Microsoft has released a new beta version of Exchange Server 2007 and the beta for an accompanying anti-virus product, Forefront Security for Exchange.

The second beta of Exchange Server 2007 is a "full-featured" release that's more reliable than the previous version and adds new management and mobility features, claimed Microsoft.

The software includes technologies for confidential business communication and for compliance requirements, the company said. It also allows for access to email, voicemail, calendars and contacts from a wider range of clients and portable devices.

Microsoft said that the new beta improved the capabilities of Exchange Server for mobile users, by offering better email search, for example, and a feature that allows an IT manager to erase data from a lost or stolen device.

The anti-virus product will be the next version of Microsoft Antigen for Exchange, which was released in June. The Antigen brand name came from Sybari Software, which Microsoft acquired in early 2005. Future products will take Microsoft's new Forefront security brand.

Forefront Security for Exchange uses five anti-virus engines to filter viruses and worms while also providing protection against phishing attacks, Microsoft said. The full product is also due to be released later this year or early in 2007.

Remote installations, signature updates and alerts can be managed through a central management console, Microsoft said. The software can be installed remotely through a central management console, through which signature updates, reports and alerts can be managed.