With the release of Exchange Server 2010, Microsoft has expanded existing functionality and introduced new concepts. Exchange 2010 still provides organizations with a robust messaging and collaboration platform, but now enhances the feature set and provides three high-level benefits:
Protection and compliance
Flexibility and reliability
These features are designed to meet the needs of today's mobile workforce, help organizations protect and retain information according to policy, and ensure that e-mail services are available 24/7.
Organizations considering adoption of Exchange 2010 must weigh its benefits against the costs and complexities of managing it. Below is an overview of the new features of Exchange 2010, and some best practices for migrating to this unified communications foundation.
Today, e-mail needs to be available from any location, as end users no longer are tied to a single desktop computer used only during the work day. With that in mind, Microsoft has made accessing and manipulating messaging data easier than ever.
Exchange 2010 includes new functionality in Outlook Web Access (OWA), which now looks and feels like the standard Outlook client, and has a much-improved conversation view that allows users to quickly browse through a thread of messages. Its significantly improved threading capabilities make it comparable to the conversation view in Microsoft Office Outlook 2010.
OWA also now provides users with consistent Web browsing across all major browsers. It now operates with Firefox v3 and higher, and Safari v3 and higher, in addition to Internet Explorer.
Anywhere access with Exchange 2010 allows mobile device users, including those with Windows Mobile 6.1, to access messaging data. Outlook Mobile is being updated to include features available in Windows Mobile 6.5, and the conversation view in Outlook 2010 and OWA 2010 also is available in the latest version of Outlook Mobile. In addition, free/busy calendaring information for users within an organization is available through Outlook Mobile, simplifying the process of scheduling meetings from mobile devices.
Protection and Compliance
The protection and compliance features of Exchange 2010 help organizations achieve regulatory compliance, and ensure that end users use and send messaging data according to policies.
One such new feature is the personal archive. This new capability is useful for organizations that allow their users to manually classify, retain and manage their messaging data for longer-term retention. The personal archive can be used as a repository for historical data previously stored in PST files, which are inherently insecure and can be unreliable. In addition, Exchange administrators can define retention policies for entire archive mailboxes, as well as specific archive mailbox folders and items within the personal archive.