Many Exchange team folks were at Microsoft TechEd North America 2011 in Atlanta last week. Thanks to all of you who attended the breakout sessions, chalk talks, Birds of a Feather (BOF) discussions and Hands-On Labs. All of you who stopped by the Exchange booths to ask us questions about Exchange 2010, Exchange Online, ForeFront Protection for Exchange 2010 and ForeFront Online Protection for Exchange (FOPE), or grabbed our "swag-you-can-wear" or a voucher for the Exchange Escape lounge, thanks for dropping by!

Yes, the Super Sparkle Happy OWA theme t-shirts were quite the rage, and so were the the Geek Out With Perry t-shirts, the LG-Nortel Lync phones we handed out during the sessions and the HD webcams.

While at TechEd, we announced enhanced hardware virtualization support for Exchange 2010, including support for virtualizing the Unified Messaging server role and the use of high availability features on supported hardware virtualization platforms along with Exchange 2010's high availability feature – Database Availability Groups (DAGs). To help you plan and deploy Exchange 2010 in a virtualized environment, we also released the Best Practices for Virtualizing Exchange Server 2010 with Windows Server 2008 R2 Hyper-V whitepaper. And last, but certainly not the least, we announced Exchange 2010 Service Pack 2, to be released in the second half of this year.

The team presented some well-received sessions on topics ranging from Exchange 2010 high availability and site resilience to archiving & discovery and a number of Office 365 sessions. If you couldn't come to TechEd, we'd like to bring TechEd to you! Check out video recordings of the following sessions available on the TechEd web site. You can also download the PowerPoint slide decks for these sessions and download the videos in different formats from these pages.

  • EXL302 Archiving and Discovery in Microsoft Exchange 2010 SP1 and Exchange Online | Krish Sundaresan
  • EXL306 Best Practices for Virtualization of Microsoft Exchange 2010 | Jim Lucey, Jeff Mealiffe
  • EXL307 Load Balancing with Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 | Andrew Ehrensing
  • EXL309 Microsoft Exchange Online in Microsoft Office 365: Migration Case Study | John Logan, Danny Kim, Ann Vu
  • EXL310 Microsoft Exchange Online in Microsoft Office 365: Simple Migration Live! | Ram Poornalingam
  • EXL311 Microsoft Exchange Server and Microsoft Office 365: How to Set Up a Hybrid Deployment | Jim Lucey
  • EXL312 Designing Microsoft Exchange 2010 Mailbox High Availability for Failure Domains | Ross Smith IV
  • EXL313 Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 Tips and Tricks | Scott Schnoll
  • EXL322 Microsoft Exchange Online: Unified Messaging in Microsoft Office 365 | Michael Wilson
  • EXL324 Top 10 Insights on Development of Microsoft Exchange Server and Microsoft Lync Server 2010 against Microsoft Office 365 | Albert Kooiman, Robin Thomas
  • EXL326 What’s New in Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 SP2: Featuring GAL Segmentation | Greg Taylor
  • EXL327 Real-World Site Resilience Design in Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 | Robert Gillies
  • EXL401 Exchange Server 2010 High Availability Management and Operations | Scott Schnoll

Upgrading to Exchange 2010

One of the more frequent questions you asked us at TechEd was: How do I upgrade to Exchange 2010 from Exchange 2007, Exchange 2003, or an environment with a mix of Exchange 2007 and Exchange 2003? We have detailed documentation that covers these scenarios. See Exchange 2003 - Planning Roadmap for Upgrade and Coexistence and Exchange 2007 - Planning Roadmap for Upgrade and Coexistence.

Many of you also asked us about leveraging the power of the cloud, and we couldn't be happier with all the excitement about the Office 365 beta! Check out Coexistence with Hosted E-Mail. We welcome you to participate in the Office 365 community, which has some great blogs, forums, and wikis to help you learn more about Office 365 and how to benefit from it. Note, Office 365 is in beta at the time of writing and we continue to add more documentation and resources.

Did you know that...

  • Office 365 and Exchange 2010 support two coexistence modes: Simple coexistence and rich coexistence
  • In simple co-existence mode, you can benefit from a unified Global Address List between your on-premises Exchange 2010 organization and your Office 365 cloud-based Exchange organization
  • In rich co-existence mode, you have all the benefits of the simple coexistence mode and additional features such as seamless sharing free/busy information between your on-premises Exchange organization and the cloud and the ability to move mailboxes from your on-premises organization to your cloud organization (and back from the cloud to your on-premises organization)

Learn more about coexistence with Office 365 in Understanding Coexistence.

Additionally, check out the Exchange Server Deployment Assistant (aka ExDeploy, aka EDA), a cool web-based tool we released last year that's been receiving some rave reviews. ExDeploy asks you a few simple questions about your existing Exchange Server deployment. Based on your answers, it provides you with a detailed checklist that you can follow to upgrade to Exchange 2010 on-premises, deploy a hybrid on-premises and Exchange Online organization or migrate to Exchange Online. We continue to keep this tool updated with more content and additional scenarios based on your feedback.


Figure 1: The Exchange Server Deployment Assistant (ExDeploy) is a web-based tool that helps you upgrade to Exchange 2010 on-premises, deploy a hybrid on-premises and Exchange Online organization or migrate to Exchange Online

High Availability, Site Resilience, Retention and Archiving

Many of you also had questions about High Availability, Site Resilience, Retention and Archiving. There were quite a few sessions on these topics. Also check out the following topics in Exchange 2010 documentation:

We always look forward to meeting customers and members of the Exchange community from all over the world at TechEd and other events throughout the year. Stay tuned — we've got some blog posts planned for you over the next few weeks that'll address many questions you asked us at TechEd.

See you next year in Orlando, FL!

Bharat Suneja