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Hoping to stay competitive in the market for Web tools, Microsoft will post a major upgrade to its FrontPage HTML editing tool for Windows 95.

Hoping to stay competitive in the market for Web authoring tools, Microsoft (MSFT) will post a major upgrade next week to its FrontPage HTML editing tool for Windows 95, according to sources.

Dubbed FrontPage 97, the new application will integrate the ability to embed elements such as ActiveX controls, Java applets, and JavaScript programs into Web pages, sources said. Previously, FrontPage users were limited to creating static HTML pages.

Microsoft acquired FrontPage from a small Internet developer, Vermeer Technologies, last January in an effort to bolster its position in the Web authoring arena. But the market for Web design tools is evolving quickly, and FrontPage has fallen behind more sophisticated applications such as NetObjects' Fusion.

Officials for the company had no comment. But sources said Microsoft is planning on posting a beta version of FrontPage on the Net on Monday, sources said.