I wrote about Microsoft Equipt (formerly codenamed Albany) in today's WinInfo.

Here's the product fact sheet:

ms_equipt_box Product Overview

Microsoft Equipt is a subscription service that, in one easy installation, delivers security and performance with Windows Live OneCare plus Microsoft Office Home and Student 2007 and other essential tools to help home PC users be more protected, productive and connected.

Windows Live OneCare offers all-in-one security and PC management by combining award-winning anti-malware protection, centralized backup and PC maintenance features that take the hassle out of PC care. Office Home and Student 2007 contains Word 2007, Excel 2007, PowerPoint 2007 and OneNote 2007 so you can get things done and stay organized. If you purchase Microsoft Equipt, you can also extend your Office experience via Microsoft Office Live Workspace, a new service from Microsoft that makes it easy to save documents to a dedicated online Workspace and share these with your friends and classmates.

Microsoft Equipt also includes Windows Live Mail, Windows Live Messenger and Windows Live Photo Gallery to help you stay in touch with friends and family. With an active subscription, you’ll get updates for the latest security protection and enhancements, plus version upgrades for Office Home and Student at no additional cost. Microsoft Equipt can be installed on up to three home PCs.

Pricing and Availability

You can purchase an annual subscription of Microsoft Equipt for $69.99 (estimated retail price). You can install each subscription on up to three home PCs. Version upgrades for both Office Home and Student and OneCare, plus updated virus definitions, are automatic at no additional cost.

microsoft_equipt_graphic Included Products and Services

Windows Live OneCare

· All-in-one security and performance includes antivirus, antispyware, firewall, file and photo backup, performance tune-ups, and home network management to help keep your PC running at its peak.

Microsoft Office Home and Student 2007

· Word 2007. Create great-looking documents with ease.

· Excel 2007. Intuitive spreadsheet tools let you create budgets and more.

· PowerPoint 2007. Design stunning presentations for family, school or volunteer activities.

· OneNote 2007. Organize different kinds of information — text, images, audio and video, Web clippings, and more — in one digital notebook.

Microsoft Office Live Workspace

· This new service from Office makes it easy for you to save documents to a dedicated online Workspace and share these with friends and classmates.

Windows Live tools

· Windows Live Mail. Get all your e-mail in one place.

· Windows Live Messenger. Send instant messages to your friends or have a video chat.

· Windows Live Photo Gallery. Organize and share photos.

· And more. Including Windows Live Writer and Windows Live Toolbar.

Automatic updates and upgrades. Office Home and Student version upgrades plus automatic security updates and OneCare upgrades.

Who Should Purchase Microsoft Equipt?

Microsoft Equipt is for consumers, students or people who are buying new PCs and who are looking for security and antivirus features to help protect their families from online threats. Complete with Windows Live OneCare and Office Home and Student 2007, Microsoft Equipt is the perfect companion for any new PC to help you stay secure and productive, and optimize your new purchase.

Families or anyone running a household

A Microsoft Equipt subscription includes installation on three home computers, and Windows Live OneCare makes it easy to help protect and manage your household computers from one screen, delivering antivirus protection, PC management features, and centralized backup to help keep digital memories safe. Windows Live OneCare helps take the hassle out of multiple PC care. Excel 2007 makes it easy to create and manage your budget, track bills and payments and more. Word 2007 offers all the tools you need to design great-looking greeting cards, note cards, résumés and more. Automatic document recovery helps protect your important work from accidental loss.

Parents with students from K-12 all the way up to graduate school

PowerPoint 2007 comes loaded with pre-formatted templates that help kids plug information into slides, consistently and quickly. Word 2007 makes it easy to add that extra bit of polish to papers and reports. With OneNote 2007, students can consolidate, store, tab and search their valuable information quickly and efficiently, plus attach files of virtually any kind — including audio and video.

Today, Microsoft Office is essential for business, with millions of users worldwide. So while students are writing reports, analyzing data and preparing presentations, they are also mastering the tools that will help launch their careers.

System Requirements

You must accept the Microsoft Service Agreement before you can use Microsoft Equipt. You can read the Microsoft Service Agreement at http://www.microsoft.com/useterms. Service is periodically updated. Activation by Internet is required.

To use Microsoft Equipt, you need the following:

· 2GHz or faster processor

· 1 GB of RAM or more

· 4 GB of available hard disk space; a portion of this disk space will be freed after installation

· CD-ROM or DVD drive

· 1024x768 or higher-resolution monitor

· Windows XP with Service Pack 2 or later (32-bit only), or Windows Vista or later (32-bit or 64-bit)

· Send to Office OneNote 2007 print driver not available on a 64-bit operating system

· Some features require Microsoft Windows Desktop Search 3.0, Windows Media Player 9.0, Microsoft DirectX 9.0b, Microsoft ActiveSync 4.1, microphone (close-talking for Audio Search), audio output device, video recording device (such as a webcam), TWAIN-compatible digital camera or scanner, Windows Mobile 2003-powered Smartphone or Windows Mobile 5-powered Smartphone or Pocket PC, or a router that supports Universal Plug and Play (UPnP)

· Sharing notebooks requires users to be on the same network

· Microsoft Internet Explorer 6 or later, or Firefox browser

· Phishing Filter requires Windows Internet Explorer 7

· Internet connectivity required; broadband access recommended (fees may apply)

· Windows Live OneCare file backup and restore functionality require CD or DVD burner, external hard drive, locally networked computers, or USB-connected storage device

· Creation or usage of a Windows Live ID will be required as part of the service activation

So ... OK. It's a decent deal, I guess, given the cost of Office Home and Student and OneCare, and the expected upgrade schedule for Office. But ... "Equipt"? (I assume it's pronounced as "equipped.") Sounds like the name of Renault vehicle to me, not a Microsoft product.