Microsoft's focus has recently been in its cross-platform software integration and cloud-based solutions. However, with the latest launch of Exchange Server, the Redmond-based technology company is showing the world that it has on-premises email server market.

The Exchange Team, in-charge of the Exchange Server's development, released Exchange Server 2016 on Thursday, Oct.1. The improved version is aimed at businesses, organizations and institutions that prefer to managed data internally by running their own data centers.

According to the Exchange Team's blog post, the company still recognizes email as a "backbone of business communication" and an essential tool that facilitates better work output. However, with the growing number of users and the multitude of emails sent and received, things can get confusing and workers can get distracted. Hence, the team sees it fit that a better platform - equipped with tools for managing and filtering relevant emails, better scheduling and promoting workforce interaction - is made available.

"What sets this version of Exchange apart from the past, is that it was forged in the cloud," writes the Exchange Team. "This release brings the Exchange bits that already power millions of Office 365 mailboxes to your on-premises environment."

The 2016 version builds upon the 2013's features. Data loss prevention, file recovery when storage fails and managed availability, as well as the web-based admin center, are now much improved.

In Exchange Server 2016, the Outlook web experience has been thoroughly improved. New functions such as Sweep, Undo, Pin were added together with features that include inline reply, single-line inbox view, emojis, themes and improved HTML rendering. Searches have also been optimized to bring about more accurate and detailed results.

Developing extensions that can be integrated into existing the user interface elements is now possible with Exchange Server 2016. The ability to develop extensions can fit well with the improved collaboration capabilities, which streamlines document sharing and eliminates version control issues.

"You can now attach a document as a link to SharePoint 2016 (currently in preview) or OneDrive for Business instead of a traditional attachment, providing the benefits of coauthoring and version control," explains the Exchange Team.

Improvements that speed up and make the eDiscovery pipeline more scalable, better compatibility with Exchange 2013 and an improved set of automated repair tools were embedded into the new version, which also builds upon the

The same with its predecessor, Exchange Server 2016 will have cumulative updates (CUs) releases every quarter, with the first one arriving at Q1 2016. The CUs are meant to fix bugs, add further improvements to the base system, which will include features like search indexing from passive.

The Exchange Team is set to publish a more in-depth write-up regarding the Exchange Server 2016's features and capabilities.

Photo: reynermedia | Flickr 

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