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Thread: Zarafa Outlook support discontinued?

  1. #11
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    133
    Hi,

    we have 120 subscribtions and if the outlook support will be discontinued, we need to cancel these subscribtions and change to an alternative server like M$ exchange. We didn't want exchange because it was too expensive. The subscriptions ends ~01-2016.

    We chose zarafa 2 years ago, because of the good Outlook support/features. It is good to hear that you spend 75% of your ressources for Outlook, because THIS is the standard for most users of companies (including us). A webinterface is not an alternative for our users.

    Best regards

  2. #12
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Posts
    22
    Hi Zafara produt team,

    +1 from me to all complaint above.

    I will be unable to use Zarafa without Outlook support. Maybe you are right with the trend to webmail, but all - yes all - of my customers largely "depend" on outlook. I think the Outlook thing is your USP.
    BTW: For example Zimbra had a far more featured Web-Mail in 2007 ...

    Just my opinion. Best regards
    Andreas

    (we own also some license..)
    Last edited by andreasgrab; 20-01-2015 at 02:10 PM. Reason: add last line

  3. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    117
    another vote for continued outlook support. we have 160 subscriptions and management dept depends on outlook. with these news I'll probably have to look for another solution. WebApp is great for casual users but the hardcore outlook people will have a fit with this and probably won't settle on webapp. We looked to upgrade from Exchange 2003 mainly for Outlook integration and WebApp was just a nice improvement over MS webapp.
    Last edited by yaboc; 28-01-2015 at 04:29 PM.

  4. #14
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Posts
    6
    +1 on Outlook being a must. The only reason I look for alternatives to Zarafa now is to find something as good that doesn't make me pay for more than 3 connections.

  5. #15
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Leonberg, Germany
    Posts
    273

    Unhappy Sad news

    I personally think it is very sad if the Zarafa Client Connector gets really discontinued.
    Last edited by rsc; 21-01-2015 at 12:16 PM.

  6. #16
    I understand the Zarafa view: Many work with Outlook compatibility (and this is the main feature for most customers in my business environment). Cause of this much less time for innovations. Webapp is a good app, but can't replace Outlook. Trend is going with mobiles and so on. But Zarafa Servers are working in business environments. Most people sitting in front of desktop computers (not mobiles). They need an application like Outlook cause they work mainly with email, calendar(s) and contacts. A desktop application, not a web application (rename webapp does not help!). For personal use webapp is ok, but are you using Zarafa mainly for personal use? The additional features in webapp are cool. Do I need them !mainly! in daily business work?
    Zarafa is the last good alternative to Exchange. Loosing Outlook compatibility means loosing most of the customers.
    Microsoft is going more and more with web based services and cloud. I don't want to use this with my business. I want my data in my company (on my Zarafa server?).
    Please maintain an Outlook interface! Zarafaclient as today or Activesync. Something with the features being possible at the moment. Or develop a desktop client like Outlook. Maybe take Thunderbird and write a Zarafa Plugin or rewrite Thunderbird (at the moment someone can use Thunderbird with Zarafa - it's not the same as using Outlook with shared folders and calendars).


    Regards,
    Gunnar

  7. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    South West London, United Kingdom
    Posts
    178
    Ok if you want to work with WebApp that's fine but to do this you'll need to improve a few things.

    * Filters : I can't stress this enough that advance filters are vital for e-mail and if you want to bring users to use this then you'll need provide filters such as mark as red, flagging moving to sub folders etc.
    * Reliable web interface: People can't be having things where if you mark 20 e-mails as read you get a random error message also it would be nice to be able to view more then a set amount of e-mails per page.
    * Tabbed mailboxes: You need to provide support for viewing multiple shared mailboxes in different tabls like you do for tabs of calendar and contacts etc. Thunderbird provides this and it's amazing webapp should impliment this to make functioning better and also provides a new feature that outlook doesn't have that people can get behind.
    * Offline mode: This will be quite benificial for people that are out and about you should provide people a choice to cache certain folders and inboxes in a browser like the new OWA so people can view e-mails when they don't have wifi or are on the train, that way they can check e-mails. Perhaps a cached mode they can use so it automatically updates new e-mails when internet connection returns. This will help big time if your going to make this a browser only e-mail system for people who don't want to BYOD for work e-mails.

    I'm sure there are many other things I'm missing out but perhaps if we all try and add suggestions that we think they can get behind they can take it into consideration.
    IT Engineer,
    ClearOS 5.2, Zarafa 7.1.x
    ClearOS 6.5, Zarafa 7.1.10-7.2.x

  8. #18
    Hey RSC.

    @rsc:
    Although your initial post was quite straight forward ;-) I have to admit that I liked it since it quoted a lot of strong points. You might re-add some of your points?

    @all:
    Being a little bit familiar with IT myself, I agree with Zarafa, that future IT systems are most likely to be web based. I personally could change to a web-interface. But: I have to admit that Zarafa's strong point is not the web interface (at least not yet), it is imho the combination of Outlook, Z-Push and web-interface and in that order. I am self-employed and I believe that most of the business world needs outlook in various ways for far longer than 2016. And let's face it, an IT admin has to follow the customers needs (see Linus Torvalds interesting comment about Kernel backwards compatibility in ), that makes Linux strong. All in all I am surprised that Zarafa strongly considers dropping outlook and leaves the outlook field to Microsoft. If one looks at the competitor Scalix and there downfall beginning in 2007 (see Heise as well) which was - according to Heise - quite strongly related to the negligence of Scalix's Outlook-Connector, I doubt that dropping Outlook is the right decision.

    The only solution to drop Outlook I can think of is to release the code to opensource - as RSC said. That would be a clear statement saying that Zarafa goes towards future but does not want to restrain others to keep it going.

    Cheers, Fritz.

    P.S. This is purely my opinion and I do not want to tell or persuade anyone. I just want to share my thoughts.
    Last edited by hzr345; 21-01-2015 at 05:22 PM.

  9. #19
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    431
    In my experience the people that make the purchasing decisions are not technical, and Microsoft's marketing works with non-technical people. I am always battling with the boss here to use non-Microsoft products, not because of some open source ethos, not because it's cheaper, but because most of the time it's just better. Our boss wants to move to Office 365 and dump Zarafa and our excellent document management system just because one has a Microsoft sticker! Take away Outlook and you take away the Microsoft sticker and that will be enough to move away from Zarafa. The more technical and dare I say younger staff may well listen to the argument to move away from Outlook but the higher up the tree the less technical the people are, and the more resistant to move away from MS they become regardless of what the IT dept says. It's these people that make the decisions and hold the purse strings.

    Dropping Outlook is a mistake!

  10. #20
    @chomes

    Thank you for your feedback on WebApp. A lot of development on WebApp is going on right now. Most new features and improvements in WebApp are being designed with customer feedback in mind. As you already mention, more input from customers helps us improve.

    I would like to dive a little more in-depth on the topics you mentioned in your post:

    If I correctly understand your description of filters I can mention that in WebApp 2.0 (to be launched soon) already contains some of these items. Mark as read and setting categories are accessible via the right mouse button. Moving items can be done via drag-and-drop. Some of these features are also available via rules at in your personal settings.

    I was unaware of the 'random error message' issue. Have you already opened a ticket with our support team?

    With regards to the 'set amount of emails per page', we are currently looking into improvement options there (under active development). It will not be in WebApp 2.0 final release, but keep an eye open for beta announcements in the next couple of months, so you can be the first to give it a test drive.

    Thank you for this suggestion, I will keep it in mind. Opening additional mailboxes is already possible in WebApp (provided you have access). The next version (2.1) User Experience will be a major development theme and this might be a nice way of showing these mailboxes.

    Offline mode is a lot more complex. Based on customer and partner feedback we got at Zarafa Tour '14 we have been focusing on Web Meetings and Files, in addition to the HTML editor usability and compatibility. With regards to offline, we are looking into different technologies we could use to have 'offline support', but no development is going on at this time.

    If you have any other feedback or questions, feel free to open a topic here, or contact me directly via email (b.huisman [at] zarafa.com).

    Bob Huisman, Product Manager at Zarafa
    Last edited by bobh; 21-01-2015 at 07:51 PM.

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