Announcing Exchange 14 Video on TechNet

Microsoft's KC Lemson and Jim Lucey chat about Exchange Labs and Exchange 14 in a video on TechNet. The video, at just under 10 minutes, give a glimpse of the next version of Exchange with a demo of E14 OWA (Outlook Live).

The idea of reducing the per mailbox cost of operating Exchange is great for Enterprise customers that can benefit from server consolidation, but the same numbers do not trickle down to the 100 user, single server deployments. Smaller companies may see savings moving to a hosted service, for which Exchange 14 is to be more equipped to handle than previous versions. E14 has been developed from scratch as both a corporate application and a service-level product.

The Announcing Exchange 14 video is worth a view for some high level initial interest and probably the first video of some of the new OWA. At first, I was disappointed that it prompted me for the Silverlight plugin, but selecting the Download button reveals several different video formats to choose from.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on January 13, 2009 at 11:51 PM
Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

"Report: Gmail about one-third as expensive as hosted e-mail".. but, we think.. 'You get what you pay for!'

"Report: Gmail about one-third as expensive as hosted e-mail"

An interesting read, and it has reminded me of the ‘should we be considering saving money by moving to Google Mail instead of using Exchange’ question that is floating around a bit more recently, including at a Corporate level.

Well, it's very important to emphasise that flexibility is the key with Exchange. Google's mail offering may at first glance appear to be ‘cheap’, when compared to similar Exchange hosted offerings, and also, to running Exchange ‘in-house,’ but  it is nowhere near as feature rich and flexible as Exchange.

Remember.. 'You get what you pay for'

Some current 'issues' that I believe exist with Google Mail at present.. (from an Enterprise perspective)

-There's no granularity of mailbox size limits

-Limited client-side rules capability

-Mailboxes can be accessed from any internet connected location - this has security considerations for some organisations

-Limited offline use - Google can  provide an ajax client that enables laptops to have the last 60 days' mail available offline though

-Full clients such as Outlook are supported using the IMAP protocol, this would synchronise mail folders, but not calendars, meaning that a laptop user’s calendar would either be online and visible to those permitted, or offline and invisible

-Authentication - custom integration requires to be written/adopted in order for an Active Directory user ID to be used for Google Mail access

-Collaboration - Google of course provides a full suite of tools for collaboration use, however there is little to no granularity as to which users can use which tools

-Telephony - Google's products do not currently support the SIP protocol for telephony integration

-Using a non-Microsoft mail platform would reduce the tight integration possible with applications such as Sharepoint

-In-house application support. Should a third-party application be in-place which integrates or uses Outlook for mail services, the application would need to be developed in order for it to be able to use Google Mail

-Mobile use – BES access would be via IMAP and BB use would therefore not be as functional

-Google Mail is still in ‘BETA’ !

-Google’s Privacy Policy could (should?) be a concern to some (most?) enterprises

So.. all in all.. right now, Google Mail is good for SMEs, but is far from ready for Corporate adoption at present. There’s no doubt that they’ll be working hard to bridge the gap though!

Some misc. useful Google Mail v Exchange links/info...

A lot of the comments that people have left on these articles are in some cases more interesting/informative than the articles themselves.

Let us know what you think, especially if your company has 'taken the plunge.'


Chris Meirick on January 12, 2009 at 12:57 PM
Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack

VMWare - Virtualized Exchange 2007 - Internal Case Study

Learn about VMWare's own virtualized deployment of Exchange 2007..

Deploying Exchange 2007 on VMWare Infrastructure

“VMWare has successfully deployed a fully virtualized Exchange Server 2007 environment on VMWare Infrastructure. This deployment has met and exceeded the business and technical requirements that were defined in this paper. The benefits of virtualization combined with the benefits of Exchange 2007 offer capabilities and cost savings that are not otherwise available.”

Chris Meirick on January 12, 2009 at 12:52 PM
Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Exchange Server Acronyms

I collected some of the acronyms used by Exchange Administrators. I divided them into groups. I am sure there are many omissions, but here is a tabulated list:



HyperText Transfer Protocol


Internet Message Access Protocol v4 Rev1


Lightweight Directory Access Protocol


Messaging Application Programmer Interface


Post Office Protocol v3


Remote Procedure Protocol


Remote Procedure Call over Secure HyperText Transfer Protocol


Real-Time Control Protocol


Real-time Transport Protocol


Session Initiation Protocol


Simple Message Transport Protocol


Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol

Application Programming Interfaces (APIs)


Active Directory Services Interface


Collaborative Data Objects


Distributed Authoring and Versioning


Exchange Web Services



Offline Address Book


Outlook 2007 Mobile Service


Offline STorage


Personal Address Book


Personal Information Manager


Personal STorage


Really Simple Syndication

Exchange Server


Client Access Server


Continuous Cluster Replication


Collaborative Data Objects for Exchange Management


Collaboration Data Objects for Exchange Workflow


Direct Attached Storage


Delivery Status Notification


Exchange Management Console


Exchange Management Shell


Extensible Storage Engine


Exchange System Manager (Exchange 2000/2003)


Exchange Best Practices Analyzer


Front End / Back End


Global Address List


High Availability


Hub Transport


Local Continuous Replication


Non-Delivery Report


Outlook Mobile Access (Exchange 2000/2003)


Outlook Web Access


Recovery Storage Group


Release To Manufacturing


Storage Area Network


Storage Cost Calculator


Single Copy Cluster


Standby Continuous Replication


Unified Messaging


Volume Shadowcopy Service

Active Directory


Active Directory


Comma Separated Values


Domain Controller


Global Catalog


LDAP Data Interchange Format

Windows Server


Background Intelligent Transfer Service


- deprecated


Critical Design Change Request


Distinguished Name


Domain Naming Service


Fully Qualified Domain Name


Internet Information Server


Input/Output Operations Per Second


Logical Unit Number


Microsoft Certified Master


Microsoft Operations Framework


Network Load Balancing


Scalable Networking Pack


Windows Management Instrumentation


Windows SharePoint Services



Certificate Authority


Public Key Infrastructure


Secure/Multipurpose Internet Mail Extensions


Shared Address Name


Secure Sockets Layer


Transport Layer Security


Threat Management Gateway

Unified Communications


End Point IDentifier


Instant Messaging


Private Branch Exchange


Public Switched Telephone Network


Real-Time Communication


SIP Instant Messaging and Presence Language Extensions


Voice over Internet Protocol

Related Third Party Products


Blackberry Enterprise Server

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on January 2, 2009 at 10:19 AM
Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Exchange 2007 Management Pack Update for SCOM 2007 Released

Microsoft has released an update to the Exchange 2007 Management Pack for System Center Operations Manager 2007. This management pack requires SCOM 2007 SP1 plus hotfixes outlined in KBs 950853, 951979 and 951380.

The Exchange 2007 Management pack collects data and centrally reports on all 5 Exchange 2007 roles.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on December 11, 2008 at 03:26 AM
Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Interview with the New Owner of

Recently, Microsoft Outlook MVP Eric Legault acquired the site from longtime Outlook MVP and author Sue Mosher. Eric, through his company Collaborative Innovations, has been developing solutions for Outlook, Exchange and Sharepoint environments for about 7 years.


We had a chance to chat with Eric after this acquisition:


MSExchangeBlog: What are your plans for the site,  Where do you see it in a year or two?


Eric Legault: My primary goal is to make sure the site continues to be the number one resource for Outlook developers.  Sue put a lot of work into the site over the years, so the pressure is on to maintain that high level of quality and ensure that people don’t drift away from the forums.  Sue’s been the face of Outlook development for a long time, and now this weird Canadian dude is suddenly jumping up and down on her ship.  I’m just going to try not to rock the boat too much.


In the long term I want to see it evolve to encompass Microsoft’s collaboration toolset as a whole, featuring developer news, resources and forums for SharePoint and Exchange and maybe other products as well.  I also intend to keep the relationship between Sue’s Outlook books and the site, as I will most likely be writing a programming book for the next version of Outlook as well.


If I have time, I may even get creative and do some kind of new media thing as a kind of sister-site.  I already have, but I’d need <COUGH FUNDING> help  from the Microsoft PR/marketing  machine…


MSEB: You have fairly active forums on the site. Is this the premier non-Microsoft resource for peer-to-peer assistance on Outlook programming?


EL: Absolutely.  I can’t even think of another forum that’s not Microsoft related - MSDN Forums and the microsoft.public.outlook* newsgroups are the only other active communities that I’ve utilized or participated in.


MSEB: What percentage of Outlook development is connected to Microsoft Exchange Server?  Sharepoint?


EL: For a rough number, I’d say 75% Exchange and 10% SharePoint (15% Outlook only).  Of course if we look at the consumer market we’d be seeing very little integration in Outlook with those products. I can only accurately speak from my experiences, but I’ve certainly seen that the majority of Outlook projects for businesses are related to Exchange in some way.  SharePoint integration is picking up as companies start to realize the potential and see ways where custom solutions can solve some unique business challenges.   


I’m also starting to see more and more projects that are completely  Exchange driven without using one bit of client side programming with Outlook.  These are typically Windows Services applications using Redemption, and are taking on SOA aspects as they integrate Exchange with databases and web services.  Outlook is ultimately involved in the processes that flow through these components but may not even be extended into these solutions with COM Add-Ins or custom forms. 


MSEB: How does the increased use of Exchange Web Services (EWS) influence Outlook development decisions and opportunities?


EL: I haven’t really caught this wave yet, although one of my upcoming projects will finally let me play with EWS.  But the issues are apparent – at what point does the solution make sense to be completely decoupled from Outlook?  There’s little functionality in EWS AFAICS that can’t be done in a COM Add-In with OOM and Redemption.  From my perspective EWS are ways to get at Exchange data without Outlook – but I think Outlook is already the ideal solution in many cases.  So I think we’re looking at non-competing areas, although I’m constantly looking at opportunities where EWS can shine when used within an Outlook COM Add-In.  However, I think EWS has the greatest potential to extend SharePoint solutions. 


Much of the messaging functionality to date has been nothing more than glorified OWA Web Parts or Outlook View Controls.  There’s a huge gap there, but that space will get filled as more and more projects pile up to get the data in Public Folders migrated to SharePoint.  Even though that’s really moving away from Exchange to SharePoint, the increased exposure to the platforms from both sides will nurture innovation.  The experience gained in these projects will most likely see Exchange devs and IT pros looking at SharePoint with new ideas for collaborative tools, and then the SharePoint experts will get more and more exposed to looking at how to bring content that is staying in Exchange to the forefront in their deployments - content that would be ideally accessed via EWS.


MSEB: Will we see NHL hockey in Winnipeg, MB again anytime soon?


EL: I’m one of those idealists who still believes it’s possible – regardless of the economic realities, available franchises or the ability or willingness of Winnipeggers to pay for tickets that will be more than double what it was before.  It’s inevitable that the NHL will add one or more teams to Canada because the Southern US experiment will eventually fail and see one or two teams fold , and the overall sentiment is that a team should be put here first (sorry Quebec). 


Hockey will always be the #4 sport or lower in the US, and always #1 in Canada – logic and passion will eventually win and the focus will return to nurturing hockey’s roots in its primary markets.  But I think that when a franchise does becomes available, we will still need a billionaire white knight to take the risk and make it happen.  I’m looking at you Mr. Gates – you’ll be a hero in Canada.  Think of the “Winnipeg Vistas”…


MSEB:  Thank you for your time Eric, and best of luck with your new venture.


EL: Thanks William!

William Lefkovics on October 26, 2008 at 11:12 PM
Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack Exchange Server Articles

The website is sponsored by SQL Server software vendor Red Gate Software. Red Gate is working on Exchange Server Archiver, their entry into the somewhat crowded e-mail archiving software market. You can e-mail them if you want to be included in the beta, which is scheduled to start in November.

I was honoured to be asked to contribute a few articles to in support of their Exchange efforts:

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on October 25, 2008 at 12:57 AM
Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Microsoft Announces Office Communication Server 2007 R2

Microsoft has formally announced the upcoming release of Office Communication Server 2007 RC2. They call this a minor update to the successful OCS 2007.

The biggest changes coming with the R2 release are:

  • Dial-in audioconferencing. 
    Desktop sharing. 
    Persistent group chat.
  • Attendant console and delegation. 
    Session Initiation Protocol trunking. 
    Response group.
    Mobility and single-number reach.
  • APIs and Visual Studio integration.

The worldwide product launch is scheduled for February 2009.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on October 16, 2008 at 09:00 AM
Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Exchange Documentation Updates

A few months ago Microsoft starting listing updates to the Technet Exchange Server Library documentation on a monthly basis. The Documentation Updates site summarizes which articles had content changed over the last month and what topics are new to the library.

For June 2008, for example, there were 5 new articles added and 24 articles updated.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on June 29, 2008 at 11:52 PM
Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Microsoft Exchange 2007 Search Basics

Unlike Exchange 2003, Exchange Search is enabled by default in Exchange 2007 and is automatically applied to new databases as they are created. Exchange Search depends on a full-text indexing and each mailbox database in Exchange 2007 has a full-text index associated with it. However, this latest incarnation of Exchange server-side search not the status quo. Search for Microsoft Exchange 2007 has been rewritten. 

Indexing content is now performed as messages arrive at the store and not on a set schedule. Certain attachment types are also indexed, most notably Word, Excel, PDF, PowerPoint and HTML files. To facilitate these changes, indexing is now more integrated with the Information Store Service. The result has been much improved indexing performance in Exchange 2007.

Exchange 2007 Search will show a few processes in Task Manager:

  • Microsoft.Exchange.Search.ExSearch.exe (MSSearch)
  • Msftefd.exe (filter daemon - similar to SQL Server 2005)
  • Msftesql.exe (core indexer)

These Exchange 2007 Search processes will throttle server-side full-text indexing when the Exchange Server needs resources for client access so the user experience is not negatively impacted. Otherwise, new messages get indexed within seconds of arrival. Searches using the server-side Exchange 2007 Search return results expeditiously.

Exchange 2007 Search is not the same as Instant Search in Outlook 2007, which is implemented with Windows Desktop Search (WDS) on the client. Outlook 2007 Instant Search requires either a .pst or Exchange cached mode (.ost). For the desktop client to benefit from Exchange 2007 Search they need to use either Outlook Web Access or a MAPI profile without Exchange cached mode (online mode).

Even though they are index-enabled by default, some databases may not need to be searched efficiently and therefore do not require an index. Full-text indexing is toggled on or off ($true or $false) from the Exchange Management Shell as follows:

>Set-MailboxDatabase <MailboxDatabaseName> -IndexEnabled $false

Also using PowerShell, the Test-ExchangeSearch cmdlet is used to verify the status of Exchange 2007 Search by creating a message and querying for that message and reporting back to the administrator.

William Lefkovics

William Lefkovics on February 12, 2008 at 01:29 PM
Permalink | Comments (51) | TrackBack