We recently upgraded all Stellenbosch University users from Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 to Exchange Server 2010. Many of you wanted to know why there was a need to change from the previous version to something different and new. Believe it or not, the new version has quite a few advantages – at the back end and for you as a regular Outlook user.
The most obvious difference between the old and new versions can be seen in Webmail. The new Webmail (otherwise knows as the Outlook WebApp) has a new look and feel and some handy new functionality.
Webmail 2010 provides the same conversation view and experience as your Outlook 2010.
Messages are displayed in threads so that all the messages on a particular topic are grouped. No more searching for a previous message to check what the response is referring to. When a new message in a thread comes in, the whole thread gets moved chronologically to the date/time of the new message. Conversation view has its benefits and drawbacks, but if you don’t like it, you can turn it off. Just right-click Arrange By, scroll down to Conversations, and deselect Show Messages In Conversations.
With 2010, you can forward an email message as an attachment. This can come in handy if you need to forward a message to someone but don’t necessarily want the person to open it immediately. You can create an original message where you can tell the person about the attachment.
Previously Internet Explorer was the preferred browser for Webmail. With Firefox you got a “light” version of Webmail instead. 2010 supports the complete, premium experience on Mac OS X with Safari as well as with Firefox.
Another feature is the ability to open up a shared calendar and view it side by side with your own calendar. This is invaluable if you need to make plans that include coordinating your schedule with someone else’s. You can share your calendar with other users of your Exchange 2010 server.
Other advantages in Outlook 2010 are mail tips. This feature will warn you if you use “reply all” to a very large group or if you send sensitive material. Mail tips will also let you know if you are sending an email to someone who has his or her “Out of office” or email auto-reply on.
Moderated transport allows allows distribution lists and mailboxes to be moderated by a non-admin user such as a manager who has to approve messages before they are delivered.
One of the biggest advantage of all these is the lower storage cost. The Exchange Server 2010 database engine is up to 70% more efficient than Exchange Server 2007 in terms of disk read/write performance. This makes it possible to deploy much larger databases, with much larger mailbox quotas, on much larger disks.
This in turn means more space for you. All staff members now have a mailbox limit of 1GB, effectively doubling the space available to you from your Exchange 2007 mailbox.