Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 is the centerpiece of Microsoft's new technology for fault-tolerant, secure, unified communications. In comparison to Exchange Server 2007 or Exchange Server 2003, Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 is less expensive to deploy and support, easier to manage and expand, richer in features, faster, less vulnerable to single-point failure, more extensive in its support of mobile workers, and better able to safeguard sensitive information and resist malicious attacks.
Now that Microsoft has terminated support for Exchange Server 2003, businesses of all sizes have good reason to upgrade to Exchange Server 2010. DCI’s Microsoft Gold-certified consulting engineers can help you assess the value of Exchange Server 2010 for your business and can help you plan and carry out a smooth migration to Exchange Server 2010 that will offer fast return on investment by improving your productivity, lowering the cost of equipment and service, and consolidating your vital communications technologies.
Exchange Server 2010 offers built-in and easy-to-manage features that deliver high availability, fast disaster recovery, continuous automatic archiving, and lower cost of ownership. A major innovation in Exchange 2010 is the database availability group (DAG) structure, a collection of mailbox servers that continually replicate databases and automatically recover from disk, server, and datacenter failures. You can configure a DAG with as many as 16 mailbox servers with failover times of less than 30 seconds. System uptime is further enhanced in Exchange Server 2010 by the ability of administrators to move mailboxes with virtually no interruption of service.
Exchange 2010 Uses Database Availability Groups (DAGs) for Continuous Backup and Fast Failover
Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 allows you to configure redundant servers without the need to purchase, set up, and maintain complicated clustering platforms. You can deploy a fully redundant Exchange Server 2010 solution with just two servers rather than the minimum four servers required by Exchange 2007. You can also create a site failover solution that incorporates geographically dispersed datacenters to achieve enterprise-class resiliency. Because you can manage your Exchange 2010 DAG configuration remotely from within Exchange, rather than from a specialized cluster server platform, administration is simple and inexpensive.
Exchange 2010 adds support for the Serial ATA (SATA) hard disk interface included in virtually all desktop PCs shipping today. Because Exchange 2010 requires only about one tenth as much disk I/O as Exchange Server 2003, you can use commodity disk drives and still get high performance. You can now integrate a high availability storage configuration with Exchange Server that includes storage area networks (SANs), direct attached SAS drives, or desktop quality drives.
By making it affordable to provide your workers with large mailboxes, Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 increases your profitability in a variety of ways. Administrative overhead shrinks and user productivity grows because less time is wasted dealing with mailboxes that are exceeding their capacity allotments. Large mailboxes also open the door to further cost savings and better business results because they permit the adoption of unified communications. As an example, Exchange 2010 includes an enhanced voice mail solution that allows you to receive voice messages in your inbox for easy retrieval, response, and management. Exchange 2010 also offers voice-to-text conversion that saves workers time sorting through and responding to email. Microsoft estimates that businesses can save as much as 40% by migrating from their legacy voice mail system to Exchange 2010. Incorporating voice mail in your Exchange mailbox also allows your workers to detect and respond to business-critical voice messages faster to give you a competitive edge.
In addition to supporting Microsoft's standard email client software, Office Outlook and Exchange 2010 includes a dramatically improved version of Outlook Web App (formerly called Outlook Web Access) that allows users to access and manage their e-mail, voice mail, IM, and SMS text messages on most desktop computers, notebooks, handheld PCs, and Smartphones and from any major browser. OWA offers a variety of new usability, collaboration, and mobile data synchronization features and now operates seamlessly on Apple Safari and Mozilla Firefox to provide a rich messaging experience to virtually any user.
Improvements to Outlook Web App include the ability to display all messages on a single page. Users can scroll through all of the messages in a folder without having to pause periodically to click on a page advance button. This makes it easier to locate critical messages or conversations and reduces the chances that an important message will be overlooked. Another OWA improvement is that messages from a conversation thread are automatically grouped. The new Conversation View saves time and reduces the chances of overlooking important messages by allowing users to see related messages in context and making it easy to find the most recent message in a thread. The conversation group can be managed as though it were a single message for saving, moving, or deletion, and can span multiple folders.
Outlook Web App also introduces improvements in the area of texting through SMS message synchronization. By using Microsoft's ActiveSync you can send SMS text messages from Outlook Web App. You can also use your OWA inbox to read any SMS messages that have been sent via EAS to your Smartphone or other mobile handheld device.
Other new features of Outlook Web App include:
Exchange Server 2010 is central to the Microsoft Lync Server solution which in its fullest deployment enables consolidated access through your inbox to email, telephony, IM, voice mail, faxes, calendaring, and conferencing. When you use Exchange 2010 in conjunction with Lync Server, Windows Server 2008 R2, you can replace your legacy PBX, instant messaging, and audio/video/Web conferencing systems with Microsoft's integrated, software-driven communications solution.
Exchange Server 2007 made it possible to route voice mail messages from your PBX to your Exchange inbox. Exchange Server 2010 introduces features that allow you to replace your legacy voice mail system altogether. Improvements in voice mail support include:
The unified communications features of Exchange Server 2010 combined with Office Communications Server can improve the health of your business by facilitating internal and external collaboration, shortening project and sales cycles, and improving your responsiveness to customer issues. According to Microsoft, unified communications can enhance your profitability by lowering travel costs by up to 40%, cutting as much as 40% off telephony and conferencing service expenses, reducing costs for messaging and voice mail by up to 40%, and shrinking administrative overhead.
Microsoft and other software publishers and managed services providers offer an abundance of solutions for protecting email from viruses and spam, and DCI's network security consultants can help you select and deploy anti-virus and anti-spam (AV/AS) technology suitable for your IT environment. Exchange Server 2010 includes new features that help businesses safeguard sensitive information from being leaked or intercepted due to poor definition, implementation, or enforcement of company information protection and control policies.
With Exchange 2010, you can automatically encrypt messages, route them to additional recipients, hold delivery pending review, block them altogether, or allow messages to pass while adding new headers or disclaimers to avoid liability problems. You can apply these controls based on the identity of specified senders, recipients, or distribution lists. You can also manage message flow based on defined keywords or common patterns, such as credit card or social security numbers that occur within the contents of the messages or attachments.
A variety of new features in Exchange 2010 are designed to support regulatory compliance. A new retention policy framework allows administrators and individual users to automate the archiving and expiration of messages and email folders. An easy-to-use web interface allows cross-mailbox searches to expedite legal discovery. These new capabilities help organizations achieve and verify compliance with standards mandated by government agencies, industry organizations, or business partners.
Exchange 2010 incorporates an array of additional capabilities to simplify administration, increase performance and availability, and improve productivity. Important additional features include:
DCI's Exchange consultants can help you assess the business value of Exchange 2010 for your company and assist in designing and implementing a cost-effective plan for migrating to Exchange 2010 from Exchange 2007, Exchange 2003, or Exchange 2000. DCI's Microsoft Gold certified engineers can carry out an Exchange 2010 upgrade that minimizes business disruption, enhances your messaging security, dependability, and performance, reduces your ongoing costs for equipment, administration, and technical support, and improves the productivity of your workers. For complex upgrades that include multiple sites and communications technologies, DCI offers the experience to carry out a successful upgrade on schedule and within budget.
A key to DCI's success is the ability to deliver world-class consulting nationwide at prices that small businesses can afford. This is possible because of DCI's expertise with providing remote consulting and technical support services whenever circumstances allow. DCI's seasoned team of support professionals, which includes Cisco-certified network engineers, can work with your IT staff to eliminate wasted travel expenses and finish projects rapidly. When the situation calls for on-site support, DCI can also dispatch technical experts to every state.
DCI can provide a range of services to help you obtain the full benefits of migrating to Exchange Server 2010. DCI's consultants can help you integrate Exchange Server 2010 with Active Directory to support your security and compliance policies, show you economical ways to configure Exchange 2010 for high availability, develop a disaster recovery plan that includes the continuous backup and fast restoration capabilities of Exchange 2010, and provide Smartphone consulting including BlackBerry support services to make sure your mobile users have seamless access to all of Exchange 2010's messaging features.
For small businesses in the Phoenix area or anywhere in the U.S., DCI's Microsoft-certified consultants can provide affordable online network assistance and professional consulting support for the entire array of Microsoft .NET servers, Windows Server 2008, and Windows 2003 Server. DCI's migration, installation, update, and support capabilities include network architecture, configuration, and administration outsourcing for project analysis and documentation, on-site and off-site technical help and network troubleshooting, Help Desk Services, comprehensive security expertise, turn-key outsourcing, and network and application server hosting options.