From 2007 to 2016, four versions of Microsoft Exchange Server were launched. Each version was an improved form of the previous version, and there were many modifications made in each version. From adding new features to making improvements in the existing ones, Microsoft adopted a very systematic way of making changes in each version. This blog post addresses the journey of Microsoft Exchange Server from 2007 to 2016.
Understanding Microsoft Exchange Server
Microsoft Exchange Server is a Microsoft platform for email, contact scheduling, and collaboration. It is deployed on the Windows Server operating system, and it is used within a business organization. The main motive of designing the Exchange Server was to give users access to the messaging platform on various devices and systems like tablets and desktop. The users on the Exchange Server collaborate by sharing calendar and different types of documents. The prevalent Exchange server supports voice message, and its storage feature allows users to archive content in the most seamless way possible.
Microsoft Exchange Server 2007
Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 is a premier enterprise based server, and it was launched in the year 2007 with various new improvements and features. Following were some of the most important features and improvements made in the Microsoft Exchange Server 2007:
* New Setup Process – One of the biggest changes made in the 2007 version was all-new setup process. Unlike the 2005 version, the 2007 version setup first analyzed the system for the required components like Windows PowerShell, Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0, and Microsoft Management Console.
Along with this, in the 2007 version, a new Exchange Best Practice Analyzer was also introduced.
* New Exchange Management Console – Another unique feature added to the 2007 version was the new Exchange Management Console. Unlike the previous GUI, the new Exchange Management Console was built on Exchange Management Shell.
* Support for Unified Messaging – Support for UM was added in the 2007 version, and it was one of the most demanding features after the release of the previous version. With this feature, the need for a voicemail system was nullified.
* Support For Antivirus – A new support system for antivirus was also introduced in the 2007 version. Several built-in antivirus systems like sender and recipient filtering were added.
Microsoft Exchange Server 2010
Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 was launched in the year 2009, and it is an upgraded version of Microsoft Exchange Server 2007. There were many enhancements made in the Exchange ActiveSync and Windows mobile devices. But these are just a glimpse of improvements and additions that were introduced through Microsoft Exchange Server 2010.
* Multi Mailbox Search – The new feature of multi mailbox search simplified the process of E-discovery for the organization as earlier; it was a very complicated and time-consuming process. With the help of multi mailbox search, firms were able to perform searches on organization level across users’ mailboxes. Through multi mailbox search, even searching for multiple keywords become easy.
* Exchange Control Panel – It was a new management tool that was introduced in the 2010 version. Everybody knew that the Exchange Control Panel was introduced in the 2010 version with the motive of replacing Exchange Management Control, but it was a welcome addition for sure.
* Database Level Failover – in the 2007 version of Microsoft Exchange Server, even a simple failure resulted in the entire cluster node to failover. This was a bigger problem if a server was hosting various databases. This is why in the 2010 version; the SupportSupport for database-level failover was introduced.
* Voicemail Transcription – By working on speech recognition engine model, the 2010 version automatically converted all the voicemail messages.
Microsoft Exchange Server 2013
In July 2012, the new Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 was launched for the users. After the introduction of the 2010 version, many speculations were raised regarding the new version, and Microsoft again did a great job with its original release. Following are some of the highlighted features that were introduced in the 2013 version.
* Option of Customizing Outlook – The new 2013 version gave users the ability to customize outlook and OWA by integrating different types of apps directly from the Office Marketplace. The NAPA tool and HTML5 were the preferred way to customize outlook in your own way.
* Anti-malware Protection – One of the most noticeable features added in the 2013 version was the built-in anti-malware protection. This new built-in feature gave administrations the power of both configuring and managing settings from inside the Exchange Online Protection.
* Site Mailboxes – In the previous version, both the Exchange emails and Sharepoint documents were at a different location, but in the 2013 version, site mailboxes brought both emails and reports together.
* New Data Loss Prevention – The newly launched DLP gave users the power to identify and protect sensitive data quickly. The DLP policies were based on regulatory standards.
Microsoft Exchange Server 2016
The Microsoft Exchange Server 2016 was introduced with a motive of making the exchange server more stable, efficient in hardware installation, and more effective in failure isolation. There were many changes made in the architecture of this new version. Here are some of those changes and introductions-
* Better search Experience – Due to asynchronous and decentralized architecture, the search experienced improved a lot in the 2016 version. The search capability was increased to 10k mailboxes per search.
* Cloud-focused Architecture – Due to the growth of cloud computing, the 2016 version came with a cloud-focused architecture. It supported mailboxes provisioning in the cloud, along with the regular on-site deployment.
* Seamless Collaboration on SharePoint and OneDrive – in the 2016 version, users were able to integrate SharePoint without any hassle. When an email was received on the 2016 version with an attachment, it was automatically saved on OneDrive.
* Enhancement in Outlook App Feature – The outlook app feature was also improved in the 2016 version.
Recently, the Microsoft Exchange Server 2019 was released in the market, and several new features like Windows Server Core, search infrastructure, unified messaging, and reliable failovers were introduced. With the release of every Exchange version, Microsoft has proven that it will never compromise on its goal of supporting people and organizations as they drift from communication focus to a collaboration focus.