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The top Exchange Server news stories of 2014

We look back at five Exchange Server news stories that made the biggest impact with readers this year.

This year has been filled with plenty of Exchange Server news. Admins had to keep up with Microsoft's updates and Exchange releases while grasping how the company's "cloud first" strategy will affect them in the future.

Office 365 was a hot topic in 2014, as Microsoft delivered a host of new features for the cloud service and received some criticism for how it handled multiple outages. readers also got a glimpse into the controversy over the IRS' lost email and how something similar could happen to any Exchange environment. In this feature, we look at those stories and more to round up the most popular Exchange Server news stories of 2014.

Office 365 outages emphasize importance of cloud monitoring

When Office 365 suffered two outages this summer, customers criticized Microsoft for its lack of communication about the service interruptions. Experts emphasized the importance of using monitoring systems to protect against outages, but also speculated that Microsoft would listen to criticism to improve reporting and the frequency of future communication.

Lost IRS email controversy

The IRS faces an ongoing controversy after it revealed it lost three years' worth of email during a hard drive crash in 2011. Industry experts were doubtful about the supposed cause and the IRS' inability to retrieve the lost data. The controversy is a good reminder for organizations to ensure they have compliance plans in place to recover deleted information, experts said.

OWA upgrade will 'Clutter' Office 365

Microsoft unveiled its Clutter feature in a keynote demonstration at its Exchange Conference in March, to a lukewarm response. Attendees were cautious of the feature, which automatically removes email it deems unimportant from the inbox, because they prefer to maintain control over messages themselves.

Office 365 migrations aren't a pain in the IaaS

Migrating to Office 365 can be time-consuming, but SkyKick's Enterprise Migration Suite offers IT pros a way to quickly move thousands of end users to the platform. The tool includes Outlook and Exchange assistants, an enterprise planner, and migration sync.

IBM Domino sashays into the enterprise social

IBM has been quietly regaining its position in the social business market with Domino and Notes, but the company still has a long way to go if it wants to catch up to Microsoft and Google. By working with business partners who have more face-to-face meetings with small and medium-sized IT shops, IBM could help its cause, experts said.

Dig Deeper on Office 365 and Microsoft SaaS setup and management

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What was the biggest Exchange Server news story of 2014?
Between the fall-out of the 2011 IRS email scandal that came from Exchange and the addition of the watered down "Clutter" feature, 2014 Exchange news certainly was not dull. Really, the movement of Microsoft to do damage control in 2014 in response to the 2011 IRS email malfunctions is most likely the biggest news story of 2014 for the beleaguered Exchange service. Clutter was supposed to help remedy this but was too mediocre for most.