Showing posts with label Exchange. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Exchange. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

MAPI ain't dead, it's MAPI/HTTP!

A few years ago I reblogged about a post that implied MAPI was dead, Exchange 2013 says "See ya MAPI and goodbye Outlook 2003!" Exchange 2013 drops MAPI support.

Well it ain't. MAPI over TCP is (dead'ish), but MAPI itself is alive and well and moving forward into a more connected world...

João Ribeiro - What is MAPI over HTTP ?

MAPI over HTTP is a new transport used to connect Outlook and Exchange. MAPI/HTTP was first delivered with Exchange 2013 SP1 and Outlook 2013 SP1 and begins gradually rolling out in Office 365 in May. It is the long term replacement for RPC over HTTP connectivity (commonly referred to as Outlook Anywhere). MAPI/HTTP removes the complexity of Outlook Anywhere’s dependency on the legacy RPC technology.

...

The Exchange Team Blog - Outlook Connectivity with MAPI over HTTP

Among the many new features delivered in Exchange 2013 SP1 is a new method of connectivity to Outlook we refer to as MAPI over HTTP (or MAPI/HTTP for short). We’ve seen a lot of interest about this new connection method and today we’ll give you a full explanation of what it is, what it provides, where it will take us in the future, and finally some tips of how and where to get started enabling this for your users.

What is MAPI over HTTP?

MAPI over HTTP is a new transport used to connect Outlook and Exchange. MAPI/HTTP was first delivered with Exchange 2013 SP1 and Outlook 2013 SP1 and begins gradually rolling out in Office 365 in May. It is the long term replacement for RPC over HTTP connectivity (commonly referred to as Outlook Anywhere). MAPI/HTTP removes the complexity of Outlook Anywhere’s dependency on the legacy RPC technology. Let’s compare the architectures.

image

MAPI/HTTP moves connectivity to a true HTTP request/response pattern and no longer requires two long-lived TCP connections to be open for each session between Outlook and Exchange. Gone are the twin RPC_DATA_IN and RPC_DATA_OUT connections required in the past for each RPC/HTTP session. This change will reduce the number of concurrent TCP connections established between the client and server. MAPI/HTTP will generate a maximum of 2 current connections generating one long lived connection and an additional on-demand short-lived connection.

Outlook Anywhere also essentially double wrapped all of the communications with Exchange adding to the complexity. MAPI/HTTP removes the RPC encapsulation within HTTP packets sent across the network making MAPI/HTTP a more well understood and predictable HTTP payload.

An additional network level change is that MAPI/HTTP decouples the client/server session from the underlying network connection. With Outlook Anywhere connectivity, if a network connection was lost between client and server, the session was invalidated and had to be reestablished all over again, which is a time-consuming and expensive operation. In MAPI/HTTP when a network connection is lost the session itself is not reset for 15 minutes and the client can simply reconnect and continue where it left off before the network level interruption took place. This is extremely helpful for users who might be connecting from low quality networks. Additionally in the past, an unexpected server-side network blip would result in all client sessions being invalidated and a surge of reconnections being made to a mailbox server. Depending on the number of Outlook clients reconnecting, the re-establishing of so many RPC/HTTP connections might strain the resources of the mailbox server, and possibly extend the outage in scope (to Outlook clients connected to multiple servers) and time, caused by a single server-side network blip.

Why MAPI over HTTP?

...

settings. This makes it easier to roll out changes in authentication settings for Outlook.

The future

MAPI/HTTP puts the Exchange team in position to innovate more quickly. It simplifies the architecture removing dependency on the RPC technologies which are no longer evolving as quickly as the customers demand. It provides the path for extensibility of the connection capabilities. A new capability that is on the roadmap for Outlook is to enable multi-factor authentication for users in Office 365. This capability is made possible with the use of MAPI/HTTP and is targeted to be delivered later this year. For a deeper look at this upcoming feature you can review the recent Multi-Factor Authentication for Office 365 blog post. This won’t stop with Office 365 MFA, but provides the extensibility foundation for 3rdparty identity providers.

How does MAPI/HTTP work?

Let’s walk through the scenario of an Outlook 2013 SP1 client connecting to Exchange Server 2013 SP1 after MAPI/HTTP has been enabled.

...

What’s required?

So now we have a clear set of advantages you can offer users, let’s review the requirements to enable MAPI/HTTP.

...

Now deploy MAPI/HTTP

Now that you have prepared your servers with SP1, updated your clients, and reviewed potential sizing impacts you are ready to get on with implementing MAPI/HTTP. It is disabled by default in SP1 and you must take explicit actions to configure and enable it. These steps are well covered in the MAPI over HTTPTechNet article.

A few important things to remember in your deployment.

...

How do I know it is working?

There are a few quick ways to verify your configuration is working as expected.

...

Summary

MAPI/HTTP provides a simplified transport and resulting architecture for Outlook to connect with Exchange. It enables improved user experiences to allow them faster access to mail and improves the resilience of their Outlook connections. These investments are the foundation for future capabilities such as multi-factor authentication in Outlook. It also helps IT support and troubleshoot client connection issues using standard HTTP protocol tools.

As with all things new you must properly plan your implementation. Use the deployment guidanceavailable on TechNet and the updated sizing recommendations in the calculator before you start your deployment. With proper use it will guide you to a smooth deployment of MAPI/HTTP.

Special thanks to Brian Day and Abdel Bahgat for extensive contributions to this blog post.

Brian Shiers | Technical Product Manager

MAPI/HTTP FAQ

We collected a number of questions which frequently came up during the development, internal dogfooding, and customer TAPtesting of MAPI/HTTP. We hope these answer most of the questions you may have about MAPI/HTTP.

...

So there, MAPI ain't dead, but is instead better than ever!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Microsoft Open Specifications Posters v2 released (Think "Wow, that's allot of spec's" Posters)

Microsoft Downloads - Open Specifications Posters

The Open Specifications Posters (PDF format) make it easy for interoperability developers to explore the Open Specifications overview documents for Office client, Lync, SharePoint, Office file formats, Exchange Server, SQL Server, and Windows.

Version: 5.0

Date Published: 2/21/2014

ExchangeOpenSpecPoster.pdf, 556 KB

MicrosoftOpenSpecPoster - Accessiblility Version.pdf, 336 KB

OfficeLyncOpenSpecPoster.pdf, 669 KB

SharePointOpenSpecPoster.pdf, 606 KB

SQLOpenSpecPoster.pdf, 1,011 KB

WindowsOpenSpecPoster.pdf, 1.0 MB

The Open Specifications Posters (PDF format) make it easy for interoperability developers to explore the Open Specifications overview documents for Office client, Lync, SharePoint, Office file formats, Exchange Server, SQL Server, and Windows. The posters display, by functional area, the protocols, file formats, and related technologies, as described in each overview document. A high-contrast poster is also provided for those with visual accessibility needs that contains listings for all functional areas .

Some cube art to help when you get visited by the "Microsoft is closed and the devil" guy (I know you know that guy...)

Here's a snap of the Windows PDF;

imageSNAGHTML1fe1a2a9

 

Related Past Post XRef:
Office/Exchange File Format,Specification and Protocol Documentation refreshed
Microsoft Format and Specification Documentation 0712 Refresh (Think Office 2013 CP update). Oh and some SharePoint Doc's too
Microsoft Format and Specification Documentation Refresh ("Significantly changed technical content") [Updated: Includes updates for Office 15 Technical Preview ]
Microsoft Office File Formats and Microsoft Office Protocols Documentation Refreshed
Microsoft Office File Formats and Protocols documentation updated for Office 2010 (Think “Now with added ‘X’ flavor… DocX, PptX, XlsX, etc”)

Microsoft Open Specifications Poster

XAML Language Specification (as in the in the full XAML, WPF and Silverlight XAML Specs)

"Microsoft SQL Server Data Portability Documentation"

MS-PST file format specification released. Yep, the full and complete specification for Outlook PST’s is now just a download away.
Microsoft Office (DOC, XLS, PPT) Binary File Format Specifications Released – We’re talking the full technical specification… (The [MS-DOC].pdf alone is 553 pages of very dense specification information)
DOC, XLS and PPT Binary File Format Specifications Released (plus WMF, Windows Compound File [aka OLE 2.0 Structured Storage] and Ink Serialized Format Specifications and Translator to XML news)

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Hold on there! Exchange Online's Litigation Hold versus In-Place Hold

Welcome to the US SMB&D TS2 Team Blog - Litigation Hold versus In-Place Hold in Exchange Online

I frequently get questions about the compliance archiving capabilities available in Exchange Online and Office 365.  One area that causes a lot of confusion is around Litigation Hold versus In-Place HoldIs Litigation Hold the same as In-Place Hold?  If not, then when and why would I choose to use one versus the other?  Is Litigation Hold going away in favor of In-Place Hold?

First, a little background…  In Exchange 2010 and Exchange Online (pre-service upgrade), Litigation Hold was introduced to allow customers to immutably preserve mailbox content to meet long term preservation and eDiscovery requirements. When a mailbox was placed on Litigation Hold, mailbox content was preserved indefinitely.

In Exchange 2013 and the new Exchange Online, In-Place Hold was introduced which allowed more flexibility in preserving your data.  It allowed you to preserve items matching your query parameters, known as a query-based In-Place Hold, preserve items for a specified period, known as a time-based In-Place Hold, and also preserve everything indefinitely, which emulated the Litigation Hold feature.

After the release of Exchange 2013 and the new Exchange Online, there were initial references in the documentation and in the product itself that Litigation Hold was being deprecated, and included recommendations to use In-Place Hold instead, which added to the confusion.

I want to clarify that Litigation Hold is not being deprecated, and the references to that have been cleaned up in the product and in the documentation.  Both types are available for use and you should use the hold feature that best meets your needs.  Here are some scenarios to help you choose between the two holds.

image

..."

Message Policy, Recovery and Compliance

Archiving Exchange Online-based mailboxes

Exchange Online mailboxes reside in the cloud, and archiving them requires unique hosting environments. In some cases, Exchange Online can also be used to archive on-premises mailboxes in the cloud. The options for archiving with Exchange Online are described in this section.

Exchange Online provides built-in archiving capabilities for cloud-based mailboxes, including an In-Place Archive that gives users a convenient place to store older email messages. An In-Place Archive is a special type of mailbox that appears alongside a user’s primary mailbox folders in Outlook and Outlook Web App. Users can access and search the archive in the same way they access and search their primary mailboxes. Available functionality depends on the client in use:

  • Outlook 2013, Outlook 2010, and Outlook Web App   Users have access to the full features of the archive, as well as related compliance features like control over retention and archive policies.
  • Outlook 2007   Users have basic support for the In-Place Archive, but not all archiving and compliance features are available. For example, users cannot apply retention or archive policies to mailbox items and must rely on administrator-provisioned policies instead.

Administrators use the Exchange admin center or remote Windows PowerShell to enable the personal archive feature for specific users.

For more information about In-Place Archives, see In-Place Archiving.

The Exchange Team Blog - Litigation Hold and In-Place Hold in Exchange 2013 and Exchange Online

In Exchange 2010 and Exchange Online, we introduced Litigation Hold to allow you to immutably preserve mailbox content to meet long term preservation and eDiscovery requirements. When a mailbox is placed on Litigation Hold, mailbox content is preserved indefinitely.

Placing a mailbox on Litigation Hold You can place a mailbox on Litigation Hold by using the Exchange Administration Center (EAC) or the Shell (set the LitigationHoldEnabled parameter). In Exchange 2010, you can also use the Exchange Management Console (EMC) to do this.

...

Preserving items for a specified duration To preserve items for a specified period, we added the LitigationHoldDuration parameter to Exchange Online. This helps you meet your compliance needs by preserving all items in a mailbox for the specified duration, calculated from the date the item was created (date received in case of inbound email). For example, if your organization needs to preserve all mailbox data for seven years, you can place all mailboxes on Litigation Hold and set the LitigationHoldDuration to 7 years (in days).

This functionality is also available in Exchange 2013, allowing you to preserve items for a specified duration in your on-premises organization – one example of how developments in Exchange Online benefit Exchange Server on-premises.

In-Place Hold in Exchange 2013 and Exchange Online

In Exchange 2013 and the new Exchange Online, we introduced In-Place Hold, which allows more flexibility in preserving your data. Hold functionality is integrated with In-Place eDiscovery to allow you to search and preserve using a single wizard or a single cmdlet (New-MailboxSearch). You can use the In-Place eDiscovery & Hold wizard or the cmdlet to search for and preserve items matching your query parameters, known as a query-based In-Place Hold, preserve items for a specified period, known as a time-based hold, and also preserve everything indefinitely, which emulates the old Litigation Hold feature. Check out In-Place eDiscovery and In-Place Hold in the New Exchange - Part I and Part II for more info.

...

Yeah, I know there's maybe 0.57 reader who will find this interesting or useful, but hey, those 0.57 rock! And this is something for my day life that might come in handy on day... so there.

That said, do I really need to make the ESI/Litigation speech? No? Because if your in IT can have any kind of data storage in your realm, you already know that it's only a matter of time? Ok, good...

 

Related Past Post XRef:
Exchange Online getting serious about helping with eDiscovery

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Office/Exchange File Format,Specification and Protocol Documentation refreshed

Microsoft Office File Formats Documentation

The Microsoft Office file formats documentation provides detailed technical specifications for Microsoft proprietary file formats.

The documentation includes a set of companion overview and reference documents that supplement the technical specifications with conceptual background, overviews of file format relationships and interactions, and technical reference information.

Version:
Date Published:

1113

11/20/2013

File name:
File size:

OfficeFileFormatsProtocols.zip

70.8 MB

[[ReadmefirstOffFileFormat]].pdf

137 KB

[MS-CTDOC].pdf

356 KB

[MS-CTXLS].pdf

419 KB

[MS-DOC].pdf

19.1 MB

[MS-DSEXPORT].pdf

485 KB

[MS-FFCHGTR].pdf

139 KB

[MS-ODCFF].pdf

840 KB

[MS-ODRAW].pdf

23.3 MB

[MS-OFCGLOS].pdf

1.6 MB

[MS-OFFCRYPTO].pdf

2.8 MB

[MS-OFFDI].pdf

766 KB

[MS-OFORMS].pdf

5.9 MB

[MS-OFREF].pdf

1.4 MB

[MS-OGRAPH].pdf

5.9 MB

[MS-ONE].pdf

3.1 MB

[MS-ONESTORE].pdf

3.5 MB

[MS-OSHARED].pdf

6.3 MB

[MS-OVBA].pdf

2.9 MB

[MS-OWEMXML].pdf

1.1 MB

[MS-PPT].pdf

23.3 MB

[MS-PST].pdf

5.7 MB

[MS-WORDLFF].pdf

599 KB

[MS-XLDM].pdf

3.8 MB

[MS-XLS].pdf

41.5 MB

[MS-XLSB].pdf

41.1 MB

Microsoft Office Protocol Documentation

The Office protocol documentation provides detailed technical specifications for Microsoft proprietary protocols (including extensions to industry-standard or other published protocols) that are implemented and used in Microsoft Office client programs to interoperate or communicate with Microsoft products.

The documentation includes a set of companion overview and reference documents that supplement the technical specifications with conceptual background, overviews of inter-protocol relationships and interactions, and technical reference information.

Version:
Date Published:

1113

11/20/2013

File name:
File size:

OfficeProto.zip

59.4 MB

[[ReadmefirstOffProto]].pdf

147 KB

[MS-ABS].pdf

2.5 MB

[MS-AVEDGEA].pdf

916 KB

[MS-CONFAS].pdf

1,009 KB

Word, Excel, and PowerPoint Standards Support

This documentation provides detailed support information for the Open Document Format (ODF) and Open XML (ECMA-376 and ISO/IEC-29500) file formats implemented in Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, and Microsoft PowerPoint.

Version:
Date Published:

1113

11/20/2013

File name:
File size:

MSOFFSTAND.zip

38.8 MB

[[ReadmefirstOStand]].pdf

140 KB

[MS-CUSTOMUI].pdf

11.1 MB

[MS-CUSTOMUI2].pdf

3.3 MB

[MS-DOCX].pdf

2.4 MB

Microsoft Exchange and Microsoft Outlook Standards Documentation

The Microsoft Exchange and Microsoft Outlook standards documentation describes how Exchange and Outlook support industry messaging standards and Requests for Comments (RFCs) documents about iCalendar, Internet Message Access Protocol – Version 4 (IMAP4), and Post Office Protocol – Version 3 (POP3).

 

Version:
Date Published:

17.0

11/20/2013

File name:
File size:

Exchange_Standards.zip

4.0 MB

[[ReadmefirstMSExStand]].pdf

143 KB

[MS-OXGLOS].pdf

668 KB

[MS-OXREF].pdf

710 KB

[MS-STANOICAL].pdf

2.3 MB

That's some lite reading for the coming holidays... :)

 

Related Past Post XRef:
Microsoft Format and Specification Documentation 0712 Refresh (Think Office 2013 CP update). Oh and some SharePoint Doc's too
Microsoft Format and Specification Documentation Refresh ("Significantly changed technical content") [Updated: Includes updates for Office 15 Technical Preview ]
Microsoft Office File Formats and Microsoft Office Protocols Documentation Refreshed
Microsoft Office File Formats and Protocols documentation updated for Office 2010 (Think “Now with added ‘X’ flavor… DocX, PptX, XlsX, etc”)

Microsoft Open Specifications Poster

XAML Language Specification (as in the in the full XAML, WPF and Silverlight XAML Specs)

"Microsoft SQL Server Data Portability Documentation"

MS-PST file format specification released. Yep, the full and complete specification for Outlook PST’s is now just a download away.
Microsoft Office (DOC, XLS, PPT) Binary File Format Specifications Released – We’re talking the full technical specification… (The [MS-DOC].pdf alone is 553 pages of very dense specification information)
DOC, XLS and PPT Binary File Format Specifications Released (plus WMF, Windows Compound File [aka OLE 2.0 Structured Storage] and Ink Serialized Format Specifications and Translator to XML news)