To reinforce yesterday’s post about Exchange Web Services (EWS), I wanted to draw your attention to the Exchange Developer Roadmap posted on May 22 2008 on the Exchange API-spotting blog.
There shouldn’t really be any surprises here, but there were a couple of items I wanted to highlight. First:
Given this commitment to Web services and our goal of making Exchange Web Services the richest developer interface for Exchange… (emphasis added)
Here’s a preview of some of the functionality that we plan to add to the next release of Exchange Web Services:
- Access to Folder Associated Items (FAI) and read/write access to user settings (Devin: this page in the MAPI reference indicates that FAIs are things like views and forms. I believe that this also fixes a known quirk of EWS that keeps you from creating Outlook-visible search folders that use certain property paths. I believe this also gives access to server-side rules, if they’re not already accessible through a separate part of the API.)
- Management of Personal Distribution Lists (Devin: very cool.)
- Throttling capabilities that give Exchange administrators control over system resource consumption (Devin: this will be very nice for helping keep poorly written applications from taking down the Exchange servers.)
- A powerful and easy-to-use server-to-server authentication model to enable building portals and enterprise mash-ups (Devin: let’s hope this can ease some of the pain of building Exchange-aware SharePoint sites, at least those that don’t require direct access to private mailbox content.)
- An easy-to-use Microsoft .NET API that fully wraps the Web service calls, which makes Web service development even easier (Devin: I’ll be interested in seeing how this stacks up against third-party offerings like the Independentsoft EWS client offering.)
Then they go on to list the APIs that will get removed (Exchange WebDAV, Store Events, CDO 3.0/CDOEx, and ExOLEDB) and moved to “extended support” (Exchange Server MAPI Client, CDO 1.2.1). Don’t get too excited by the MAPI client — it’s not what you think:
Provides server applications a MAPI runtime for accessing Exchange.
Note: This is not the Outlook MAPI Client library that is included with Outlook.
Outlook’s Exchange MAPI Store provider, available in the Outlook MAPI Client library can also be used to access an Exchange mailbox or public folder.
If you’re going to start writing Exchange-aware applications, you should probably start looking at EWS first for future compatibility. If you’re trying to support Exchange 2003 at the same time…good luck.