RIM Intros BlackBerry Server Express - InformationWeek

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Software // Operating Systems

RIM Intros BlackBerry Server Express

The free software allows small and medium-sized businesses to securely synch employees' personal BlackBerrys with Microsoft Exchange or Windows Small Business Server.

Research in Motion, maker of the BlackBerry smartphone, introduced on Tuesday the Enterprise Server Express, free software that wirelessly synchronizes the BlackBerry with Microsoft Exchange or Windows Small Business Server.

RIM debuted its latest server at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain. The software is targeted at small and medium-sized businesses that do not require the more advanced features of the standard Enterprise Server, but would like to securely connect employees' personal BlackBerrys to work e-mail.

Enterprise Server Express works with Microsoft Exchange 2010, 2007, and 2003 and Windows Small Business Server 2008 and 2003. The server provides push-based, wireless access to e-mail, calendar, contacts, notes, and tasks, as well as other business applications and enterprise systems behind the firewall. The express version uses the same security architecture as the standard version.

"In a marketplace where smartphones are becoming ubiquitous, BlackBerry Enterprise Server Express significantly raises the bar by providing a cost-effective solution that allows companies of all sizes to support enterprise-grade mobile connectivity for all employees without compromising security or manageability," Mike Lazaridis, president and co-chief executive for RIM, said in a statement.

Other features in Enterprise Express Server include the ability to manage and search e-mail folders. End users also can book meetings and appointments, check availability, and forward calendar attachments. In addition, Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files can be edited using RIM's Documents To Go software.

For IT administrators, Enterprise Server Express can run on its own server or on the same physical or virtual server as the Microsoft mail server. Express is also certified for use with VMware ESX.

The RIM software includes more than 35 IT controls and policies, including the ability to remotely wipe a smartphone and enforce and reset passwords. Server Express also comes with a Web-based interface that administrators can use to remotely install software, connect BlackBerrys, and apply usage policies.

Enterprise Express Server is scheduled to be available for download in March. RIM competes in the U.S. smartphone market with Apple, which makes the iPhone.

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