calendar sharing/groupware for hardy
loye.young at iycc.net
Fri Oct 12 15:08:33 UTC 2007
>So what are you actually suggesting here? Kolab with Toltec?
I don't have a particular dog in the race. As I said earlier, I've only heard
and read good thing about Kolab; I don't have any direct experience with it.
From all I've seen and heard, it is a good solution, but I'm not suggesting
it's the only or the best. It may or may not be. I'm willing to defer to the
team's consensus on that.
However, I do have experience with trying to implement mission-critical
changes at organizations. Most of my lessons have been learned the hard way,
and I wish to spare others that pain.
My point is that whatever we do _must_ provide a smooth, predictable, and
repeatable transition path, and that path _must_ include interoperability
with Outlook, before, during, and after implementation. Even if it means we
tolerate proprietary tools in the short run.
So here's a few of what I consider the requirements for an email solution:
* Easy-to-use GUI administration interface that doesn't require much thought
from the administrator (Ideally, we'd provide both a web-based interface and
a light-weight, desktop interface.
* Seamless interoperability with Outlook
* Security (encryption of messages, "hacker-proof" from the outside, etc.)
* Stability (always-on, with failover and hotswapping)
* Integrated with OpenLDAP user authentication and host management solution
* Reliable, simple, and fast disaster prevention and recovery
* A large developer community to ensure fast bug squashing
* Multilingual support
* Webmail interface
Yes, it will be tough to have it all, but these are the tasks before us.
I've said in a variety of places over the past year or so that widespread
Linux adoption in businesses (at least in the USA) will not happen until we
have top-quality alternatives to three products:
* Active Directory: Hats off to Microsoft for getting this one right. We are
making solid progress on comiing up with an alternative. The OpenLDAP work
that's going on is very solid, and paving the way for a complete replacement.
We still need an easy-to-use, guided interface. Several interfaces are in the
running. (One to consider is Maintain: http://maintainproject.osuosl.org/)
* Quickbooks, Peachtree, and other accounting products: Again, we have some
contenders in the race, but we are still a way to the goal line. Postbooks is
a good product, but still needs packaging for Debian/Ubuntu repositories.
GnuCash is getting close to business-class, but isn't there yet.
* Exchange / Outlook: From a technical perspective, we already have several
servers and clients that perform better, are standards compliant, and are
more secure. But our server solutions still do not have an easy-to-use,
guided interface the way Exchange does, and we don't provide good
interoperability for a heterogeneous client environment. Exchange may suck,
but it doesn't require much technical knowledge to administer. Similarly,
Outlook isn't standards-compliant, but the C[E,F,A,I]O types use it every day
and from their perspective, it just works.
Isaac & Young Computer Company
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