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Updates on SMS 2003, Active Directory and Exchange 2010

From saying goodbye to an old friend (SMS 2003) to welcoming a new one (Exchange 2010), this Windows news roundup will keep you up to date on all the developments you need to know.

Microsoft ends mainstream support for SMS 2003
Systems Management Server 2003, arguably Microsoft's most popular systems management software, is moving toward the end of its support lifecycle.

Microsoft's VECD is mandatory for Windows virtualization
Microsoft requires Virtual Enterprise Centralized Desktop in addition to its base OS license. If you want to virtualize Windows desktops, be aware of VECD's uses and gotchas.

Built-in Active Directory backup feature falls short
Windows Server 2008 R2's Active Directory Recycle Bin feature is limited, so IT pros who need full features might be better off using third-party backup tools.

A look at Exchange 2010 benefits and troubles
An Exchange Server 2010 expert explains the benefits of deploying Microsoft's new email server and stresses the importance of lab-based prototype testing.

Service Manager will launch with automation software
Microsoft's System Center Service Manager will finally debut this spring with Opalis automation software.

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