largest organizations, and computer vendors from the largest corporations to small startups
  • While other analysts have come and gone, we've published more than 200 formal reports and 1,100 short bulletins
  • Our news service covers more than 2,000 highly specialized announcements annually
  • We have nine experts in our research team, sharing many decades of experience in our core competencies

In short, our technology and industry depth helps you understand today's products, where they've come from and where they're going.

Have news you want to share with us or product or interest area that you would like us to cover? Send press releases to releases@ferris.com.

Copyright © Ferris Research 2008.


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