R2 beta for Windows Server 2003 released

Staff report

The second beta version of Microsoft's Windows Server 2003 "R2" is now available for download, the company said on Friday.

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See an earlier report on R2

R2, which is built on Windows Server 2003 SP1, is an interim release designed to fit between Windows Server 2003 and the Longhorn version of Windows Server. The latter is due out in 2007.

R2 adds some improvements to identity and access management with Active Directory Federation Services, branch office server management with improvements to replication, as well as storage and setup management with simplified storage area network provisioning, among other things.

The software is scheduled to ship later this year.

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