Email is basically a utility service for businesses—like electricity—and Azaleos wants to be "the utility company for email," says Azaleos CTO and cofounder Keith McCall. Azaleos's announcement Monday of a major version 2.0 upgrade of its Exchange Server appliance/managed services combination adds new modules that bring the company's managed email offering closer than ever to utility status.

      The new modules add capability to Azaleos's managed email solution, which includes the Azaleos OneServer for Microsoft Exchange 2003 appliance and Azaleos OneStop Managed Services, a set of remote managed services for the appliance available in a tiered pricing scheme. The first module, ArchiveXchange, is an email-archiving solution that moves mail out of the Exchange store to contain mailbox growth and retain messages for compliance. ArchiveXchange, which is part of Azaleos's high-end service ($12 per user per month), costs about $2 per user per month, McCall says.

      The other two modules are part of the base Azaleos managed service ($5 per user per month). Azaleos developed the ViewXchange reporting tool in response to customers who wanted an easy way to generate the 10 to 15 most commonly requested Exchange reports. Through a Web portal, Azaleos customers can retrieve on demand reports on metrics such as message flow and mailbox-store growth. "We believe this \[reporting capability\] is incredibly competitive with Quest Software Spotlight on Exchange," says McCall. The remaining module, SecureXchange, is a remote control tool that lets Azaleos's IT staff access a customer's Exchange server for troubleshooting—without compromising the customer's security or, says McCall, "giving IT the keys to the kingdom." SecureXchange also supports Windows PowerShell scripting and can facilitate an in-place migration to Exchange Server 2007, McCall says.

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—Anne Grubb