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Friday, November 30, 2012

Groupware: Zarafa and Zimbra

Zarafa is the leading European provider of open source groupware and collaboration software. The company is headquartered in Delft, the Netherlands. Zarafa's offices in Stuttgart, Hannover and Belo Horizonte (Brazil) provide local sales and support to more than 250 partners and thousands of customers worldwide. Our core product is the Zarafa Collaboration Platform (ZCP), the leading European open and compatible groupware platform that can be used as a drop-in Microsoft Exchange replacement for email, calendaring, collaboration and tasks. Using instant web meetings ( and other apps, ZCP is evolving into a full, flexible and future proof collaboration platform. Additionally, Zarafa recently launched Z-Archiver ( which decreases the need for expensive storage tiers for long-term archiving. Zarafa is acclaimed for its unrivalled expertise in calendar and mobile compatibility.

WebApp is Zarafa’s enterprise collaboration web client for home and general office usage. This next-generation client not only features basic functionality such as email, calendaring, meeting requests and tasks, it also includes multi-calendaring and advanced delegation via the browser. Thanks to the strongly integrated API of the WebApp, plug-ins can be developed easily and quickly. In this way, user driven innovation enables enterprises to remain aligned with future collaboration developments. People using WebApp already benefit from plug-ins that vary from chat, web meetings and Dropbox to Twitter.
The Zarafa WebApp can be installed as an additional package from Zarafa Collaboration Platform 7.0.8 and 7.1.0 and higher.
ClearOS 6.3 includes Zarafa groupware 

Zarafa is a good alternative to Microsoft Exchange too as it is open, it has an MAPI architecture that makes it scalable and compatible with Outlook (as well as with BlackBerry and ActiveSync handheld devices that use Z-Push), and it is an enterprise-class solution. Zarafa offers its partners ticketed support too, and beyond it, organisations can use Gmail and other Google Apps.
But is it worthwhile building your own alternative to Microsoft Exchange with Linux and Open Source software? “It depends on what you are using it for; true mail (SMTP) systems would benefit from the design and build. But for things like groupware it would not be worthwhile as it works out more expensive to build”, says Curtis.
Open Source specialist LinuxIT can assist you with building an Application Ready Infrastructure (ARI) as well as helping your organisation with the ongoing Linux systems management. “With that dependable, secure and stable base, it would not be difficult to float a simple mail stack, and you can cut costs on mailbox numbers by saving 75% with a simple email solution”, he concludes. So the writing could soon be on the wall for Microsoft Exchange; but then again, even Microsoft is adapting to the Cloud era.

Zimbra Collaboration Suite (ZCS) is a groupware email server and web client created by Zimbra, Inc., located in Palo Alto, California, USA.
The company was purchased by Yahoo! in September 2007,[1] and subsequently acquired by VMware on January 12, 2010.[2]
According to former Zimbra President and CTO Scott Dietzen, the name for Zimbra is derived from the song "I Zimbra" by Talking Heads.[3][citation needed]

The software consists of both client and server components. Two versions of Zimbra are available: an open-source version, and a commercially supported version ("Zimbra Network") with closed-source components such as a proprietary MAPI connector to Outlook for calendar synchronization.
Zimbra Desktop is a full-featured free desktop email client
The ZCS Web Client is a full-featured collaboration suite that supports email, group calendars and document sharing using an Ajax web interface that enables tool tips, drag-and-drop items, and right-click menus in the UI. Also included are advanced searching capabilities and date relations, online document authoring, "Zimlet" mashups and a full administration UI. It is written using the Zimbra Ajax Toolkit.
The ZCS Server uses several open source projects (see the section, Included open source projects). It exposes a SOAP application programming interface to all its functionality and is also an IMAP and POP3 server. The server runs on many distributions of Linux as well as on Mac OS X.
ZCS can synchronize mail, contacts, and calendar items with open-source mail clients such as Novell Evolution and also with proprietary clients such as Microsoft Outlook and Apple Mail, but only through proprietary connectors available exclusively in the commercially supported version. Zimbra also provides native two-way sync to many mobile devices (Nokia EseriesBlackBerry,Windows MobileiPhoneAndroid).
Zimbra Collaboration Server - Open Source Edition
Zimbra Collaboration Server (ZCS) Open Source Edition is available for you to test, evaluate, deploy, customize, and improve. In doing so, we hope you will participate in the Zimbra Community, so that we can work together to make ZCS a better product for everyone. It is free in perpetuity (providing you comply with the associated Zimbra Licensing Terms). It does not include Zimbra Support or software subscription.
The ZCS Open Source Edition software is provided in source code and binary formats:
  • Use the ZCS software in source code format (under the terms of this Zimbra Public License (ZPL) if you want to modify the software and create your own binaries (example: porting ZCS to a new platform)
  • If you do not want to change the code or build your own binaries, use the ZCS Open Source Edition binary distributions instead (licensed under the terms of Zimbra Public End-user License Agreement (EULA); these are simpler to get up and running, and you are still free to redistribute unmodified copies
If you have questions about which ZCS product edition is best for you, or wish to purchase a subscription plus support to the ZCS Network Edition, please contact us.
More Tips:
  • Can I revert the Network Edition Trial to the Open Source Edition? Absolutely, all your email data, etc. will be left intact if you choose not to purchase ZCS Network Edition
  • ZCS server downloads are intended for administrators and developers. (Confused? Please see What Version of Zimbra is Right for Me?)
  • First time installing? Use the latest 64-bit platform where possible on your new systems.

Latest releases of Zimbra Collaboration Suite Open Source Edition

8.0.1 GA Release Release Notes | 3rd Party Open Source Licenses | Windows Open Source Licenses
PlatformDownload 64-bit
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 664bit x86 (MD5)
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 1164bit x86 (MD5)
Ubuntu 10.04 LTS64bit x86 (MD5)
Ubuntu 12.04 LTS64bit x86 (MD5)

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