The first public beta of Microsoft Exchange Server 2010, part of Microsoft’s unified communications family, was released today. You can get the beta from Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 Try It

Exchange 2010 is part of the next wave of Microsoft Office-related products and is the first server in a new generation of Microsoft server technology built from the ground up to work on-premises and as an online service. This release of Exchange 2010 introduces a new integrated e-mail archive and features to help reduce costs and improve the user experience.

Exchange Server 2010 will become available in the second half of 2009. Microsoft Office 2010 and related products will enter technical preview in the third quarter of 2009 and become available in the first half of 2010.

Exchange 2010, together with Microsoft Outlook 2010, will give people more control over their communications with features such as these:

  • MailTips. Warn users before they commit an e-mail faux pas such as sending mail to large distribution groups, to recipients who are out of the office or to recipients outside the organization, helping protect against information leaks and reduce unnecessary e-mail messages.
  • Voice Mail Preview. See text previews of voice mail directly in Outlook.
  • Ignore Conversation. This e-mail “mute button” allows people to remove themselves from an irrelevant e-mail string, reducing unwanted e-mail and runaway reply-all threads.
  • Conversation View. Combine related e-mail messages in a single conversation to reduce inbox clutter.
  • Call Answering Rules. Create customized “Press 1 for …” call-routing menus with Exchange voice mail.
  • Consistent Experience. Use Outlook on the PC, a mobile phone or a browser for the same experience with enhancements in Outlook Mobile and Outlook Web Access.

For more information, see Microsoft Unveils Exchange 2010 With Public Beta and the Exchange 2010 Beta Site.