64 bit Exchange really does rock!

Tour date 3 of the TechNet roadshow and we were in Manchester.  I was expecting to sail through the session, and all of the demos, and hoping that the UM demo went off without a hitch.  I mean, it wasn’t as if it was the first time I’d done this was it?  But I didn’t allow for the email telling me about the upgrade to the Unified Messaging server (and the associated downtime) on the day before the roadshow did I?

So I sent a mail to the wonderful Richard basically begging him to leave the old 32 bit server up and running whilst I did the rehearsal the evening before.  There were a couple of issues with the 64 bit server at the time, so after the rehearsal finished, we agreed that I’d do the UM demo on 32 bit kit the next day.  fine and dandy.  Well an hour before my session started, I had another quick run through the UM demo, and I found that I couldn’t even login to the system!  Oh panic…. I called Richard at his office number (as I assumed he’d be in the office doing the upgrade in the middle of the night) and got him out of bed instead.  Aargh!  He’d assumed that my demo would be 11am Redmond time, not UK time.  More panic.  (I was at the silent screaming stage by then).  Richard gave me a new login account (from the new server) and I went through the steps of provisioning the mailbox and creating the auto respnse for voicemail and email. (30 minutes before I was due on stage).

Well, by the time I got to the UM demo section of the presentation, I was totally terrified.  This version has all of the bells and whistles that you’ll all be getting in Beta 2 soon, and I hadn’t actually played with any of the additional pieces, let alone in front of 300 people… Oh heck.  There’s a first time for everything though so off I went.

A perfect performance (if i say so myself).  The UM assistant behaved magnificently, listened to everything I said and responded first time.  OWA updated automatically as it was supposed to, and everything went like clockwork.  Phew! Such a relief.

So a major thank you to the Exchange team for rolling out such a stonking piece of 64-bit Exchange, and my undying gratitude to Richard in the UM team for responding in an un-groggy way at 2:15AM redmond time.  So to use a totally US based phrase… You rock!

Thank you…