Open dialogue about standards, open source, and interoperability at Microsoft

May, 2013

  • Your Input Needed: Exchange Server and Outlook Standards

    Posted by Michael Bowman
    Program Manager, Office Engineering

    Microsoft recognizes that enabling interoperability between products from different vendors is important, particularly with respect to email and calendaring functionality, as it helps our customers stay connected and organized across their favorite services and devices.


    Exchange Server 2013 and Microsoft Outlook 2013 support the following core and most commonly adopted email and calendaring standards:

    • IMAP (Internet Message Access Protocol - RFC 3501): IMAP allows a client to access and manipulate electronic mail messages on a server. This protocol allows Exchange users to access their email across a broad range of IMAP clients and enables Outlook users to access email on IMAP servers.
    • POP3 (Post Office Protocol version 3 - RFC 1939): POP3 is a broadly adopted standard for webmail service providers. Outlook uses the POP3 protocol to retrieve messages from the server. The POP3 service for Microsoft Exchange Server is used by clients that implement the POP3 protocol to store and retrieve messages on the server.
    • iCalendar (RFC 2445, RFC 2446, RFC 2447): This common format facilitates the open exchange of calendaring and scheduling information across the Internet. iCalendar is supported by both Outlook and Exchange and enables syncing and publishing of calendar items across supported services and servers, regardless of platform.
  • Openness Customer Spotlight: UK Meteorological Office Opens Up their Data in the Cloud

    Posted by Mark Gayler
    Microsoft Open Technologies, Inc.

    Recently we’ve seen a substantial increase in public sector cloud adoption, as governments worldwide embrace cloud solutions to operate more cost effectively and enhance services. This has also created an opportunity to open up government data in more accessible ways, empowering citizens and developers to undertake their own analyses and help improve communities by using the data for new innovative applications and services.

    Microsoft is working with many government entities worldwide to “open up” their data repositories in the cloud, helping them realize the full benefits of open and interoperable mobile access, social media, and crowdsourcing. The Windows Azure platform provides a highly scalable and reliable cloud-based infrastructure for government data, with the Windows Azure Marketplace managing complex data scenarios, from real time data feeds to high volume data archives, allowing governments to syndicate content commercially, release data freely, or both.

    The UK Meteorological Office (Met Office) is using the Windows Azure Marketplace to host their weather data archives and make the data broadly available. The release of the weather information to the public was a key component of the government’s plan, announced in the Chancellor of the Exchequer’s 2011 Autumn statement, to encourage new market opportunities and improve standards and transparency in public services.

  • Available Today: Hortonworks Brings Open Source Apache Hadoop to Windows

    Posted by Kerry Godes
    Senior Manager, Worldwide Marketing & Operations

    Today Hortonworks announced the general availability of Hortonworks Data Platform (HDP) for Windows, the industry’s first 100 percent open source Apache Hadoop-based distribution for Windows.

    hortonworksThis marks an important milestone in Microsoft’s partnership with Hortonworks and our overall big data approach, reflecting a deep investment in ensuring customers have choice and interoperability when building and running Hadoop-based solutions.

    Today’s release helps to accelerate the adoption of Hadoop by expanding the number of supported platforms, delivering an open source Apache Hadoop-based distribution that is enterprise-ready and interoperable across Linux, Windows Server and Windows Azure.

  • Office Web Apps: More to Love, Coming to Your Favorite Devices

    Posted by Kerry Godes
    Senior Manager, Worldwide Marketing & Operations

    The Office team recently shared plans for some of the upcoming investments Microsoft is making to deliver a great Office experience on the Web, including broad cross-platform device support.

    When Microsoft launched Office Web Apps in 2010, the apps were companions to the Office desktop experience that enabled lightweight, on-the-go content creation and review. Since then, browser technologies and speeds have advanced and development infrastructure has matured, making the Web a better productivity platform.

    With these improvements, Microsoft’s goal is to deliver Office Web Apps that people can rely on to create polished Office documents from start to finish, all from the Web and on virtually any device.

  • Northwest Open Source Hackathon: Making Open Source Projects on Windows Easier

    Posted by Garrett Serack
    Senior Software Developer, Microsoft Open Source Technology Center

    This past Friday, developers filled the room for Outercurve’s first annual Northwest Open Source Hackathon. With a special focus on the recent NuGet 2.5 release, the event brought together developers from open source projects like NuGet, CoApp, and Orchard, along with engineers from groups across Microsoft.

    All too often, open source developers work together ‘virtually’ – we collaborate, design and code – all without working in the same room together. Hackathons bring us face-to-face, which helps us work on big ideas.

    “Hackathons and plugfests in general are a staple of the open source community,” said Sam Ramji, Outercurve’s Board President. “Developers get together and test out new product ideas. New developers who are interested in contributing to one of the existing Outercurve-hosted projects get a chance to work with the architects of the projects directly.”