Ximian, Inc., an open source software company, not only announced the 1.0 release of their Evolution e-mail client, but also the availability of Ximian Connector for Microsoft Exchange. Ximian Connector for Microsoft Exchange will finally allow users to connect to their business’ Exchange servers from their Linux workstations. Update by ELQ: An interesting editorial regarding Ximian’s flirt with Exchange can be found at the LinuxPlanet.With Ximian’s suite that now includes Evolution, Red Carpet software manager, a customized version of GNOME, and their own Desktop, Ximian has made great strides in bringing Linux to the desktop, not as an alternative, but as a primary OS. Ximian software runs on “broad range of leading Linux distributions and UNIX variants, including Solaris, Red Hat, Mandrake, SuSE, Debian, Yellow Dog, and Turbolinux.
Author’s note: “After installing Red Carpet on my Red Hat workstation, updating and installing new programs on Linux became even easier than installing software on Windows with .exe files. There’s simply no denying that this software goes a long way towards making Linux a viable standalone product.” — Adam Scheinberg
I wonder what exactly “finally connect to their business’s Exchange servers” means? I’m using a stock RH7.2 distro, and connecting to my employers Exchange server just fine thank you. I nicely asked the Exchange admin to export the directory and the public folders via IMAP and I was all set.
Prior to that change, I used Bynari’s client to natively connect to Exchange.
So, what exactly is Ximian bringing to the table with Evolution?
A migration path and alternative to Outlook?
Calendar stuff, so that managers can schedule their underlings for meetings without their knowledge. At my former place of employment, the Linux sysadmins were forced to use Outlook for their e-mail because some pointy-haired manager decided that everyone needed to use the calendar part of Exchange.
Had they not heard of a web browser? Did nobody tell them that Exchange servers provide a web interface to everything, and that it even works in both nutscrape and Mozilla?
I sympathize, as I’m also coerced into communicating with “that damn server”, aka Exchange 2K. However, if you read more closely, Ximian isn’t providing a free solution, so it’s absolutely nothing new. TradeClient (which is free, and free) came pretty close to providing all the same functionality. With the exception of calendering (which I’ll have to find out if it can be publically exported in any way) Mozilla Mail&News, Sylpheed, Mutt, etc can all work just fine.
It’s not that I don’t think that what Ximian is doing is useful, I just don’t like it being touted as original when it’s not.