This week, Microsoft has announced details of its upcoming Service Packs for Office on PC and Mac, Perceptive’s ImageNow integrates with Dynamics AX, Motive’s Cloud Vault is launched on Azure, Kofax releases Express 2.5 and Nuance releases its new PDF Connector.

Microsoft Announces Office, SharePoint SP1

Microsoft (news, site) will be releasing Office for Mac 2011 Service Pack 1 (SP1) this week, which will provide increased stability, security and some new features to the suite -- including improved Outlook syncing support -- as well as some performance enhancements.

As a result, users will be able to sync calendars between Outlook for Mac and Apple’s Sync Services. This means that they can sync Outlook calendar as well as contacts, notes and tasks with any service or device that supports Sync Services, including iPhone and iPad.

Also, this week, Microsoft has announced that, nearly a year after the release of Office 2010 and SharePoint 2010, it is getting ready to release the first Service Packs for each. Over the coming weeks, Microsoft says, it will be releasing details of what we will see in them, but it's offered some teasers as to what we should expect.

The SP for Office will contain language updates to the 40 languages it already supports, as well as grouping all the security releases that have filtered onto the market since its original release.

The release schedule will be made public at next month’s TechEd North America conference in Atlanta. Any changes to Office and SharePoint products are cumulative, so any updated packages that are shipped will contain Cumulative and Public updates to date.

Between now and the time of release, Microsoft says it will publish more details about the coming changes to Office 2010 suites, Project 2010, Visio 2010, Office 2010 servers, Office Web Apps, Search Server 2010, SharePoint 2010 Products and FAST Search Server 2010. Interested in more on this?

Kofax Releases v2.5

Kofax (news, site) has announced Kofax Express 2.5, a new version of its scan-to-archive software package for less complex applications that makes it easier for users to scan, index and export documents for retrieval.

It also comes with indexing capabilities and certification for Microsoft SharePoint 2010 that will improve its ability to capture documents and data for faster processing and better data quality.

Kofax recently announced that it was selling its hardware business to German company Hannover Finanz for US$ 23.2 million, a decision it said was driven by its aim to focus on software development.

That decision already appears to be paying off dividends with this release, which is targeted at departments in enterprises as well as the SMB market, which, we have already seen recently, is beginning to spend on IT again. In this respect, the SharePoint certification is particularly judicious, as SharePoint spending is also one of the areas where growth is expected over the coming year.

M-Files Cloud Vault Runs On Azure

Another document management vendor that has been working the SMB space in the US recently -- Motive Systems -- has released a version of its cloud-based document management service M-Files Cloud Vault that will run natively on the Windows Azure cloud platform.

According to Motive Systems, which makes M-Files Cloud Vault, this is the first professional document management solution running on Azure.

The Windows Azure platform includes a cloud services operating system and a set of developer services hosted in Microsoft data centers that provide the functionality to build applications that span everything from consumer Web to enterprise scenarios.

The Azure platform would seem to be a perfect fit for Cloud Vault. When it was released originally last September, Greg Miliken, president of M-Files, said that the company aimed to create a system that was easy to use and that wouldn’t require massive initial investment.

Azure fits into this by reducing the need for up-front technology purchases and enables developers to create applications running in the cloud by using standard Microsoft development tools such as Visual Studio and the Microsoft .NET Framework.

Perceptive Integrates Dynamics AX

Perceptive (news, site) has also been busy, and announced the integration of its ImageNow document management, imaging and workflow software with Microsoft Dynamics AX.

The ImageNow’s integration supports the ability to associate various file types and images to specific transactions, and to retrieve the file or document image at the transaction/line item level from within the ERP software.

Perceptive’s Interact for Microsoft Dynamics AX is also available for the financial management modules including general ledger, accounts payable and receivable and fixed assets.

You may recall that, last year, Lexmark announced that it has agreed to buy enterprise content management vendor Perceptive Software for US $280 million, with ImageNow as the main target of the buy.

ImageNow adds its technology to a specific business process rather than applying generic document management software across an enterprise, making it a good match for Dynamics AX Microsoft’s enterprise resource planning software, and which is due for a full release of V6 later on this year.

Nuance PDF Converter Enterprise 7.1

Finally, Nuance (news, site), which is one of the main competitors to Adobe in the PDF space, has announced that Nuance PDF Converter Enterprise has added another connector to its growing portfolio of supported document management systems and is now integrated with NetDocuments (news, site) SaaS document management services.

Nuance PDF Converter Enterprise 7.1 enables enterprises to convert, edit, share, and create PDF files, including the ability to redact, amp, and combine documents of any type with drag-and-drop into one PDF.

The NetDocuments connector provides an out-of-the-box configuration to display a NetDocuments Save toolbar option. This allows a user to save a PDF file into NetDocuments, and then select the desired matter-centric location to store the document. The connector is included in PDF Converter Enterprise 7.1.