What's new in Exchange 2010 SP2

Four big features and lots of little ones will make Exchange admins feel like they just got their bonus

The Microsoft Exchange team promised a year-end SP2 release, and this week it delivered. The new service pack has four key features:

  • Hybrid Configuration Wizard: There has been a big push to get businesses to move to Office 365 from either their hosted providers or from on-premise deployments that don't really need to be on-premise. Well, some organizations need both on-premise and the cloud-based mailboxes, but until now there was no smooth way to do that. Exchange SP2's hybrid configuration wizard provides that seamless integration between the two environments, as well as moves and configures mailboxes easily through the Exchange Management Console. You have one console for managing both on-premise Exchange and Office 365.

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  • Address book policies: You can now create address book policies to assign to users to specify which Global Address List (GAL), offline address book, room list, and address lists are visible to them. Many organizations run a single GAL, but there are times when companies require two or more. These policies simplify that scenario.
  • Outlook Web App Mini: This lightweight browser-based client is similar to the Outlook Mobile Access client from Exchange 2003. It's meant for mobile operating systems, so it should be easier to use than the standard OWA Web page, and it provides all the basic OWA functionality.
  • Cross-site silent redirection: This behind-the-scenes features allows a Client Access Server to redirect to another CAS server -- even one in another Active Directory site -- if the client request is better served by that other CAS server.

Exchange 2010 SP2 also has a host of smaller enhancements:

  • Mailbox replication service: Two new parameters have been added to the new-WebServicesVirtualDirectory and Set-WebServicesVirtualDirectory cmdlets to remove the manual configuration when moving mailboxes to another forest.
  • Mailbox auto-mapping: Exchange 2010 SP2 now lets admins turn off the automapping aspect of mailboxes that have full access permissions to others mailboxes through the Add-MailboxPermission cmdlets.
  • Multivalue custom attributes: Five new multivalue custom attributes let you store additional information about a mail recipient.
  • Litigation hold: Exchange 2010 lets you place a legal hold on mailbox, so users cannot delete anything in their mailbox or their archive. With SP2, an admin can bypass the hold using a new IgnoreLegalHold switch, which is available through several cmdlets relating to the mailbox or mail user.

What's next? Exchange 2010 SP3? Or perhaps we'll start to hear some buzz about the next major rendition of Exchange.

This article, "What's new in Exchange 2010 SP2," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Read more of J. Peter Bruzzese's Enterprise Windows blog and follow the latest developments in Windows at InfoWorld.com. For the latest business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.

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