ISVs and Hosters using Windows should be interested in new release from Microsoft:
Beta Releases: Windows-based Hosting 4.5 and Windows-based Hosting for Applications 1.5
New in This Release
The Microsoft Solution for Windows-based Hosting version 4.5 improves on previous versions of the solution by introducing a number of new features and technologies. Some of the more significant enhancements are:
- Windows Server 2003 R2 - The infrastructure components of the solution now run on Windows Server 2003 R2, which extends the Windows Server 2003 operating system in important ways. Web platform features include support for .NET framework 2.0 and ASP.NET 2.0 applications as well as 64-bit support for Internet Information Services (IIS) 6.0. In addition, Windows Server 2003 R2 provides:
- Improved identity and access management.
- Better control over storage setup and lower management costs due to improved storage management features.
- Interoperability with UNIX-based systems, including password synchronization.
- A new licensing model that allows customers to get more value out of server virtualization.
- SQL Server 2005 -The solution incorporates fundamental advancements in database technology and security with SQL Server 2005. When compared with SQL Server 2000, the latest version of the comprehensive database platform of the solution provides:
- Up to 35 percent faster transaction processing, including improved response times on queries.
- Higher availability for mission critical applications and five times faster failover.
- Up to 40 percent faster development environment through Visual Studio and .NET integration.
- Improved analysis and calculation capabilities that allow developers to provide new services.
- Improved reporting capabilities as well as the power to create ad hoc reports in multiple formats.
- New features to easily support service offerings differentiated by additional capabilities rather than just database size and quantity.
- Support for 64-bit platforms so service providers can scale servers to any client's needs.
- SQL Server Hosting Toolkit - This tool enables hosters to more easily deploy SQL Server databases for customers.
- ASP.NET 2.0 support - ASP.NET 2.0 encapsulates common Web tasks into application services and controls that you can easily reuse across Web sites. With these basic building blocks, ASP.NET 2.0 allows developers to write up to 70 percent less code for faster development of rich Web sites and applications. It also introduces a number of features for implementing high-performance Web solutions.
- ASP.NET AJAX framework support - Hosters can now offer developers a richer environment on which to build interaction-rich, cross-browser Web applications.
- Support for 64-bit computing - As the majority of new server shipments today contain 64-bit processing power, the solution has also moved forward with 64-bit computing support. The solution has been tested with and supports 64-bit versions of Windows Server 2003 R2 and SQL Server 2005.
- Support for Windows SharePoint Service version 3.0 - This version introduces improved administrative tools including a server farm-based Central Administration user interface. Also new in this release are the availability of 40 new application templates which hosters can use to enhance service offerings for small to medium business customers.