We’ve recently been planning an upgrade from LCS2005 (standard) to OCS 2007 R2.
On the face of it, IM should be simple, it’s just ip packets wrapping messages, back and forth. That in itself is true, however when you’re looking at deplying a product like OCS, it is SO much more than simply an IM app. It’s pretty much a whole telecomms/communications suite. Microsoft are after the IP PBX market with this one, telepresence, IM, the lot. Basically, It can be as big as you want or as small as you need.
Ignoring the R1/R2 versioning, there are 2 versions of OCS available, Standard and Enterprise.
There are many subtle differences between them, but in essence:
Standard Edition requires that the major components (including the database that stores user info) be installed and configured on 1 single computer. Standard Edition is recommended for companies or organizations that don’t require HA (high availability) via something like clustering. Standard also allows you to use the ‘free’ version of SQL (SQL2005Express), without the need for a full blown SQL install or instance. Standard is meant to support up to 5000 users, I’m not certain I would stretch it that far, but certainly half that would work. Standard Edition also only lets you have 1 pool (per server).
Enterprise Edition allows for the seperation of the individual server components and functionality to multiple servers to allow for distributed load and the use of HA techniques like clustering. Enterprise edition also allows for the creation of multiple pools (distributed offices/load)
There are obvisouly a lot more differences to them, but they’re my highlights.
Microsoft let slip that their latest version will be called OCs2010 and was due for release this year ‘late 2010’ Most of the new features will be in supporting Microsofts desire to own voice and make OCS the PBX of choice. Check it out here.