Exchange Server SP1 Packs Data Storage Benefits - InformationWeek

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5/18/2010
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Exchange Server SP1 Packs Data Storage Benefits

If your small business runs Microsoft Exchange, you know that it can serve up its fair share of data storage headaches. I can't offer a cure, but maybe I can hand you a couple of virtual aspirin.

If your small business runs Microsoft Exchange, you know that it can serve up its fair share of data storage headaches. I can't offer a cure, but maybe I can hand you a couple of virtual aspirin.Late last year, Microsoft released Exchange Server 2010. Now it's ready to deliver the first service pack, which should appear within the next few months. Focusing on data storage here, that's good news for several reasons:

Better archiving. Exchange Server 2010 beefed up its archiving capabilities, but it didn't deliver a lot of storage flexibility. Now SP1 will allow admins to provision a user's Personal Archive to a different mailbox database than their primary mailbox. And that gives SMBs the opportunity to store archives on a different, and less expensive, storage tier than the one used for standard mailbox storage.

Improved data-retention management. SP1 will add new features that allow admins to create retention policy tags for email. That gives your SMB a single point of control for setting and applying data retention policies. And THAT means less risk that a badly-managed retention policy will cause your company serious legal troubles down the road.

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Improved multi-mailbox search. Here, too, Microsoft is making changes with data retention and e-discovery scenarios in mind. If your company gets an e-discovery request, a search preview feature will give you a quick idea of just how many messages will be involved in complying with the request. And with a search de-duplication feature, Exchange will move just one instance of a message to the discovery mailbox, rather than forcing you to wade through dozens of duplicated.

Think you won't need those new retention policy and e-discovery features? Consider yourself lucky: In 2006, 90 percent of all U.S. corporations were engaged in some type of litigation. But if that number tells you anything, it's that your luck probably won't hold. Prepare for e-discovery now, and it will cost you a lot less later.

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