Exchange 12 Will Be 64-Bit Only (2005)

On November 15, Microsoft announced that Exchange 12, due in late 2006 or early 2007, will only run on 64-bit servers.

By way of background:

  • With 32-bit machines, you only get a 4GB memory space.
  • Servers can easily run out of space; e.g., Windows can take 1GB of this.
  • Over the next two years, 64-bit servers will be mainstream.

Key points are:

  • Clients don’t need to be 64-bit.
  • AMD and Intel chips are supported.
  • Will allow servers to scale beyond their current practical maximum of 4,000 to 5,000 users.
  • Should reduce cost per user of storage.
  • Exchange 12 and earlier servers can coexist.
  • Some third-party 32-bit applications won’t work with Exchange 12. Software vendors should work with Microsoft to resolve the issues.
  • Beta 1 is available now.
  • The first public beta will be in mid-2006.

64bit support makes great sense and is good for everyone.

David Ferris

One Comment

  1. Posted November 16, 2005 at 2:05 AM | Permalink

    So this seems like a remarkable statement or a remarkable change of strategy. Last time I heard, Microsoft were trying to make E12 the version which would finally persuade all the 5.5 etc users to upgrade; making it 64-bit-only seems likely to kill that objective stone dead. But who knows? Maybe a 64-bit version is what the 5.5 users have all been waiting for; I assumed it was a cost / benefit issue, and a 64-bit upgrade would have a major impact on that ratio.

  2. Posted November 16, 2005 at 5:38 AM | Permalink

    David, what happened to my comment from yesterday?

    I am definitely puzzled as to how this is “good for everyone” when 100% of the current Exchange hardware is immediately obsolete. Exchange 2003 explicitly -doesn’t- run on Windows 2003’s 64-bit edition, so it will be a 100% rip-and-replace scenario for all customers.

  3. Posted November 16, 2005 at 6:58 AM | Permalink

    Correction: Beta 1 for E12 will release before the end of the year, 2005, but it not available today

  4. Posted November 16, 2005 at 8:17 AM | Permalink

    It’s certainly good for the hardware vendors who will have to replace nearly 100% of the existing deployments of Exchange server hardware. I can see it being a good option, but as the only scenario? It’s not like the Exchange (or MS in general) customer base is typically aggressive about deploying upgrades. Now there’s a hardware barrier to doing so — as opposed, say, to Domino 7 which is providing more scalability/performance on existing servers.

  5. Posted November 17, 2005 at 12:18 AM | Permalink

    Odd in that it’ll only be 64 bit. In my experience, the only way to get Exchange reliable was to severely restrict the number of users per server, and the amount of mailbox size per server.

    Which suggests that 64 benefits in terms of scalability is of less use. And the performance ? People already have scaled Exchange in their environments.

    Surely this is just a simple “force people to upgrade to 64-bit AD and Windows” strategy ?

    What about the (admittedly low) number of SMB’s on exchange ? Why are they being forced to 64-bit ? Windows License fees ?

    (And what about those folks who paid for three years worth of free upgrades, where there’s more than three years between major upgrades…!)

    —* Bill

  6. Andres
    Posted November 17, 2005 at 3:47 PM | Permalink

    Come on !!! Thks, Microsoft… I will have an excuse now to go to the latest hardware platform…. 🙂 Do you mind to require also to use also an Outlook version that also requires me a newer Pc, so I can also justify to my boss to change it ? By the way, do not forget to require newer PDA models to connect Exchange, so i can also get that nice iPAQ with wifi and UMTS integrated that I saw last night…

    Ferris, you are right.. This is call innovation. Forcing users to upgrade and change continuosly not only on soft, but also on hard. I am sure that is the only way to improve programs perfomance, scability and solve the problems I had with corruptions…. Who cares about changing everything ? We are already used to do it, we have been ever that forever

  7. Dag Kvello
    Posted November 18, 2005 at 4:46 AM | Permalink

    Anybody who has bought Servers (from IBM, HP and maybe Dell) the last year or two allready have 64bit CPU’s and HW. In 2007, when E12 might come out, all servers still under ordinary warranty will feature 64bit CPU’s. So… The only thing preventing deployment of 64-bit OS’es today (at least where I come from) is the slow-to-release-64-bit-apps companies out there.

    If I had a 64-bit Domino available today, all upgrades in 2005/2006 and new installations would be 64-bit Domino on 64-bit SuSE or Win-x64.

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