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Microsoft drops Exchange 2013 Preview

Back in May at The Expert Conference 2012, Exchange GM Kevin Allison made four important points about the future of Exchange:

  1. Three generations are/will be using Exchange,
  2. Exchange needs to be both flexible and reliable,
  3. Exchange needs to offer “anywhere access,” and
  4. Security and compliance are critical.

With the release of the Exchange Server 2013 preview and accompanying preview notes, it seems Allison was letting on more than those in attendance could have known.

If you look at the first point at the “What’s new in Exchange 2013 preview” page, you’ll notice that the first bullet details “supporting a multigenerational workforce.” As the new, younger workforce relies on things like Facebook and Twitter, more seasoned users still rely primarily on email. Exchange 2013 will track users’ social communication and behavior, helping enhance search results in Exchange.

The documentation also points out that Exchange 2013 Preview provides a more resilient solution (see flexible and reliable above). Exchange 2013 has built upon Exchange 2010’s strengths and has been redesigned to simplify scalability, hardware utilization and failure isolation.

In regards to the “anywhere access” comment, not only has Outlook Web App been redesigned, but the mobile device experience has also been improved and all devices are supported.

Additionally, compliance tools have been seriously improved, allowing users to search across not only Exchange, but also SharePoint 2013 Preview, Lync 2013 Preview and Windows file servers.

Exchange Server 2013 server role architecture changes

One of the most interesting changes is that Exchange server roles have decreased from five down to two. Exchange 2010 included the client access server role, the hub transport server role, the edge transport server role, the mailbox server role and the unified messaging server role. Exchange 2013 consists of only the client access server (CAS) role and the mailbox server role.

Also, in acronym news, the Exchange Administration Center (EAC) has replaced both the Exchange Management Console (EMC) and the short-lived Exchange Control Panel (ECP). According to Microsoft documentation, public folder management is handled via the EAC, so I guess they really aren’t going anywhere.

What are your first impressions of Exchange 2013? Write me at, I’d love to chat and hear your thoughts.

Till next time,


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[...] decade. And the timing couldn’t be better. You’ve got the Exchange 2013 release coming up (the Exchange 2013 preview was recently made available for download), Office/Outlook 2013, and more companies are [...]