I see that Paul Robichaux’s “Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 Inside Out: Connectivity, Clients, and UM (Unified Messaging)” has finally made an appearance on Amazon.com. This is the companion volume to my “Microsoft Exchange Server 2013 Inside Out: Mailbox and High Availability” book and it’s nice to see the pair finally appear. They were designed to provide the broadest possible view of Exchange, something that I think is now almost impossible to do in a single volume, so I am very happy to see Paul’s book become generally available.
It seems like Unified Messaging is on a bit of an upswing too. Attendees at the Exchange Connections conference in Las Vegas (October 2013) were asked to indicate how many were rolling out UM and it was interesting to see the growth over the last year. Roughly 10% of attendees polled said that they had UM projects whereas before the numbers were in the 1-2% range.
Of course, UM has been around for a while. Exchange 2007 was the first version to support the technology, so Microsoft is in its third iteration, which must mean that UM is ready to go. Seriously, companies such as Cisco and Nortel have offered integration between email and PBXs for many years. I have fond memories of visiting the Nortel UM development center in Galway, Ireland around 2001 for a briefing on their product. At that time it involved putting a board with a Windows 2000 server into the PBX. By comparison, things are so much easier today because of the general adoption of TCP/IP and SIP as the common interoperability protocols between PBXs and voice applications.
Given Paul’s long background with UM, it should come as no surprise that his book is very good on the topic. In fact, it’s the best out there. But the book also covers topics such as connecting Outlook to Exchange, Outlook Web App, ActiveSync, Lync integration, and the Client Access Server. I have no hesitation in recommending it as a good read – something that should be on every Exchange administrator’s bookshelf, especially if you’re involved with an Exchange 2013 implementation.
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