Today, Microsoft announced a free new product called Microsoft Search Server 2008 Express, which will provide enterprise-class search functionality both inside the firewall and to Web-based visitors. Search Server 2008 Express will be augmented by a paid version, Search Server 2008, which is aimed at large corporations and can span multiple servers.
"Information workers waste as much as nine and a half hours each week on searches that don't turn up the right information, which can add up to millions of dollars in lost productivity every year," says Microsoft General Manager Kirk Koenigsbauer. "We believe there is a core set of enterprise search features that every business should have, and we're delivering them for free in Search Server 2008 Express."
Search Server 2008 Express is based on Microsoft's SharePoint technologies and provides a familiar Web search experience. Its only limitation is that it can be installed only on a single server; however, there are no preset document limits, as there are with other low-end enterprise search solutions. Search Server 2008 Express can also aggregate results from several sources. Out of the box, Search Server 2008 Express can search file shares and SharePoint resources, and free add-ons for EMC Documentum and IBM FileNet will ship in early 2008.
A beta version of Search Server 2008 Express is now available on the Microsoft Web site. The company expects to ship the final version of the software in early 2008.