Many of our customers are still running their messaging system on Microsoft Exchange 2003 servers. In this blog post, I will focus on these customers and why they should upgrade to Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, from end-users’ productivity perspective. In another post in near future, I will focus on Administrative productivity after upgrading from Exchange 2003.

The following features are identified by many companies as the features that end-users are enjoying after upgrading their infrastructure from Microsoft Exchange 2003 to Microsoft Exchange Server 2010.

1)      In the new system (Exchange 2010), you can easily check your mailbox size and limit during an Outlook Web Access (OWA) session. Just bring your mouse arrow over your name displayed in OWA and it will show your mailbox size.

2)      You can now setup “Out of Office” message easier than before and you can separate the OOF message that will go to internal users and to Internet users. You can set this via Outlook or via Outlook Web Access (OWA). Also you can set the date/time when this OOF will automatically enable and disable. So, let’s say, if you have a confirmed plan to be out of office two weeks from now, you can still set your out of office message with correct date and time and you don’t need to wait for the last day to set this out of office message. The OOF message will automatically be enabled and disabled on the dates you specified.

3)      You can now see “Global Address List” with Outlook Web Access (OWA) also.

4)      The email in Outlook Web Access (OWA) will arrive automatically just like in Outlook without needing user to refresh the page.

5)      Users can access internal file shares from File and SharePoint servers through Exchange Server Outlook Web Access (OWA). For this to work however, Exchange Administrator should add the file servers and Share Point servers that you would like to access across Internet and user should have appropriate permissions to access the respective file shares and files.

6)      Outlook Web Access (OWA) has been improved to provide much better performance and usability. The Private computer security setting now allows you to stay logged in for up to 24 hours. Calendaring and scheduling has been greatly improved. OWA now provides the ability to open another user's mailbox (assuming you have the appropriate rights to do so). Public Folders now open in the same OWA window. Searching for an email items takes only seconds, no matter how large the mailbox is.

7)      Suspected spam that is not blocked by the Edge server is delivered to Outlook's built-in Junk E-mail folder. Users can choose to block or allow emails from users or domains directly from Outlook without the need for third-party software.

8)      WebReady Document Viewing renders common document types for you to view within OWA, even if the application is not installed on that computer. For example, if you want to view an Excel attachment from a machine that does not have Excel installed, click the "View as web page" link next to the attachment. Exchange 2010 will convert the spreadsheet to a web page for you to review.