Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 2 available in Q3 2009


Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 is the industry’s leading server for e-mail, calendaring and unified messaging. Exchange Server 2007 is the foundation for a dynamic and holistic unified communications experience, and has been designed to meet the challenges and address the messaging needs of today’s businesses. Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 2 (SP2) enables customers to increase their operational efficiency and it sets the foundation for the transition to Exchange Server 2010, which is expected to be available in the second half of 2009. A public beta of Exchange Server 2010 is available for download at http://www.microsoft.com/exchange/2010.

Customer Benefits
Key new features of Exchange Server 2007 SP2 unveiled today include:

  • Enhanced Auditing – New Exchange auditing events and audit log repository enable Exchange administrators to more easily audit the activities occurring on their Exchange servers. It allows the right balance of granularity, performance, and easy access to audited events via a dedicated audit log repository. This simplifies the auditing process and makes review of audited events easier by segregating audited events in a dedicated location.
  • Exchange Volume Snapshot Backup Functionality A new backup plug-in has been added to the product that will enable customers to create Exchange backups when a backup is invoked through the Windows Server 2008 Backup tool. Exchange Server 2007 didn’t have this capability on Windows Server 2008 and additional solutions were required to perform this task.
  • Dynamic Active Directory Schema Update and Validation – The dynamic AD schema update and validation feature allows for future schema updates to be dynamic deployed as well as proactively preventing conflicts whenever a new property is added to the AD schema. Once this capability is deployed it will enable easier management of future schema updates and will prevent support issues when adding properties that don’t exist in the AD schema.
  • Public Folder Quota Management – SP2 enables a consistent way to manage quotas by improving the current PowerShell cmdlets to perform quota management tasks.
  • Centralized Organizational Settings – SP2 introduces new PowerShell option that enable centralized management of many of the Exchange organization settings.
  • Named Properties cmdlets – SP2 enables Exchange administrators to monitor their named property usage per database.
  • New User Interface for Managing Diagnostic Logging– SP2 enables Exchange administrators to easily configure and manage diagnostic logging from within the Exchange Management Console.

Pricing and Availability

SP2 is available at no additional cost to customers that have purchased Exchange Server 2007. SP2 is slated for release in the third quarter of 2009. More information on Exchange Server 2007 SP2 will be available on the Exchange Server Web site at http://www.microsoft.com/exchange on the release date.

FAQ

Q: Is Exchange 2007 Service Pack 1 a pre-requisite for Service Pack 2?

No. SP2 can be installed in any of the following modalities:

a. A fresh install with Exchange Server 2007 SP2
b. In-place upgrade from Exchange Server 2007 to SP2
c. In-place upgrade from Exchange Server 2007 SP1 to SP2

Q: Will the Service Pack 2 be required for Exchange 2007 to interoperate with Exchange Server 2010?

Yes, Exchange Server 2007 SP2 is required to interoperate with Exchange Server 2010 and to enable the transition of services to the latest version of the product.

Q: Is Microsoft planning any change to its service pack support policy for customers who are not planning to deploy this Service Pack 2?

Microsoft mainstream support policy for Exchange Server 2007 remains unchanged. Microsoft will continue providing support and Update Rollups to customers running SP1 for 12 months after SP2 ships. See our Service Pack Support Policy for more details.

Q: Can customers decide to skip Service Pack 2 if they are not planning to deploy Exchange 2010 and wait for the next version of the product?

Given the benefits SP2 provides, Microsoft recommends customers deploy SP2, so they can immediately benefit from the operational efficiency improvements and Update Rollups that generally address hotfixes, security and critical updates for the product. Ultimately it is customer’s decision on the timing to apply the service pack and Microsoft will support those customers in alignment with the Service Pack Support Policy.

Q: Is this the first time that you’ve required customers to adopt the most recent service pack before they can upgrade to the new version of Exchange?

Customers will be able to apply the pre-requisites for Exchange Server 2010 independently of SP2. However, SP2 will be the minimal requirement for interoperability scenarios of the two products.

 


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Comments (55)
  1. Nitin Gupta says:

    Great, the interoperability factor was a major concern for everyone…….waiting for SP2 :-) !

    Cheers

    Nitin Gupta (gupnit)

  2. John Abbott says:

    Does this mean there will be no RU8 for Exchange 2007 SP1?  Or are these issues independent of each other?

  3. Henryk Gacka says:

    Can you apply the SP2 if you still running mixed mode:

    Exchange 2003 with Exchange 2007 SP1 CCR?

  4. Exchange says:

    Hi John,

    We will be releasing RU8 for Exchange 2007 SP1 soon, stay tuned for a blog post on this upcoming rollup

    Thanks!

  5. Exchange says:

    By the way:

    1. the upcoming blog post will include details on our long-term servicing plan related to SP1

    2. All fixes for RU8 will be included in SP2

    thanks!

  6. Great news! :) Looking forward to Exchange 2010, but always good to see you continuing to not only improve but expand on the current generation product as well.

  7. Martin says:

    Hello

    Will SP2 extend or update the schema?

    Thanks

    Martin

  8. Mike says:

    VSS backup

    Will this be in RU8 or will it first appear in sp2

    Thanks

  9. Exchange says:

    Martin – yes. We will have more documentation around this as time comes.

    Mike – no, backup will be in SP2, but not RU8. There are additional files that are required for this functionality to work, and this is something that we did not want to do in a Rollup.

  10. MEC2 says:

    Oh good – more shell cmdlets for software running on a platform called "Windows". The shell should be an add-on for a completely functioning admin GUI, not a substitute for one.

  11. Peter says:

    Hello

    And Powershell V2 ?

  12. The Truth says:

    Wow, quite a claim that Exchange 2007 …"is the industry’s leading server for [……..]…….unified messaging"

    I guess facts are not of any consequence when you are ramming your next product down everyone’s throat.  You are not the industry’s leading server for unified messaging unless of course you are narrowing your scope of considering for  your own branding.

    Exchange 2007 is great.  Don’t get me wrong.  However, this two year release of new products in order to fill your coffers is a bad idea.  

    You have not had an in place upgrade scenario in quite a while.  In this economy, asking Executive Management to fork out large sums of cash for yet another upgrade just …’ain’t gonna fly’.  

    Fix the issues in 2007 before forcing 2010 (Issues = Name Props, PF replication, Powershell shortfalls, SCR, etc)

  13. snefi says:

    Hello

    Exchange 2007sp1 support  on Server 2008 SP2 ?

  14. Jason says:

    wow.. surprised at the haters of Ex2007.  Personally I like the powershell then gui added on top.  I am and have always been a widows guy, but this change to shell first opened the minds of so many "big" email admins that were used to only unix/linux email.  I think it was a great way to bridge the exe’s asking for outlook functionality with the admin’s need for scripting repetative tasks.  I still have a beef with MS on other issue (memory limitations.. dare i say vista?), but well done in Ex2007 and I’m looking forward to 2010!

  15. Underscored says:

    Will SP2 address the blocking of an exchange 2007

    install where the root forest name or domain has an undserscore

    in it.  This worked until SP1 was rolled out. Kind of like

    the single name space issue.

    Thanks.

  16. Ed Beck says:

    Underscored: could you contact me about your question?

    Please send mail to

    EdBeck AT microsoft DOT com

  17. M says:

    This is addressed "The Truth", i think what they are saying is thats its the leading in the industry that does all of these in one product.

  18. Hawry says:

    Any ideas why MS has not provided any sloution for restoring exchange 2003 mailbxoes in exchnage 2007 environment. How MS expect customer using exchange 2003 for years to be able to restore mailboxes after they migrated to exchange 2007.

  19. Dankwax says:

    Do you recommend customers wait for SP2 or apply RU8 first and then SP2 when released?

  20. PowershellRocks says:

    MEC2, you said:

    "Oh good – more shell cmdlets for software running on a platform called "Windows". The shell should be an add-on for a completely functioning admin GUI, not a substitute for one."

    I think moving the bulk of EX2007 management to powershell is one of the best things MS ever did. Finally, those of us who need to perform repetitive and bulk tasks have a very powerful shell in which to do so. A fringe benefit to "Windows guys" is that they are finally being forced to actually learn how exchange/AD works instead of just "pointing and clicking". Instead of bashing MS for this I suggest you take a step back, buy yourself a good book on powershell for Exchange and I believe you will soon be singing its praises as well.

  21. Exchange Admin says:

    My exchange server 2007 is currently SP1 rollup 6. Shall I wait to apply the SP2 directly instead of RU7 & RU8?

    What will you suggest?

    Many Thanks,

    Arun

  22. josrex says:

    Is Exchange Server 2007 with SP2 can be installed on Windows Server 2008 R2? Or Exchange 2007 SP1 supported in upcoming Windows Server 2008 R2?

  23. Frustrated Exchange Admin says:

    so what does "Exchange Volume Snapshot Backup Functionality" mean in an earth man’s language?

  24. Exchange says:

    Frustrated Exchange Admin,

    This might help:

    http://msexchangeteam.com/archive/2009/05/13/451311.aspx

    Basically – you will not be able to do streaming backups, but instead only VSS, to a disk or a network share. You will be able to backup only on "drive" (volume) level – so every dvolume that has Exchange data you want backed up will need to be backed up. But you will be able to restore at Application level.

  25. PowerShell SPDLT! says:

    Powershell has made a lot of things so much easier!  Invest a little time in learning it and if you have a creative mind you’ll think of tons of ways to use it to make your life a lot easier.

  26. PowerShizzle says:

    I had to make a universal change to over 5000 mailboxes. It literally took 10 minutes with PowerShell.  I couldn’t live without it.  Besides… I think you’ll find more and more M$ products going the way Exchange did, that being a limited GUI sitting on top of the all mighty powershell.  It’s definitely worth learning.

  27. ChuckD says:

    Does anyone know….will the 32bit management tools which currently allow for remote management of 64bit sp1 work for 64bit sp2?

  28. Exchange says:

    ChuckD,

    I am not 100% sure that I get what you are asking but – if you are asking if there will be a 32 bit build of Exchange 2007 SP2 – then the answer is yes. You can then use that to update your 32 bit MGMT tools to SP2.

  29. ChuckD says:

    yes, that is what I’m asking.  we currently have a win2003 box with the 32bit sp1 mgmt tools installed, managing our exchange 2007 sp1 server which resides on win2008 box.  a colleague recently emailed me the following:  MS recent annoucement… The 32 bit version of Exchange 2007 SP2 or Exchange 2010 will not available for testing. It will require a 64-bit operating system.

    although I have not been able to verify this.

  30. MEC2 says:

    Oh good, a response from a cmdlet nerdlet who thinks we all need to wrap up with a good book to embrace extended ridiculous cmdline nincompoopery – now I get to type in Get-MailboxStatistics | Sort-Object TotalItemSize -Descending | ft DisplayName,@{label="TotalItemSize(MB)";expression={$_.TotalItemSize.Value.ToMB()}},ItemCount just to see what one could see easily in the Exchange Management window. If you cannot see what an ass-backward, inbred change this is, I cannot help you. The Powershell is fine for making batch changes, but it is a woeful interface for typical administrative management in small businesses. I shouldn’t need to go get a friggin book in order to see a mailbox size for a user. It’s called *Windows* for a reason. It appears mail admins stuck in dead end jobs in the same cubicle all day really enjoy big batch runs with powershell (and that’s fine, nobody is arguing to remove it), but in the world of day to day administrating where we have a life and things to do, returning to the arcane world of 300 command entries for simple tasks is retrograde mouthbreathing insanity. Most of us want to be able to send, and receive, email. That’s it. It’s JUST EMAIL dude, and it shouldn’t be that big a chore. But Exchange 2007 is. MS has lost it’s way on this one.

  31. Matt says:

    I think the like<>hate powershell arguments are coming from two different camps.  The lovers of powershell are coming from very large companies where many hundreds or thousands of mailboxes are being managed.  The vast majority of GUI users are from smaller companies where IT personnel must wear many hats and not just e-mail hats.

    I work at a company with just 125 employess across 5 sites, but I am the only engineer.  I have a database guy I work with, but he has the luxury of only having to manage his ONE software package.  

    I see value in powershell, but due to my very heavy workload I just don’t have the time to learn the many many powershell commands.  I loved Exchange 2003 System Manager a lot more than the Exchange 2007 Management Console.  So many of the small things I need to do I can find in the GUI relatively quickly whereas I need to resort to technet to find the right powershell command.

    Microsoft needs to remeber a that a VERY good GUI is required for people like me.  I am just as likely to jump to something else that is easier to manage if the situation does not improve on the GUI side.  That is where Microsoft made it’s bread and butter.  

    Many other products web based admin tools are better than the Exchange Management Console.  It was almost as if the GUI was an afterthought.

    Microsoft needs a consistent develpment path that does not reinvent the wheel with each new version iteration.  Don’t forget us smaller guys who are too big for SBS and too small for dedicated e-mail techs learning Exchange the powershell way.

  32. Tyler says:

    Matt and others – I completely agree with you on the Powershell issues.  Here is where my concern comes in.  Microsoft Exchange has ALWAYS been a powerful mail server with several capabilities.  Many organizations have slapped in Exchange because it was convient.  It interops with many existing systems and just plain fits.  Coming from a consultant role, I hear the concerns on PowerShell.  Microsoft still gave the GUI and *most* tasks can be completed in the GUI.  Whether you work for a small or large company, Exchange advanced tasks should be understood.  If you could point and click you may not understand what is being done.  PowerShell brings two things to the table:  Advanced Capabilities of Exchange by taking it farther doing more, and the second thing is automating and completing repeative tasks and streamlining work.  Anyone who wears multiple roles REALLY should look into PowerShell.  It is fairly easy to learn after working with it, and the potentials you have will save you lots of time down the road.  Take time now to learn and you’ll be ahead of the industry, a leader, and you’ll be happy with your results.  I was in the same boat years ago as you.  Now I live by it.  I can do most anything very quickly.

  33. MEC2 says:

    Matt has stated concisely and dispassionately what I apparently could not and get by the moderator…

    There are too many comments from folks who think we need to learn arcane Powershell cmdlets for reasons OTHER than administrating our server. I don’t need to understand the relationship between AD and Exchange, I don’t need a more thorough understanding of how the system interoperates, what I need is a system that SENDS and RECEIVES email that I can administer in a way that is *not* more arcane than Exchange 5.0 was. I have supported at dozens of clients Exchange as far back as 5.0 and every iteration in between. Exchange 2007 has by far the most unwieldy mangled interface possible. While I don’t miss the days of Exchange 5.0 x. addressing and tendency to hump the bunk on the priv.edb, everything I needed to do was available in an intuitive format. This is missing from Exchange 2007.

    Nobody is arguing for either or. I think Powershell scripting is a great Exchange feature. It is not, however, a substitute for a full powered GUI for ease of administration.

    I would have appreciated they spend more time creating an in-place upgrade path for Exchange (embarrassing that you cannot upgrade in place – simply embarrassing) or how about an exmerge that handles unicode PST files and isn’t having to try and piecemeal a mailbox import/export/restore in 2GB chunks?

    Read around the web – alot of folks are very displeased with the band-aid GUI Exchange 2007 has. I stopped updating clients to 2007 after the second one was as miserable as the first.

    When people say they “hate” the powershell, what they hate is that they have no way to do tasks they used to be able to do without it. Why can I not see mailbox sizes in the GUI? That is RIDICULOUS.

    Powershell – should be an add on. The full functioning GUI should not be.

  34. Scott says:

    I agree with Matt I too work at a company with just 125 employess and i have to system, Network, Helpdesk, and DB stuff….I am not looking for ever mass tool in power shell to be GUI But IT should Cover most of them

    Also Will they ever let Outlook to Conect to different Exchange Servers at the same time. We have users the contract to us that Contect up to Three different exchange severs a day. It would be nice to beable to have outlook conect to many different exchange systems at same time…..

  35. Stefan says:

    @Matt and followers:

    I am in charge of a very small company (below 50 employess) but still feel that microsofts way to open their products for scripting as done in w2K8 and e2k7 is more than simply "nice and helpful".

    I use ps cmdlets nearly every week for basic reporting / monitoring tasks – for me it is worth the learning even with my limited view of an "one box environment".

    I have a lot of linux and solaris servers here – may be that microsoft scripting capabilities are that welcome for me for that reason.

    I just wanted to point out that the size of a company has nothing to do with the need of scripting tools for me – but the "size of knowledge" has.

  36. Rino says:

    Great NTBackup will now be supported! :-)

  37. Marius says:

    Now we are in Q3. Any news about SP2 release?

  38. J says:

    looking forward to various sp2 fixe’s and auditing enhancements.

    For people that struggle learning powershell, there is some 3rd party gui tools that can Admin AD and exchange 2007 for you.

    Powershell is easier than bash/perl scripting as theres great help system and all the cmdlets ready to use, one area thats annoyed me is output (stdout) to console screen – formatting doesn’t always work.

  39. Priit says:

    What does that Centralized Organizational Settings include? Can we set defaults so that OWA, POP and IMAP can be disabled by default when creating new users after we upgrade to SP2?

  40. Scott says:

    I was wondering if there is any more information on a more exact release date for SP2? I along with many others I would assume are very anxious to get SP2.

  41. Suresh says:

    Is there a way to find who deletes a message in mailbox in Exchange 2007 SP2 (when the mailbox is being accssed by more than one person)?

  42. Webster says:

    Will SP2 prevent the CAS and or HT roles from being installed on the Web Server versions of 2008 or 2003?

  43. Webster says:

    Or will SP2 be prevented from installing on the Web Server version?

  44. DL says:

    Does anyone know when E2K7 SP2 will come?

  45. Troy says:

    Let me chime in on the Gui versus Powershell thing. I am a former longtime Netware/Groupwise admin, having just migrated from Groupwise 7 to Exchange 2007. Let me tell you a thing about disjointed admin tools. NWAdmin, Console One, text config files, apache and tomcat config files, IManager. Novell had a lovely habit of changing management tools all the time and you had to go to some tools to do certain things, and some tools for others, so I can relate to this. One thing I hate about the EMC/Gui is the fact that you just cannot do (MANY!!) certain changes from the EMC. You have to find the powershell command and run it from there. I am talking about obscure changes you hardly ever have to do (think: anything in set-webservicesvirtualdirectory, certificates, etc). This is kind of frustrating because these simply are NOT areas where powershell would make things EASIER to manage through scripting, they are one-off changes. Another thing is the seeming inconsistency of where to use -ID or -Server when setting or getting paramaters. Also things like checking LCR or SCR replication, there should be a gui way to check replication status rather than having to do a get-storagegroupcopystatus for each server. There should also be a GUI way to fail this over, there is a GLARING lack of documentation and ability to do ANYTHING SCR via the GUI. This really needs to be addressed and I hope you guys did this in at least 2010 exchange, if not, you really missed the boat…

    That being said, I really like Exchange 2007 from an administrative perspective. It is very stable, fast. Just some of the admin tasks which you should NOT have to go to the command line to do, you can ONLY do from powershell, which is absolutely rediculous. I could give you 20+ examples. For these, it seems to me this was a situation where the developers were just lazy…

  46. PowerShell SPDLT! says:

    MEC2, instead of typing in your line ‘Get-MailboxStatistics | Sort-Object TotalItemSize -Descending | ft DisplayName,@{label="TotalItemSize(MB)";expression={$_.TotalItemSize.Value.ToMB()}},ItemCount’ every time and then complaining about it put this in your profile.

    function stats {

     your whole command

    }

    Now, in a shell just type stats.

    Don’t fight technology, make it work for you!

    Any task that requires you perform it multiple times, like checking storagegroupcopystatus, you can write a function to do it all, then type in one command.  I have a shell that cycles through on a regular basis that performs the test-mapiconnectivity then searches the results for errors and then emails me.  You can easily write a function that’ll go through every server and then check the copy status and then alert you of anything out of the ordinary.  You can put it all in a function so you type a command or do what I do and just have it run on a schedule so you don’t have to do a thing.

    Scrooge McDuck once said "Work smarter, not harder."  Powershell really lets you do this.  My saying is "Work hard to be lazy."  Work to write a good script that’ll take the work off of your hands.

    With SP2, will the export-mailbox still have the same limitations?  32-bit machine with Outlook installed.

  47. Jykke says:

    Does SP2 (OWA) support changing passwords that have already expired or user accounts that are configured to change their password the next time the user logs on.

    http://msexchangeteam.com/archive/2008/12/09/450238.aspx

  48. Wayne says:

    Will SP2 have support for Powershell V2.0?

  49. Abhi says:

    Is there any specific release date yet on this?

  50. Glenn says:

    Looking eagerly to SP2 release…will it be this month?

    -Glenn

  51. Glenn says:

    Will SP2 include a ‘Whitelist’ feature that allow us to easily add & remove domains?

  52. Ilya_f says:

    In addition to new "Public Folder Quota Management" – is it going to appear cmdlets that will allow to create different types of PFs? For example calendar or tasks PF. Currently I can create only PS with post items using EMS and it is big problem for me.

    Thank you,

    Ilya.

  53. Glenn says:

    An excellent example of a script to enable ‘Whitelist’:

    http://gsexdev.blogspot.com/2009/02/content-filtering-system-whitelist-gui.html

    This should be built into Exchange!!!

  54. Thom says:

    I agree with MEC2 coming from a mostly pure Exchange background (alot of OCS now also). I have worked in Exchange PSS, consulting and internal IT for mainly very large companies (over 100k seats)and I hate HAVING to use powershell for most things. It is just not intuative like a GUI and makes a lot of simple things more complex as mentioned in other posts here. PS should be a compliment to the GUI so you can do things that could be easier in a batch but not the primary way of administration. I love learning something new but the technet and other documentation is not always completly acurate for the commands (missing an -ID criteria, etc..) and can get very frustrating when just trying to do some things that have beenshould be easy now in a GUI. I am guessing it was either a code freeze time frame issue or a way to keep developement costs down and not just a lazy dev team.

    I hope MS will take the feedback they are hearing from lots of people who have championed Exchange for years as completing the GUI will not hurt the product, only improve it.

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