Terry Myerson wrote about the future of Public Folder in Exchange Server. The text below I pasted from the original post about the new features of E12:
What is new in 12?
As mentioned in the summary, Outlook 2007 and E12 will include support for Public Folders. Of course, there are some details worth noting:
- E12 64-bit storage optimizations accrue to Public Folders â€“ providing a 70% reduction in IOPS requirements.
- E12 MONAD command line experience can be used to manage E12 public folder deployments.
- Outlook 2007 and E12 have greatly improved connection and synchronization logic, which accrues to both mailboxes and Public Folders.
- E12 is the first version of Exchange that will enable customers to turn off Public Folders. When Public Folders are not available, Outlook 2007 is the only version of Outlook that supports:
- Offline address book distribution through a BITS http connection to the E12 client access server.
- Free/busy lookups through the new E12 availability web service
- Outlook Security settings from the registry deployed through Group Policy
- Organizational forms will be unavailable (Infopath forms are so much better, I recommend checking them out)
- WSS v3 adds support for DL archiving and Outlook synchronization.
- E12 OWA will support viewing documents shared through SharePoint sites.
- E12 client access server has some limitations in public folder support: no IMAP, NNTP, nor OWA access to E12 public folders (OWA access to E2K and E2K3 public folders will be possible for E12 mailbox users).
- E12 Public Folders continue to support replication across geographically distributed sites. WSS v3 has limited support for these topologies.
All the best,