March brings the world Saint Patrick’s Day, the first day of Spring in the Northern Hemisphere, the first day of Autumn in the Southern Hemisphere, and this year, it also brings Exchange admins big updates for all three of the currently supported versions of Exchange. No matter which one you may be running, you may want to take a look at these updates, get them tested, and get them deployed in your next change window.
Let’s take a look at all three versions of Exchange to see what Microsoft has brought us this March.
Exchange 2007 SP3 RU16
If you are still running Exchange 2007, then Microsoft has released Exchange 2007 SP3 Update Rollup 16 for you. This RU of course includes all updates since RU15 plus updated time zone files. It should be considered important to install both to keep current and to ensure you have the latest TZ definitions, which would be important to most international companies. You can download RU17 from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=e40fbb0e-783e-477a-8db1-8777b020d8d5 or get it through Windows Update. Reboots are not required, but it will restart relevant services for you when you apply it.
Exchange 2010 SP3 RU9
Exchange 2010 SP3 gets Update Rollup 9, which is cumulative for all updates since SP3 was released. If you’ve been hanging back on your RUs, you can go to this one directly as long as you are on SP3. If you are on an earlier SP, you are unsupported and crazy. Get patching! You can download RU9 from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=a03c23cb-be32-41e9-9edf-2ab1cb447751. By the way, if you are on Exchange 2010 SP3, this month is the month you entered extended support. Congrats, and consider whether you are comfortable with that, or if you want to start planning for your upgrades to 2013, Office 365.
Admins with users in Chile or Mexico should read http://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/3048372 before applying this RU, as the time zone updates may do bad things to your users’ meetings if they are in either countries’ time zones.
Exchange 2013 Cumulative Update 8
Exchange 2013 has a new CU, number 8 in the series. Both the change in name from Update Rollup to “Cumulative Update” and the lack of distinction around SP1 being an earlier CU still takes some getting used to, but Exchange 2013 admins do want to deploy this CU. As with all 2013 CUs, a schema extension is required. One of the best things about CU8 is for customers in hybrid with Exchange Online. CU8 brings automatic redirection for Exchange ActiveSync clients, so that admins won’t have to touch users’ mobile devices after moving a mailbox to Office 365. You can download CU 8 from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=d35032f4-1012-4292-9e7d-77e85ec1c092.
Each of the CUs/RUs have specific installation instructions, so be sure to read the steps that are on the pages linked above. Pay close attention if you are running clusters, or again, if you have users in Chile or Mexico.
The best way to avoid issues and remain in a supported configuration is to stay current with your patches. While none of these updates addresses new security issues, they do include updates for security issues previously released, so it is a good idea to make sure you are on the current CU or RU so you know you are fully protected and that any lingering bugs have been quashed.