Channel Insider content and product recommendations are editorially independent. We may make money when you click on links to our partners. Learn More.

Microsoft Corp. on Thursday announced that it has delivered the second release candidate for Windows .Net Server 2003.

Customers can register to obtain a trial version of RC2 through the Customer Preview Program at

Microsoft on Thursday also made available the second beta for its new Group Policy Management Console (GPMC), which is also available through the Customer Preview Program.

GPMC eases the management of Group Policy operations and will be available to Windows .Net Server 2003 customers as a free download.

“With RC2, Microsoft has completed final packaging for each of its four editions of Windows .Net Server 2003,” said Bob O’Brien, group product manager for Windows .Net Server. “This includes activated support for 64-way large multiprocessing systems with support for 512GB of memory for the high-end Datacenter Edition, enabling greater performance capacity and making it suitable for the most demanding applications and systems.”

Information on each of the .Net Server 2003 editions can be found at

The final product is scheduled for next April, and will also bring certain licensing changes. Among these is a move away from the per-server and per-seat Client Access License (CAL) option currently in place to a model that allows per-user and per-server usage.

The benefit of the per-user option, according to O’Brien, is that it will allow a user to access their applications through the server using any of their devices. Up until now, users had to pay a separate CAL fee for every device.

To read the full article, go to eWeek.