As expected, the Microsoft Exchange Server team today made a beta available for Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 SP1 as part of TechEd North America 2010 in New Orleans. Availability of the beta was announced on the Exchange Team Blog, and you can download it in the Microsoft Download Center.
This first service pack for Exchange 2010 includes some welcome new features. Topping that list will be the changes in storage configuration for the Personal Archive—on SP1, the archive is no longer limited to being in the same database as the primary mailbox. Others might be more excited about upgrades to Outlook Web App (OWA) or all the new functionality added to the GUI.
You can download the beta today and start testing in your lab. Microsoft hasn't yet said when the final version will be available, but by all accounts you should expect it by the end of summer. In the meantime, Exchange expert Tony Redmond is working on a comprehensive review of Exchange 2010 SP1 that we'll share with you on WindowsITPro.com, and we've got other feature articles in the works on topics such as implementing Exchange 2010's Personal Archives. So check back to the Exchange & Outlook page often!