Microsoft just released Office 2004 SP2, which successfully addresses the most major shortcomings of Entourage in an Exchange Server environment. I don’t know whether to be happy or upset. My Mac users will now be able to use Entourage to perform a number of important tasks that were impossible before. At the same time, all of these features used to work fine in Outlook 2001 for OS9, and Entourage is still a far cry from Outlook 2001. Worse still, these features should have been included in Entourage when it was first introduced at least four years ago.
Let’s take a look at these “new” features:
Entourage 2004 Exchange Server Support Improvements
Gain full access to your organization?s Global Address List information.
We couldn’t get any access before using their LDAP connection to Exchange.
Provide delegate access to your Mail folders, Calendar and Address Book.
A pretty standard feature for Outlook, although we don’t use it much here.
Share your Mail folders, Calendar and Address Book with assistants and colleagues.
A major reason why people use Exchange in the first place.
Take advantage of improved public folder performance.
What they mean is that public calendars now display as calendars instead of as if they were mail messages.
Receive password expiration notification before it expires.
Passwords used to just expire and then the user would be locked out.
View and manage how much disk space your Mail folders use to ensure you don?t exceed your organization?s set storage limits.
Users used to have to use a PC to figure out what was hogging up all of the space. Unless synchronization has improved, they will still have difficulty emptying large trash folders.
Of course, Entourage is still missing Task and Notes folder synchronization, but that would be too much to reasonably expect, right?