Exchange On-Premises TAP Program accepting nominations


We are excited to announce that the Exchange On-Premises TAP Program is accepting nominations! 

The purpose of this post is to provide you with the opportunity to nominate your company for the Exchange On-Premises Technology Adoption Program (TAP) Program. Joining the Exchange On-Premises TAP Program provides companies with a number of advantages, such as providing input and feedback for future releases, developing a close relationship with the Exchange Product Team; receiving pre-release information about Exchange, and more. 

Exchange On-Premises TAP Program Overview

The Exchange On-Premises TAP Program is designed to validate the next version of Exchange Server by having customers test deployments of pre-release builds of Exchange in their own production environment. This gives participants the opportunity to provide feedback to the Exchange product development team. Customers in the TAP Program are provided free support from Microsoft Customer Services and Support (CSS) for issues encountered with Exchange. Additional information on the TAP Program is discussed in this blog entry from a number of years ago, which is still quite relevant today: http://msexchangeteam.com/archive/2004/12/29/343848.aspx

What's in it for TAP Program customers?

  • A close relationship with the Exchange product team.
  • An opportunity to provide feedback on future releases of Exchange directly to the product team.
  • Technical conference calls with members of the product team.
  • Production grade pre-release builds of Exchange Server.
  • Access to free CSS Support for Exchange issues for the duration of the Exchange TAP Program (CSS support is 24/7 for any critical issues found in production).
  • A head start in the next deployment cycle, taking advantage of new and enhanced features available in the next version of Exchange Server.

What do I have to commit to in order to participate in the Exchange TAP Program?

  • Jump through a few legal hoops (signing some legal documents such as an NDA).
  • Go through a few steps that will help assure easy communication between you and Microsoft (details will be provided when applicable)
  • Deploy pre-release versions of Exchange Server in your production environment.
  • Commit to timely response of surveys and feedback requests from Microsoft.
  • Commit to providing resources for TAP Program activities for the duration of the program – people/time as well as machines needed for testing and production, and associated operating system software licenses.
  • Provide us with deployment plans, including details of network topologies and additional reports, as applicable.  (Required before we can give production approval for the pre-release code.)

What makes a good TAP Program candidate?

  • Willing to dedicate the resources (people/time and machines) to testing pre-release builds of Exchange in production. We find that we get some of our best feedback through production deployments, and so we will prioritize nominations from customers willing to be aggressive in their production rollouts higher.
  • Responsive to our requests for feedback, including responding to surveys and attending conference calls and participating in a distribution list.
  • Gives constructive criticism with context – don't just stop at "I don’t like feature X," provide us more information like "Here's why feature X won’t work for my Exchange environment, and here's why I think doing it another way would be better."
  • Gives feedback even when not requested. We may not have sent out a survey or had a call about a topic, but if something about the product is problematic for you– or you love it! :-) – we want to know.

Summary

If you feel your Company fits what we are looking for, you can nominate yourself by filling out this form:

On-premises TAP Program self-nomination form

Note: This form is located on an Office 365 site and is for our business customers to self-nominate for inclusion in future Office pre-release programs. If you are a Microsoft representative and would like to nominate a customer you are working with, please contact us directly and we will provide appropriate guidance.

All nominations, internal and external, are reviewed and screened prior to acceptance into a program. No customers are allowed access to any pre-release downloads or information until all legal paperwork is properly executed. Nomination does not mean acceptance… not all nominees will be chosen for a program.

Thank you!

David Espinoza
Senior Program Manager, Customer Experience Team

Comments (21)
  1. Anonymous says:

    Exchange On-Premises TAP Program accepting nominations
    thankssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss

  2. Anonymous says:

    @DavidEsp: David, when is the evaluation of applications expected? Will we be told if we’re rejected?

  3. Anonymous says:

    I work for a "small" company, 20 people, but our competence level is very high on Microsoft Technologies. We are in the Lync TAP until OCS. I remember that the requirements to be in the Exchange TAP are a little bit higher, in terms of users involved,
    is still like that or we can candidate ourselves for the Exchange TAP?

  4. John says:

    I used to work for a fortune 100 company and they were on the Exchange On-Premises Technology Adoption Program, they Engineered (design/deploy) Exchange Server 2010 in 2009. Working with Microsoft made this program very successful, I recommend this program
    for companies with Exchange On-Premises.

  5. Rhys says:

    "customers test deployments of pre-release builds of Exchange in their own production environment. " People already do this, its called Exchange 2013 and every CU released last year. I gave plenty of feedback about it, nobody cared. Everybody on this blog
    gave you plenty of feedback? "Willing to dedicate the resources (people/time and machines) to testing pre-release builds of Exchange in production. " If Microsoft doesn’t do it, why should we?

  6. EnfoPaul says:

    Our company was involved with the E15 TAP program. Do we need to sign up again for the next round of Exchange TAP through the link provided or will Microsoft automatically invite as a previous Exchange TAP member?

  7. DavidEsp says:

    @ RHYS. I don’t think you can say we do not care. I can show tons of DCRs and bugs we have taken as part of the feedback form TAPS. Also feedback on the blog is not the same as feedback we get from customers running code in production and giving us feedback.
    we have conf calls with customers and review issues and feedback we get while they are in production before we RTM. also we do spend tons of time testing, and finding bugs will we find all bugs, no.. will any software company find all bugs no.. I have been
    working with software back in the mainframes days and we had bugs back then, the company had 3 letters in its name, worked for many other software company’s in the past 25 years and not one that I know can make bug free software. That is why Microsoft runs
    our TAP program to get the best real world feedback we can get before we RTM. I know of no other company that runs a TAP program to the degree we do and why should customers care? well, we are trying to make the best software we can for you and it’s call a
    partnership, we partner with customers to get real world feedback before we release code. I know of no other software company in the world that works so much with real customers with real deployments before we release code. is it perfect no, but it is more
    then I have seen any company do anywhere and at anytime.

  8. DavidEsp says:

    @ EnfoPau yes, please sign up again please. We are starting to look at our next major release and plan for it and want to give as many of you a chance to be part of that planning as possible. So we may not be able to allow everyone in and want to give
    everyone a chance to sign up. So, yes, please do sign up.

  9. For Rhys says:

    It sounds like you should not submit a nomination form for the Exchange TAP Program then, no?

  10. DavidEsp (MSFT) says:

    @ Roberto, there is no size limit to be part of TAP in fact our smallest customers is about 20. So, go right ahead and nominate your company. We want a good mix of small, mid size and large customers..

  11. Rhys says:

    What I’m saying is, you get a huge amount of feedback and known bugs from this blog, and they stay unfixed for months. Yes you need to work a lot better with the community, but production users were used as beta testers anyway for Exchange 2013 and its
    released updates, and their feedback for the bugs was basically ignored. We submitted bugs and reports from an attempted 2013 install, and the reply from Microsoft was (exact quote) ‘I’m very sorry that you’ve had difficulties installing Exchange 2013 into
    your Exchange 2010 organization. " and that the product team would get back to us. After a month trying to follow this up we gave up, nobody at Microsoft cared. And yes, we’re a Microsoft Partner.

  12. John E. says:

    @Rhys – Don’t feel so bad Rhys, I have a client of 50 who went to Exchange 2013 who just last week – actually created a new AD forest and is now planning on migrating back to Exchange 2010. To say they hate Exchange 2013 is an understatement. Constant bugs. Constant problems for months. Constantly being ignored. They are done with Exchange 2013. Done. I work for a MS Partner too.

  13. Bob Hyatt says:

    I have a client with 3000 users migrated to Exchange 2013 from Exchange 2010 with NO issues, it was a very successful project :-)

  14. No way! says:

    Bob- Can you please provide the whitepaper or methodology of how you accomplished this feat, since even with 2 TAMS and 3 Microsoft internal resources assisting us we were unable to do the same for just 1700 mailboxes. We had constant problems up the yin yang and are still having to delete and re-create OAB IIS directories and other such nonsense every few weeks. Applying the CU3 patch was a horrific experience for us much like Night of the Living dead as OWA simply stopped working. Please provide us with a link or some other documentation on how you managed to migrate 3000 users to Exchange 2013 with “NO issues”. I don’t believe you. Might as well tell us Harry Potter waved his magic wand over your servers too.

  15. Bob Hyatt says:

    @No way, We worked with a Microsoft Gold Partner in our area that has recently done several successful Exchange Server 2013 projects.

  16. No Way! says:

    Bob – Can you provide their name and possibly a reference? From our last experience with Exchange 2013 we find what you are saying to just not be possible. We have spent far too much time taming Exchange 2013 to claim “NO issues” and would like to understand how you accomplished this seemingly impossible feat with your heads still attached to your bodies. A number of our IT people were almost fired over the whole debacle.

  17. Patel says:

    We have moved to Exchange Server 2013 from Exchange Server 2010 with no major hiccups, 1500 users are on Exchange Server 2013. Our team worked with a consultant that had done several successful Exchange Server 2013 project.

  18. No Way! says:

    Who? Who are these mysterious consultants and partners that accomplish feats that TAMs and internal MS resources cannot?

  19. No Way! says:

    Once I find out who and how these Exchange 2013 upgrades were performed with “NO issues”, then I’m going to happily call my TAM and demand an apology as well as a massive refund. We have people whose jobs and lives were nearly shattered because of Microsoft’s apparent incompetence.

  20. Patel says:

    @No Way – where is your location? country & city?

  21. Dejan Foro says:

    @No Way –
    In my experience (where experience = 15 years / 6 Exchange generations / 3,2 million mailboxes / 0 failed migrations) 95% of the problems that occur during migrations are caused by very basic configuration oversights, not by the product itself. The problem regularly begins with putting the CD and running into migration without absolutely any checking of the existing AD and Exchange environments. A number of very very basic details get missed, for example: DNS suffix not entered on the machine, wrong binding order of network adapters, power management activated on network cards, antivirus exceptions not configured, execution of updates without RunAs and while antivirus is running in the background, reference to non-existing DNS or WINS servers, polluted WINS databases where 5 machines refer to same IP, failing AD replication….
    If we specifically talk about your case it is a classic and I and the root cause is most certainly that antivirus on that machine does not have antivirus exclusions entered which brakes the virtual directory on a regular basis.
    If the people that you have engaged are not doing the job it might be time to try with someone else. We can offer you is to perform such standard health check on your environment and try to sort out the problems you’ve been experiencing. I run my own Exchange specialized company, Exchangemaster GmbH in Zurich Switzerland (Central European Time Zone) and we re a Microsoft Silver Partner with multiple Microsoft Exchange MVPs on staff. In case your company has Software assurance/Enterprise Agreement and you have those MS consultancy vouchers at hand, you can use those to pay for our services. Remote access via VPN should be sufficient and we can perform that regardless of where you are in the world. My e-mail is dejan.foro@exchangemaster.net

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