Exchange 2007 SP1 Update Available, SP2 Coming Soon

In case you missed it, Microsoft announced last week via the Exchange Team Blog that Update Rollup 9 for Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 SP1 is available for download. The blog also gives a nod to the forthcoming Exchange 2007 SP2 and includes some baffling news about Exchange support on Windows Server 2008 R2—or, rather, the lack of it.

Update Rollup 9 is a cumulative package, meaning it includes all the previous rollups for Exchange 2007 SP1. Never got around to installing Update Rollup 8? Not to worry; skip straight to this one. Update Rollup 9 is scheduled to be available from Microsoft Update on July 28, but you don't have to wait. You can download it now from Microsoft's website. And of course it is a good idea to get these installed because they consist mostly of bug fixes.

For instance, does your Microsoft Exchange Information Store service crash when you use System Center Data Protection Manager (DPM) 2007 to make a snapshot backup of Exchange? Does the Microsoft Exchange Replication service on a Standby Continuous Replication (SCR) target server crash when you enable SCR for a storage group? Are messages getting stuck in the Outbox or Drafts folders on computers running Exchange 2007 SP1?

Those problems and many more should be fixed by this latest update. There are also several issues with Server 2008 compatibility that have been resolved, and some Exchange Management Shell cmdlets have been corrected as well. You can view the complete list of fixes in the Microsoft article "Description of Update Rollup 9 for Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 1."

Keep in mind that if you're running clustered servers, Microsoft Update won't detect the available update for your Exchange 2007 servers, so you will have to apply the rollup manually. Also, if for any reason you're using the RTM version of Exchange 2007, this rollup is not for you; check instead the Microsoft article "How to obtain the latest service pack or update rollup for Exchange 2007" to find a link to the latest RTM update.

The Exchange blog also mentions that Exchange 2007 SP2 "is just around the corner," but unfortunately doesn't give us anything more definite than that it's coming this quarter, which isn't news because they announced that a couple months ago. As you might recall, SP2 introduces native snapshot backup ability for Exchange 2007 running on Windows Server 2008 among other features.

So the bigger—and stranger—news buried in there is that Exchange 2007 won't be supported on the highly anticipated Server 2008 R2. Unfortunately, the blog doesn't give any technical explanation of why this is so, but only states it as a simple fact. Does this make sense to anyone? I suppose it's possible that some future Exchange 2007 update or a third service pack might provide such support, but that's merely a guess at this point, with no guidance from Microsoft.

I understand that Server 2008 R2 is a major upgrade because it's been developed in tandem with Windows 7. But that relationship didn't just spring up; clearly, those teams have been working together for some time. Couldn't they have invited some of the Exchange folks to the party?

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