On Friday, Microsoft released to the world the first service pack for Exchange Server 2007.  For many organizations, both those that have already deployed Exchange Server 2007 and those waiting to deploy, Service Pack 1 is a welcome release and brings a number of enhancements that increase the viability of this newest version.  Here are some of the improvements made in Service Pack 1:

  • Public folder access in Outlook Web Access: From a user’s standpoint, this is huge.  My organization deployed Exchange 2007 during the summer and, although the improvements made to OWA are fantastic, lack of public folder support has been a nuisance.  To continue to support public folders, we have continued to operate our Exchange 2003 server.
  • Support for Windows Server 2008: With the upcoming release of Windows Server 2008, it wouldn’t make a whole lot of sense if the new OS didn’t support Exchange.  The RTM release of Exchange Server 2007 will not run on Windows Server 2008, but SP1 corrects this issue.
  • Service Pack 1 also introduces Standby Continuous Replication which works by shipping logs to a standby server, thus improving Exchange’s overall reliability.
  • SP1 adds support for Office Communication Server/Exchange 2007 interoperability.
  • When used with Internet Explorer 7, OWA supports secure MIME.
  • OWA 2007 with SP1 now supports personal distribution lists and to create server-side rules.
  • The Exchange Management Console GUI has been improved with additions allowing management of POP3, IMAP, public folders.

These are just the high-level things that have been added to Service Pack 1.  Under the hood a huge number of smaller improvements have also been made.