Microsoft Office Communication Server R2 ships in December plus Hosted OCS Coming

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Randy Savicky
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Microsoft Office Communication Server R2 ships in December plus Hosted OCS Coming

I discovered two Microsoft job postings several weeks ago and have been meaning to blog the discovery that Microsoft Office Communication Server R2 will ship in December of this year. One is for 'Software Development Engineer in Test - MBD - RTC' and the other for 'Lead Software Develpment Engineer in Test - Office Communications Server'. One of the job posting says:
"The Office Communications Server team is starting a new deployment/management/administration team at Beijing. The Office Communications Server product team must deliver both an on-premise version of the Server as well as offering a hosted Service for Small and Medium Businesses. The test lead needs to understand current infrastructure (MMC, Setup.Exe, MOM, etc.) to help out in next release called wave13 due to ship in December 2008.

As the team ramps up in MBD China, the team gain experience in these areas and can form opinions/ideas as to how best to architect a new solution for the future. The test lead will work with PMs and Devs to identify scenarios, architect and build a new solution for both on premise and hosted offerings due to release in Q2 2010 for deployment/administration/monitoring. The new team would to build a new infrastructure that is conducive to hosted environments.

Examples include: web based flavor of management tools, a topology builder that can visually display a topology and once the solution/topology 'compiles', settings can be rolled out across the server farm (as opposed to admin's having to run setup.exe on every machine out there). Monitoring also needs to be addressed in such a way that the server or service can be somewhat self correcting when alerts fire notifying administrators of a problem.

Key Areas of Responsibility:
Attract, Lead, Train, mentor, grow, and retain SDET talent at all levels
Work closely with the program management and development teams to drive quality through design and implementation
Participate in product spec reviews, design, triage, scheduling, and other product development process
Develop comprehensive test plans assuring the overall quality of the project, including functionality, security, performance and scalability
Hands-on writing test cases and test code
Lead the SDET team in implementation of a scalable, efficient test automation strategy
Work closely with program management and development teams to ensure appropriate quality metrics and goals are defined and tracked throughout the project lifecycle
Drive quality criteria for release and signoff
Work with other SDET leads and managers to ensure engineering excellence initiatives are driven effectively across the Commerce Platform Group."
Apparently, Beijing, China will host some core Microsoft OCS 2007 R2 folks instead of Redmond, Washington in the U.S. I'm not sure how I feel about that. Seems like American IT jobs are constantly being outsourced. But I guess it's a global economy and I'm certainly not for protectionism either. Just very sad that IT jobs are outsourced because labor costs are less expensive than in the U.S.

One very fascinating part of this job posting is where it says, "architect and build a new solution for both on premise and hosted offerings due to release in Q2 2010 for deployment/administration/monitoring. The new team would to build a new infrastructure that is conducive to hosted environments."

It would appear Microsoft wants to take OCS 2007 into hosted environments by 2010. Many service providers offer very successful hosted Exchange 2007 services, so offering hosted unified communications (IM, VoIP, video, collaboration, etc.) via a hosted OCS 2007 offering is a natural progression. Hosted OCS 2007 is a much higher value proposition than hosted Exchange email services and could be a boon to service providers. One advantage of a hosted OCS 2007 offering is that it removes the complexities of deploying OCS 2007 in the enterprise.

So look for a hosted OCS offering in 2010. You heard it here first!


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