InfoWorld writes about Azaleos and their value-add plans around the Exchange 12 upgrade plan.  The quotes are from Keith McCall, who worked on the Exchange team at Microsoft as well as with the Domino "Dot" products (.Action, .Merchant) back in the day at Lotus::

Microsoft's plan for Exchange 12 to run only on 64-bit hardware will pose a problem for customers, McCall said. It will force them to incur costs of upgrading the 32-bit hardware on which their current versions of Exchange run to x64 hardware, he said.

"It's actually going to introduce a huge challenge for customers who have adopted the Exchange platform," McCall said. "Many of them have already incurred the cost of the hardware. With this new version of Exchange, Microsoft has introduced a discontinuity that is not only software- but hardware-based as well."
One other quote I found interesting in the article is
Microsoft executives said that research has shown that approximately 75 percent of organizations deploy new hardware along with the rollout of a new, major upgrade of Exchange Server, so it will be a normal procedure for them to purchase x64 hardware systems for Exchange 12.
Seems like quite a different pattern from Lotus Domino customers.

Link: InfoWorld: Startup aims to simplify x64 Exchange upgrades >

And to round out this topic, a Microsoft France blogger comments (en français) about the Exchange 12/64-bit announcement, and criticizes my bias in criticizing the announcement (follow that?).  His readers are smart, though, and one complains about having to do an upgrade "faire plaisir à mon fournisseur" -- roughly translated, to keep your vendor happy.

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