Feeds

Microsoft Search Server 2008 takes on Google Mini, promotes SharePoint

Have a taste, get hooked

The essential guide to IT transformation

Microsoft has announced Search Server 2008, a search engine based on SharePoint Server and SQL Server.

There are two editions, a free Express version and a paid for variant (price not yet determined) which supports high availability and load balancing on a server farm.

They will be released in the first half of 2008, and a preview release is available immediately here. Both editions require either Windows Server 2003 or the forthcoming Windows Server 2008. A dedicated machine is not required, though it is recommended for best performance.

Search Server can draw results from a variety of sources, including simple file shares, Lotus Notes databases, and search engines such as Wikipedia that support the Open Search standard. There are also providers for Google and Windows Live, and connectors for FileNET and Documentum.

Microsoft's SharePoint product manager in the UK, Rob Gray, said these releases are aimed at companies not yet using the full Office SharePoint Server, and that any features not yet in SharePoint Server will in due course be folded into the main product. It integrates with Active Directory so that restricted documents do not show up in searches by unauthorised users.

Gray would not be drawn on the question of how many concurrent users the free Express edition will support. "We're doing benchmarking around what a single Express box gives you versus a connection to an external SQL server versus the full-blown search server in a load-balanced configuration," he said. "There are a lot of different architecture options."

So how does Search Server compare to a search appliance from Google, such as Google Mini. Gray said: "You don't have to buy a piece of hardware; it's free; you don't have preset document limits, and we have a richer administration dashboard."

It seems Microsoft's strategy is to give away a bit more of its SharePoint technology in order to entice more organisations to migrate to the full version, and to keep them hooked on Windows and Office. ®

A freelance journalist since 1992, Tim Anderson specialises in programming and internet development topics. He has columns in Personal Computer World and IT Week, and also contributes regularly to The Register. He writes from time to time for other periodicals including Developer Network Journal Online, and Hardcopy.

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
Time to move away from Windows 7 ... whoa, whoa, who said anything about Windows 8?
Start migrating now to avoid another XPocalypse – Gartner
You'll find Yoda at the back of every IT conference
The piss always taking is he. Bastard the.
HANA has SAP cuddling up to 'smaller partners'
Wanted: algorithm wranglers, not systems giants
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.