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Microsoft buys Valence Research

Microsoft acquires fault tolerance software developer Valence Research for an undisclosed amount to extend its NT clustering capabilities.

Microsoft today said it acquired fault tolerance software developer Valence Research for an undisclosed amount to extend its NT clustering capabilities.

The Beaverton, Oregon-based Valence builds load balancing and fault tolerance software for the Microsoft Windows NT operating system. Microsoft said it plans to rename Valence's Convoy Cluster Software to Microsoft Windows NT Load Balancing Service, which it says it will make a standard component of its NT Server Enterprise Edition.

The company said some of the NT products that will benefit from the new service include outbound SMTP mail service in Microsoft Exchange Server and Microsoft Proxy Server as well as integrated system services, such as Microsoft Internet Information Service, Point-to-Point Tunneling Protocol Service, and Microsoft Internet Authentication Service.

The newly acquired technology complements the features already provided by the clustering subsystem in Windows NT Server Enterprise Edition.

Valence has been providing its technology to Microsoft as a component of Microsoft's online services like microsoft.com and MSN.com, a group of heavily trafficked sites.

"We are excited to extend our clustering capabilities with this acquisition so that many more Microsoft customers can benefit from this technology," Jim Allchin, senior vice president of the personal and business systems group at Microsoft, said in a statement.

The new Microsoft Windows NT Load Balancing Service is also compatible with Internet Protocol Security and the Internet Engineering Task Force for end-to-end network security standard.

Shipping and pricing information for Microsoft Windows NT Load Balancing Service will be provided in a separate announcement later in the year, Microsoft said.