I just read this article, where IT analysts "Directions on Microsoft" and "Gartner" criticize Microsoft's decision to release Exchange 12 in 64 bit only:
"Sixty-four bit is definitely coming on, and as people move forward to new systems, they'll buy 64-bit servers," said Pawlack. "But we're not there yet. I think upgrades and migrations [to Exchange 12] are going to be very slow."
When Exchange 12 is released at least a year from now, you cannot buy a 32 bit server hardware, there are companies buying new servers today, who don't even realise they buy 64bit hardware. Early adapters of Exchange 12 probably adapted Exchange 2003 early too, so chances are next year it's time for new hardware anyway and that will be 64 bit. Exchange 12 adaption might be slow but it has nothing to do with 64 bit.The article quotes Eileen Brown's article on 64 bit performance gains on 64 bit platform. The analysts reply:
"It's a move made not on technical merit, but because Exchange is running into scheduling problems. It was done to reduce the test matrix and help move the schedule forward. We feel that's the only rational reason for doing this."
Only rational reason? what's wrong with a technical merit, implementers of Exchange 12 need less storage or get more users with same storage. What's wrong on giving the customer the best solution available.
The 64-bit-only characteristic is going to make migration difficult, said Pawlack, who cited a lack of in-place migration tools -- and a lack of any Microsoft talk of such tools -- and an inability to run Exchange 12 on Microsoft's Virtual Server, which is to support 32-bit only through next year's edition.
"Migration difficult"? 32 bits apps are 100% compatible with x64 Windows, only issues are drivers. x64 bit Windows has been released since April of this year, when Exchange 12 comes out (end 2006 begin 2007) all Windows enterprise hardware and software vendors will have 64 bit drivers available."inability to run virtual"? If according to these analysts Microsoft's customers are uncomfortable to implement 64 bit Windows, in that case they will be terrified to virtualize their OS'es. Virtualization has more impact. But even then, when Exchange 12 comes out, Virtual Server v NEXT (longhorn) will have 64 bit guest support.
These guys don't know what they are talking about, "typical exchange migration" today is Exchange 5.5 to exchange 2003, now that is no piece of cake. But Exchange 200x to Exchange 12 x64 should be not more difficult then exchange 2000 to 2003. Yes hardware needs replaced, but that is often the case when implementing a new version of Exchange.[:$]Just my humble opinion....
Gartner: "The change will make the typical Exchange version migration slower and more complex,"