Ready, set, download! We told you a couple of weeks ago it's coming, and the day is here: the Entourage Exchange Web Services (EWS) beta is available today. Go to Mactopia to apply to be a part of the beta.
What does Entourage EWS beta bring you? If you're on Exchange 2007 SP1, it brings you a world of awesome, including:
- support for attachments in Exchange calendar events
- synchronisation of Exchange notes
- synchronisation of Exchange tasks
- synchronisation of Exchange categories
- improved autodiscovery of your Exchange settings
- improved performance
- availability of logging for diagnostic purposes
After you have backed up your database, downloaded the beta, and installed it, play around with it. If you run into an issue, go back to the Microsoft Connect website and use the form there to tell us about it. Likewise, if you've got a suggestion, use the form to tell us about that too. You can comment here as much as you want to, but that's not going to resolve anything. Putting it into MS Connect is a much better thing to do -- Connect is hooked up to our internal tracking system, so we can easily get stuff out of Connect and into our system for further investigation.
To use Entourage EWS beta, you must connect to an Exchange 2007 SP1 server. The Entourage EWS beta will not work with Exchange 2003 (unless you are connecting to it through IMAP. If your server is a POP or IMAP server, you can check out the beta if you want to, but you won't see anything different -- our IMAP and POP implementations have not changed.
Also, to use the Entourage EWS beta, you must already have Office 2008 Special Media Edition or Office 2008 Standard Edition. If you have Office 2008 Home and Student Edition, you will not be able to install the Entourage EWS beta.
Please remember: this is beta software. It is unsupported. It could call down the wrath of the gods upon your head. If you are not comfortable with the potential of the wrath of the gods raining down upon your head, you should not download the beta. We don't think that there's anything still lurking in the corners that might call the wrath of the gods to come raining down upon your head, but the nature of beta software is such that it could still be there. If you're going to try out the beta, make sure that you have a fresh backup of your Entourage 2008 database before starting. If the wrath of the gods does rain down upon your head, or you have second thoughts about inviting such a thing, having a fresh back up of your Entourage 2008 database means that you'll be able to go back.
Personally, I've been using pre-alpha versions of Entourage EWS for months. So join the party!
Edited on 17 August 2009: The final version of Entourage for Web Services is now available, so you should update!