Exchange is 10 years old!

Seems like yesterday that Exchange 4.0 hit the market. In March of 1996 Exchange 4.0 was released. I thought I would give you a link for the geeks among you that have been along for the ride and for those that go even further back to ALL-IN-ONE, MailWorks, cc:Mail, IBM PROFS etc.


ITPRO has a great look back if you're interested in taking a look back at the evolution of hardware, Exchange Clients, Mobile devices, OWA, etc.


It's been a whirl wind ride and now we are nearing Beta 2 of Exchange "12"! What will Exchange look like 10 years from now? What features would you want to see (hey why wait - ask for them now!). If Exchange 2016 was ready for release, what features would you be most excited by?


So, take a look back, reflect on where we have been, then put on your thinking caps and tell us what you want to see in the next release and the one after that!


- David Espinoza

Comments (15)
  1. Dan Sheehan says:

    I would be excited by having the ability to shut down external ListServ systems, because the Exchange transport servers would handle DL expansion, including members not in AD, and use a sharepoint website as the repository and even message clearing house.

    Having to use an external system for List management seems to be so redundant these days, but Exchange today cannot provide all the features they do w/o third party add-ons which essentially are stand alone anyway.

    It would also be nice to have the ability to se an Out of Office, and have that temporarily exclude you from non-mandated DLs. So mandated DLs would still come to your mailbox, but less important ones were temporarily unsubscribed.

  2. Jörg-Stefan says:

    Happy birthday – looking forward for the next 10 years!

  3. Brian Kronberg says:

    Have you seen Starship Troopers?  That is Exchange 2016.  Full video, personal databases, composed messages, and all searchable by the government.

  4. Eric says:

    I would look forward to the ability of Exchange 2016 to take care of all the annonying e-mail in my Inbox. Beam me up to Calendar appointments automatically, so I don’t have to bother remembering to go to my meetings and do all the tasks I have in my task folder for me.

  5. Michael Edward Kohlman says:

    I would expect to see the complete elimination of the lines that currently exist between communications types (static text, IM, voice, scheduling, etc…) into single dynamic communications platform.  The beginnings of this are already starting to happen but until standardization between the way these various items talk to each other progress a true merger will be a ways off.

    Server virtualization will be mainstream in 2016 and Exchange will be taking full advantage of that, running nearly as an OS in it’s own right in single session virtual session.  Cluster awareness for Exchange will be no longer needed or neccessary in the sense that this will be handled by the underlying OS layer, which will handle the start/stoppage of virtual servers that hang or need to be taken offline.

    Mail/IM/Voice/Scheduling stores will be both dynamic and replicated; with access to terabytes of storage becoming common-place an Exchange administrator will be able to designate multiple copies of database items replicated over multiple storage volumes over geographically disperse locations.  Load balancing will be acheived by best available/least cost methods, where the response to a data request will be handled by the system with the lowest load and latency times for that request.  Should a virtual Exchange server/data store drop offline, the other desginated servers that have replicates of the date will automatically step in to fill the request.

    The client (Outlook) will continue to become thinner, very possibly becoming a framework that will load the neccessary code to the device in question (PDA/Phone/Laptop/Brain Implant?) to display the information that the device is capable of displaying, offering a more rich environment on more capable systems and a simpler interface on system of lean requirements.  Code updates will be loaded centrally to the Exchange environments and then pushed out to clients.

    Hows that for start?

    – MEK

  6. mike says:

    Whitelists/blacklists for the IMF would be awesome.

  7. Darren says:

    I would like an easy way to set up public folder calendars and be able to use them as resources when I do appointment scheduling.  Is there any way to do this now?  That way I don’t have to set up a whole mailbox just for a shared calendar (e.g. meeting room calendar).  Makes it easier for people to check calendars too.

  8. jorge says:

    Bayesian filtering for the IMF also would be awesome.

  9. Anonymous says:

    Well, although I started this blog with the best intentions, I have been very bad at keeping it regular. …

  10. Anonymous says:

    Since there was no "weekend reading" last week, today’s list is abnormally long. If you don’t have the…

  11. AntGut says:

    Happy Bday. Kinda weird but this will probably be the first release that I don’t test for some military/gov’t agency.

    Exch Kicks Ass


  12. AntGut says:

    Happy Bday. Kinda weird but this will probably be the first release that I don’t test for some military/gov’t agency.

    Exch Kicks Ass


  13. Leo Jacob says:

    I tend to agree with Darren. The current concept of resource scheduling is weak and cumbersome. In order to create a resource, as far as I can tell, at least, I have to create a user account and an associated mailbox, I then have to log in with Outlook to that users mailbox and configure the resource options along with the permissions. So I end up with a dozen user accounts simply to have resources that can be scheduled. I’d really like to see some way to create and configure resource calendars without ever leaving AD Users & Computers… or perhaps Exchange System Manager. Just something that’s all in one program… public folders seem like a good place for that to happen, but I don’t think it has to be that.

  14. Paul Stean says:

    I’d be excited by further exchange / outlook integration to the point where *all* of the users settings were kept synchronized on the exchagne server. Everything from fonts, signatures, even down to the reading pane location and size could be stored centrally. Then when a user uses either another computer or OWA, these settings are all kept up to date to the latest settings they’ve made. This would save countless hours of reconfiguring outlook to users tastes when we have to replace laptops or setup roaming profiles etc.

    And hopefully, by 2016, everyone will have adopted signed messaging, so we can be sure who sent what and when, with no legal ambiguities.

    Also, I’d like to see in Outlook 2007 the Auto Archive feature to be disabled by default, rather than enabled. How many times has someone said (usually after their hard disk has failed), "Where have all my archive folders gone?"

    And finally, a huge, huge thing that needs to be done – the autocomplete database for outlook that fills in email addresses as you type – this should be stored for each user on Exchange. Again, so that when they change between computers or owa, they don’t lose this increasingly critical store of email addresses. RIght now you can’t even move this database between outlooks, let alone recover it from a dead hard disk.

  15. Marc Janssens says:

    It would be nice to have the option to out an out of the office connected to your Full day appointments in your calendar : as an example, you could have planned going to TechEd, and you already know who would be your backup, so you could already set your OOF at that time linked to that appointment, so that the OOF is automatically send during the time of the appointment (in the example while you are at TechEd). same for Full day intervention or visit at a customer, you could set already your oof, so that when you receive a mail, the sender automatically gets notified that you won’t be able to respond immediately. (could also be interesting for shorter appointments e.g. half day appointments).

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