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Oracle and Mozilla Foundation Work Quietly Together 167

KenDaMan writes "CNet is running a story about the ties between Oracle and the Mozilla Foundation. Oracle hired three people to work on Mozilla Lightning. This project, which aims to integrate Mozilla's calendar application, Sunbird, with its e-mail application, Thunderbird, is believed to be key to cracking the market dominance of Microsoft Outlook. Is Oracle getting set make an Open Source offering?"
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Oracle and Mozilla Foundation Work Quietly Together

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  • Quietly... (Score:4, Funny)

    by imag0 ( 605684 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:33PM (#12530507) Homepage
    "CNet is running a story about the ties between Oracle and the Mozilla Foundation..."

    Yeah. A running news story on at least two large news sites. Pretty good job keeping the lid on this one, Oracle and Moz!
  • evolution is already there
    • by CdBee ( 742846 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:38PM (#12530543)
      yes, but a Gnome app will never be really happy running on Windows or OSX due to the overhead in terms of libraries to load. XUL is fully crossplatform and has the same requirements on any system - and with the coming dominance of Firefox, there are a lot of people out there learning XUL programming.
      • XUL isn't exactly lightweight either. I'd guess it brings at least as much overhead as GTK. But it does look more native, that's the point.
      • Very true but Thunderbird is never going to be a
        fully functional Groupware client like Evolution
        is. Evolution has a built in calendar and it can
        auto-sync with Exchange and any *Nix e-mail

        As a side note I'm having a hard time
        understanding why ClamAV/Win + Thunderbird
        hasn't created a pop3/smtp hook like it (ClamWin)
        has for Outlook yet. I'd much rather recommend
        ClamWin to newbie's instead of AVG but until
        they get e-mail support for Thunderbird I can't
        change my recommendation since I'm pushing
        • Sorry, but are you the Thunderbird project lead? If not, I'm confused where you get such definitive insight into it's future direction. I'm a fan of Evolution myself, but presently it's Linux only and thus not an option for the majority of enterprises. Also, Evolution's Exchange support is far from seamless. It relies on OWA WebDAV which doesn't expose the full Exchange functionality, causes some serious latency issues, and is unavailable in many enterprises for security reasons.

          I'm also confused why y
        • Of course normal Tunderbird isn't going to be a fully functional groupware client;" that's what Lightning is for. And Lightning, not Thunderbird, is what TFA is about. ; )
      • I believe that Bill Murray and his crowd dealt with XUL in the original GhostBusters film.
      • Slightly OT here, but wouldn't it do XUL a world of good to work in IE too? I download and registered the mozilla activex control ( [] ) and I can run XUL apps in IE now (after setting my activex permissions appropriately). The plug-in seems to run XUL apps just fine, and it's a relatively small download. Is there any plan to market/package this activex as a browser plug-in? It seems like you'd get an explosion of XUL apps then, with nearly 100% of the browser m
        • At the moment, I would estimate that 100% of the people who even know what XUL is already use Firefox. Moreover, I can't think of a single reason why anyone wanting to use XUL apps wouldn't be able to use Firefox anyway.
          • this will allow XUL business apps even when some people refuse to use anything but IE

          • From what I gather, an upcoming goal for Firefox development is to package all the back-end engine stuff into a "XUL Runner" runtime platform that could be installed separate from any one application. Firefox itself would then be just a ~1MB bundle of XUL code, chrome, etc., and Thunderbird, Sunbird, and other apps could be equally lightweight.
    • Funny you should say that: I just installed evolution again; I used to use it when I ran my business.

      Tell me how I can have it delete files off the server when deleted locally. I dont see the option. It appears to be removed but it doesnt.

      Thunderbird can do that and is easily configured.

    • So is kontact... kontact is the best pim currently in existence and even has a full blown groupware server behind it, porting contact would make the most sense, but is prevented by the Qt3 license which is only QPLed on Linux. Hopefully Qt4 will cause a port of the many gems kde has to offer (Koffice, Kontact and the Groupware server behind it, Konqueror and others to windows.
    • Both Thunderbird with Sunbird and Evolution are still lagging behind.
      Evolution is a wonderfully crafted client, with great UI, but it crashes way too often to be treated seriously. Few days ago i added new account, and didn't noticed that my email provider require SMTP atuthentification. With that option unmarked Evolution crashed whenever i tried to send an email. Bad.
      Thunderbird is no better - way it handles multiple accounts (and who doesn't have many accounts?) and SMTP's is unacceptable and really hard
      • 1) Build Mozilla suite
        2) Break Mozilla suite apart, creating projects like Firefox, Thunderbird and Sunbird
        3) Merge pieces back together again

        Does anyone else think this is kind of weird?
        • Actually, it's not a bad progression when you think about. Based on the roadmap and other info, here's how it's breaking out.
          1. Build toolkit for a single monolithic application (Seamonkey on Gecko, XUL, etc.)
          2. Migrate the functionality into seperate apps built on the toolkit (FF, TB, etc.)
          3. Turn the toolkit into a runtime platform (XULRunner)
          4. Port the apps to the runtime platform so you can get back the integration you lost from step 1 and reduce the footprint (FF and TB 1.5 or 2.0)
  • Well.. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Sv-Manowar ( 772313 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:35PM (#12530522) Homepage Journal
    Its good to see big companies like Oracle working on alternatives to Microsoft's exchange server software, Sunbird will be the better for this collaboration
    • Re:Well.. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by 0x461FAB0BD7D2 ( 812236 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:39PM (#12530554) Journal
      Oracle is by no means doing this philanthropically. They're doing it because Ellison despises Gates and Ballmer, and he's seen what Firefox has done.

      He's a bragart, and if Lightning delivers what Firefox has, you can be sure he'll be publicly thumbing his nose at Gates.
      • Oracle is by no means doing this philanthropically. They're doing it because Ellison despises Gates and Ballmer, and he's seen what Firefox has done.

        And the problem with this is exactly what?


        Carlos Cesar
    • On the surface, it looks to me like the Mozilla boys want to bring down Bill and Microsoft so bad, that they are perfectly willing to dance with The Devil themselves. Reminds me of an old Twilight Zone episode...
    • Interestingly, Oracle already owns (and occasionally half-heartedly markets) a full-blown Exchange competitor: Corporate Time Server [], which they acquired along with its developer, a Canadian company called Steltor.

      Circa 1999-2001, CTS was really the only full-blown UNIX-based replacement for Exchange available: you installed a client-side plugin in Outlook 2000, and it made the CTS calendar server plus any conforming IMAP server look like an Exchange server to Outlook. It was neat, but a little flaky on t
  • Testing the Waters (Score:1, Interesting)

    by CyberNigma ( 878283 )
    Oracle is probably just testing the waters before trying to dominate a field that it can't just buy. I don't see them as pro-open source, more like use open-source just until we come out on top.
    • Oracle are using open-source to accelerate the development of a calendar client. It says nothing about the calendar server, and, as Oracle's target is presumably to create a competitor to the expensive Exchange rather than the relatively cheap Outlook, the server's what they'll keep in-house.
  • by Stonent1 ( 594886 ) <stonent@sto[ ]t. ... t ['nen' in gap]> on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:37PM (#12530537) Journal
    But they are probably wanting you to use an oracle back end.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      If the source is open and under a suitably free license, it will get ported to postgresql and others pretty quickly.
      • by Anonymous Coward
        I don't imagine such a thing would be making direct ODBC calls to the RDBMS. It's probably going through Oracle's filesystem layer, and/or use various fancy protocols like WebDAV, LDAP, before hitting the storage layer.

        Basically if it was easy to make a 2-Tier Groupware application using just Mozilla and Postgres, we'd have one already.
        • by hedora ( 864583 )
          According to mozilla's site, the current version uses an embedded SQL engine for the calendar. It will probably use LDAP for address book stuff, since thunderbird already does that.

          I suspect the point of this project is to implement the middleware that is needed to allow collaboration between multiple calendar users. As long as everything written on top of the SQL/LDAP interface is open source, then small organizations could drop in something like postgres, while larger organizations would probably want
    • by Anonymous Coward
      There is nothing wrong with an Oracle back-end. As others have pointed out it will be ported onto postgres toute de suite. Let's face it Oracle loves postgres because people who start out small and mid=size come to Oracle's door when the load get's really large. Loads only get really large when business is good; when business is good there is money to be spent on a big time db for the back end. If you started out on psql the port to Oracle is pretty easy.

    • Well if JDeveloper is any indication, that won't necessarily be the case. Sure it will probably be easier to use Oracle but I know JDeveloper will allow you to use any Application Server with any database.
  • Wow! (Score:5, Funny)

    by metalligoth ( 672285 ) <> on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:38PM (#12530544)

    Is Oracle getting set make an Open Source offering?

    I dunno. Is Slashdot getting set make good English on the Editor?

    • Re:Wow! (Score:3, Funny)

      by Timesprout ( 579035 )
      You are mistaken in your reading of the sentence. Set is an OS coder who works for Oracle, and the offering is a chicken. Oracle are trying to appease the coding gods and Set is the only person who can make the offering because of his religious beliefs (and the fact that his manager beat him into submission with a stick.)
    • Is Oracle getting set make an Open Source offering?

      Maybe they are setting up us the bomb [] instead
  • benefit (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Renraku ( 518261 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:39PM (#12530553) Homepage
    At least they're doing something that could benefit the public that doesn't include 'an exciting new offer and great deal!'
  • Dear god no... (Score:1, Interesting)

    Please don't make Thunderbird any more bloated than it alread is. Why must a calendar be integrated with e-mail anyways?
    • Re:Dear god no... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by larien ( 5608 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:44PM (#12530591) Homepage Journal
      I always thought this until I started working at a big company and realised just how quick & easy it was to have calendar & mail in one place with todo lists & other stuff.
    • Re:Dear god no... (Score:5, Informative)

      by R.Mo_Robert ( 737913 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:45PM (#12530596)

      Please don't make Thunderbird any more bloated than it alread is. Why must a calendar be integrated with e-mail anyways?

      Had you read the Mozilla Lightning [] link, you would have seen that this is a "Thunderbird extension for tightly-integrated calendar functionality." A Thunderbird extension. (That said, I could see this eventually being an optional component included with the installer so that it's more Outlook-like and doesn't require users to go somewhere to download it, assuming they even know about it in the first place.)

      • Very good point - and one of the beautiful things about what mozilla, apache, etc do - if you need it, there's extensions or modules or plugins...

        Keep what yah need, trim the rest. And if you want to develop something for it, have at it!
    • Re:Dear god no... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by dzarn ( 760066 ) <dzarn+slashdot.amovita@net> on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:46PM (#12530605)
      Why must a calendar be integrated with e-mail anyways?

      Because it's great to get an invitation via email, which you can add to your calendar with one click, rather than re-entering the info?

      Because I leave my email program running all the time, and I'd rather not have to leave another calendar program running as well?

      Because both email and calendars have a pretty integral relation to a to-do list, and it's nice not to have to keep track of 2 lists, or do the whole copy-paste thing from one to the other. I just click on an email, mark it for follow-up by X date, and it's in my to-do list. Same with stuff I need to get done before an appointment.
      • Re:Dear god no... (Score:2, Insightful)

        by kubalaa ( 47998 )
        Your wishes are relics of an MSDOS era when only one application could run at one time, so your data was inextricably tied to the application you used it in. Here's a brilliant idea: store your calendar, emails, etc. in FILES, and provide a uniform API to search, retrieve, and update this information. Then your email program can add stuff to your calendar and visa versa without them having to share a window on your desktop. Why, it's almost like a DATABASE.
    • Re:Dear god no... (Score:4, Informative)

      by Xoder ( 664531 ) <> on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:46PM (#12530609) Homepage
      Its for office automation. I used to use Outlook at work, and the one awesome feature was that my boss could just send me appointments, and I could accept them into my schedule.

      Rest of the program was shit, though.
    • by spectrokid ( 660550 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @03:06PM (#12530695) Homepage
      My boss sends me an invite to an annoying meeting. I click "accept" (unfortunately). It gets copied to my agenda and synchronised to my phone. 15 minutes before the meeting, my phone starts beeping and sais "QM meeting, room AX5". All with ONE mouseclick. Do this in open source and I will WALK all the way to Redmond to tell Billy he should stick a fork in it.
      • Which phone do you use?

        Seriously.. I have been having a hard time getting different cell phones to sync to calendars.. I have a Nokia 3300 which has a option for calendar sync. It can sync over the internet. I just have to type in the url of the server and it will do it.. Problem is there is no documentation and I have no idea what type of server etc to point it to.. or what type of server I must buy in order to set one up...

        any help?
        • I have an old 6030i (or something), I use the windows synching software from Nokia (which sucks like a jet engine). This would be one area where open source/open standards could REALLY make progress. Imagine I come within Bluetooth range of a colleages laptop. The laptop sais "I don't know this dude so I'm not giving him access to my Calender, but if he wants to talk to that Exchange/Oracle server on the network, hey what the heck! My phone could then ID itself to the server and access my inbox/calende
    • Re:Dear god no... (Score:4, Informative)

      by SlashDread ( 38969 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @03:26PM (#12530794)
      Because mailing appointments and invites and auto arranging meetings is Very Handy for largish workgroups.
      As in, cost saving for planning and secretary work.

      Please gimme it in firefox with thunderbird connected to a choice of webservers, a choice of Db's and I'll be rolling this out pronto.
      Heck, I could start a business around it.
    • You'll find out.

  • by R.Mo_Robert ( 737913 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:40PM (#12530561)

    MozillaZine is running a story, too, and it's probably a little more truthful...

    ZDNet Tries to Get to the Bottom of the Oracle-Mozilla Relationship []

  • Not Anymore (Score:1, Funny)

    by zepmaid ( 694112 )
    Oracle works quietly with Mozilla
    Apparently not anymore.. Slashdot knows!!!
  • The real challenge (Score:5, Insightful)

    by orangeguru ( 411012 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:40PM (#12530563) Homepage
    Outlook is not the real key to beat Microsoft on the Office front - but Exchange.

    As soon as you can free companies from the Exchange lock in and offer a better alternative then you have a chance.

    Most people for example love OpenOffice, but won't switch, since they also need Outlook which is connected to the data on the Exchange server.

    No Exchange server - no underlaying windows server. No Outlook - no Microsoft Office.

    So what's needed is a strong Thunderbird for Office slaves and an Exchange replacement - plus total data import.
    • by peacefinder ( 469349 ) * <{alan.dewitt} {at} {}> on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:57PM (#12530663) Journal
      Ah, if only that were so. My lock-in to Office is mainly through Outlook, and I don't have an Exchange server. OOo is perfectly adequate for every general-office need we have, except for one person who needs Excel.

      The problem is that our Oracle-based electronic medical records application will only support Outlook for sending secure e-mails. I would love to put Mozilla everywhere, but instead I had to buy Outlook licenses. It's downright painful.

      Anything that makes Mozilla easier for the EMR app's developers to support is a good idea in my book. If Oracle likes Moz, that'll help me convince the EMR vendor that it's worthy of their support too.
      • What you don't understand is that Oracle is so large its like three companies (now four with peoplesoft) in one. Applications division (E-Business Suite) is distinctly oriented on Windows and they are strongly dependent on them and create strong dependencies on Windows like this. On the other hand Server Technologies (Database) is the linux friendly division and is by now almost 100% linux everything. (Development, support, testing, utilities, plugins, everything...) Then there is the Collaboration Suite, w
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Let's be honest -- Exchange Server is the worst groupware server on the market. It's slow, was unreliable for years, and has retarded limitations like a 16GB mail store in the standard version.

      The only thing that's ever sold Exchange is the Outlook client and the good integration with MS Office (plus the MS brandname). If Lotus wasn't so fugly and locked into "SmartSuite", they would still own the groupware market.
    • I have an honest question here - why is it you need e-mail and calendar functionality bundled into one package? They kinda seem to go together like water and oil. My dad, in fact, still swears by MS Schedule+ (released yonks ago) because it "doesn't include all the e-mail junk with it", and because apparently there's some problem with Outlook's profile files not being properly readable from a remote machine.

      I use neither.
    • OpenExchange? []
    • by H310iSe ( 249662 )
      I too disagree that Exchange is the key, I've been looking for a windows based calendar/email/contacts integrated client forever and can't find anything that can touch outlook. And that's not a very high bar to cross. If ANYone comes out w/ one I'll have my clients off Outlook so fast it'll make MS's head spin. Screw Exchange, for small businesses (all my clients are businesses w/ less than 20 employees) I can work just fine without it. I mean, sure, there needs to be a way to share the calendar info, bu
      • Webcal : []

        Thunderbird - disconnected IMAP & postfix & squirel mail.

        They had to trust me at first.....but now my company will never look back - Oh and ban outlook unless they absolutly have to use it, like the accountant, who emails directly from MYOB - ie MAPI - then just configure outlook express to send email, but only open Thunderbird to read the reply.

        We do keep a windows PDC for central authentication, look at winbind from the samba install - a daemon that y
    • by ozric99 ( 162412 )
      Outlook is not the real key to beat Microsoft on the Office front - but Exchange.

      No, you have it backwards. The lock-in is with Outlook, not Exchange. Nobody cares what's running in the server room and Outlook generally plays well with other vendors' server offerings. The sticking point is having to retrain everyone to use a different application for email, calendar, discussions, collaboration etc (not to mention syncing with all manner of handheld devices).

    • I agree with you.

      A seamless alternative to Exchange is needed to open the corporate market.

      I think seamless interoperability with M$ Word cannot be underestimated. Every anecdotal account I hear of pioneers trying linux and going back almost always involves a story of end user complaints about trying to open MS Word files.
  • by bheer ( 633842 ) <> on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:44PM (#12530589)
    Oracle has been trying since forever for enterprises to take up its Enterprise email offering (which works with Outlook AFAIK. I'm pretty sure they'd love to give a free rich client to their customers, which could explain their love for Mozilla Calendar. And yeah, if open standards-based Calendaring catches on, one of the biggest reasons to use proprietary software (Notes/Exchange) goes away.

    If Open-Sourcers had a strategy department, they'd make Mozilla Calendar the most important product they have to ship, far more important than Firefox. Unfortunately (or fortunately for IBM/MS) things don't quite work that way.
  • by NitsujTPU ( 19263 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:44PM (#12530593)
    Is Oracle getting set make an Open Source offering?


    Oracle offers a product that aims to compete head to head with Microsoft's suite of collaboration products.

    One of my former clients was looking to use this software in their enterprise, which, at the time, was using mostly Microsoft products on this front. My impression of the matter was the that the only reason that they were even considering this was because they had a site license for Oracle's database, development, and web services products, and had on-site consultants offering solutions to them.

    IE, Oracle certainly had their ear already.

    Oracle probably views Thunderbird as a way to break Microsoft's hold on this sector of the market. By restoring some competition on this front, they could market their products more effectively.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Oracle also has a fair sized group working on the Linux kernel and some people working on problems with RedHat, SuSE and Asianux related to clustering, performance and other aspects important for the database being running smoothly on these systems. You can get a lot of information on the OTN about these projects.

    As far as the collaboration suite goes, there is a work on a plugin for Thunderbird to integrate the Oracle Calendar system and I am sure there are other efforts I am not aware of.

    This level o

  • Another secret? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by zappepcs ( 820751 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @02:52PM (#12530632) Journal
    Here's a thought.....
    Its not secret anymore. With the release of Solaris 10 as free, is it any wonder that Oracle would look at opening its market share a bit with a similar move.

    I think the real news here is that F/OSS is having an effect on the software industry. I believe that effect is a good one. Solaris 10 might not be the best thing I've ever seen, its a start. Oracle working in their domain space to open up things like CRM, SAP, and other areas is a damn good thing. If they can produce something that opens these and other markets to F/OSS then the competition gets tougher and more wide spread.

    The opening of Microsoft dominated markets is nothing but good news. Any weakening of their grip on the software industry in any domain opens up that market so even proprietary vendors have a shot at it.

    This move doesn't surprise me at all, in fact, I believe that we will see much more of this. It costs very little in terms of lock-in and other long term financial factors to work with F/OSS to open up a market that is practically locked down by a single vendor, whether that vendor is Microsoft or not.

    A long time ago, it was said that you could never get fired for buying big blue. That kind of reputation is one that Microsoft never achieved. The software industry began changing so fast that it never could get that reputation, but the fallout of the fast paced changes is that if you have a reputation of great support and super value for money you will end up with market share. This is still in the process of becomming a defacto standard.

    As F/OSS products become more technically and financially strong, it is in the best interests of any software vendor to work with those products, even promote and support them.

    A product or two that runs on an Oracle backend product and directly competes with Microsoft etc. is a good thing... it opens up the market to more competition. If it will run on Oracle, it can probably run on mySQL etc. What options it ends up with is of little concern if it takes market share from the dominant player in that market.

    Since people with little budgets are not Oracles main revenue stream, these new products would directly mangle revenue streams of Microsoft and make Oracle the version that you would use if you had to scale to large size operations.

    It just makes sense.
  • I will not be able to entirely wean myself off outlook until an alternative can support mobile calendars on pocketpc and palmos.
    • What do you mean by this? Do you mean you want to sync your pocketPC or PalmOS to your desktop calendar? or do you mean that you want to sync your PocketPC or PalmOS to the calendar SERVER?

      I have seen lots of desktop sync's.. but server sync is the real solution. And it is the only long term solution. The problem is that I haven't seen any good services which will sync these over the internet.. They all currently need desktop sync as a go-between :(
  • Exchange Killers (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Doc Ruby ( 173196 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @03:08PM (#12530704) Homepage Journal
    My favorite way to break the MS control of corporate groupware is the OSS project Open-Xchange []. It's a Linux server that replaces MS-Exchange (without users even needing to know), with an Outlook plugin, and Evolution compatibility (through open standards). It is a hub server that uses standard interop with other server types, like Samba, SMTP, LDAP, HTTP, and SQL, so the services it bundles to the client can be delivered by existing servers, or the installer's choice of (standards) compatible ones. The source is open, and it's got a documented plugin API, as well as an open, documented data schema available to any additional apps. And it's the core of Novell's GroupWise suite, so it can be upgraded to a version supported by Novell's global staff. It runs on Linux, so its uptime and scalability are reliable. With O-X working, it's no longer necessary to rely on MS Exchange to get MS Exchange features.

    FWIW, I'd love to see people take the Mozilla/Oracle code for improving Fire/Thunderbird, and improve their integration with O-X. That kind of cross-pollination is perfect for OSS, and leaves proprietary competition, like MS Exchange, standing behind like a stick in the mud.
    • >> And it's the core of Novell's GroupWise suite,

      Actually, it's the core of Novell SUSE OpenExchange Server. GroupWise is a closed-source application.

  • Don't think so (Score:3, Interesting)

    by rsax ( 603351 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @03:30PM (#12530823)
    Thunderbird, is believed to be key to cracking the market dominance of Microsoft Outlook.

    I doubt that. What makes Microsoft LookOut so appealing to big business, or even small business for that matter, is not that it's a great email client - it's the intergration with MS Exchange. Shared contact list, scheduling, folders, all from a central location. Is there a Mozilla server in the works?

    You can have shared address books using LDAP but can you modify those contacts directly from the email client? Until that can happen lets not get too excited.

    • I doubt that. What makes Microsoft LookOut so appealing to big business, or even small business for that matter, is not that it's a great email client - it's the intergration with MS Exchange. Shared contact list, scheduling, folders, all from a central location. Is there a Mozilla server in the works?

      Hmm...maybe that's why Oracle is involved? I hear they're pretty good at writing servers...
    • Re:Don't think so (Score:3, Interesting)

      by SolusSD ( 680489 )
      I don't know if Mozilla Lightning will allow you to do that, but KDE's kontact (Combines KDE's Kmail, Address book, Calander, Notes, Journal, Aggregator, etc) does do all of the above. I believe the last several releases of it put it leaps and bounds over any other Personal Information Manager. Spam filters, antivirus filters, and hell it even reminds you to attach a file to your email if you refered to attaching a file in the email! ;) I encourage everyone running KDE out there to give it a shot.
  • Exchange Killer? (Score:5, Informative)

    by tzanger ( 1575 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @03:40PM (#12530875) Homepage

    Oracle already bought out Steltor's CorporateTime, which was an Exchange Killer, and then buried it in proprietary bullshit. I've since moved over to Exchange4Linux [], which, barring the poor name, I feel really is an Exchange Killer.

    Basically the entire thing runs inside of Postfix and PostgreSQL. It's written in Python, and the server software is 100% open source. The Outlook Connector is not (it too is written in Python). So far it's been working great (huge datastore, calendaring, delegation, it all works). Basically N-H went about it differently than all the others: instead of making Outlook wrap around open services, they made the open services conform to Microsoft's bastardized MAPI. I have to say this has owrked better than anything else I've found.

    • We can only hope that Oracle sees the light and opens CorporateTime. Back when Netscape was licensing the (then) CS&T product (which eventually became Steltor CorporateTime) for use as "Netscape Calendar Server", the combination of Netscape Communicator and Calendar Server was the *only* product on the market capable of doing what Exchange does...unfortunately, as we all know, Netscape dropped the ball.

      I've commented in the past on the limitations of Sunbird, so I won't rehash that here.

      I still can't
  • by notany ( 528696 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @03:42PM (#12530896) Journal
    Using open source against your competitors:
    1. If competitor has product that is clear market leader, make your product open source. That hurts competitors. Just giving up helps them.
    2. If competitor has another product that is not directly competing with your product, cut their money flow by developing free alternative.
    I think Oracle using number 2 against microsoft.
  • I read that as... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by SharpFang ( 651121 )
    Is Oracle getting set make an Open Office suffering?"
  • by denis-The-menace ( 471988 ) on Saturday May 14, 2005 @06:17PM (#12531815)
    Currently Moz or Thund. cannot manage contacts anywhere near like OLK.
    -You can't print 20 to a page
    -you don't have the same number of fields.
    -phone numbers to auto re-format themselves when you type them in.
    If this was fixed, I would jump in a heart beat.
    • I don't want either of them to do contacts management, I want a contacts manager program instead.

      I agree that those features are great -- and its one of the few reasons I've ever liked Outlook (contact management), but incorporating those features into Thunderbird or Sunbird makes no sense.

      That should be the job of a dedicated piece of software and it should have nice public interfaces for software like Thunderbird, Sunbird and anything else needing to know about people to interface with.
      • I guess you like work.
        I can see you now setting up a meeting:
        -Ok I got everybody, Send
        -D'oh! I used john's old email. The updated one is in the contact manager Prog!
        -Gotta sync them up aging...

        Granted the opposite would probably happen more often but I think I made my point.
        Maybe it could be an extension but I don't see how given the amount of integration required to make things work

        • You made no point whatsoever.

          What's the difference between clicking the "Contacts" icon in Outlook or launching a Contacts application?

          None, well, its in a new window (how I'd prefer my contacts).

          What's the difference if the secondary contacts program has CORBA support and is accessible from within my mail software (for adding new names, looking up names), etc.? None.

          I'm a programmer; I think like one.

          I've used E-mail since 1989 and have tens of thousands of direct contacts. It matters to me.
  • I've been looking for something that can properly replace Lotus and Outlook. Lotus is owned by IBM, and while Domino runs on Linux, Lotus the client does not. This is one of the only two reasons we're not running Linux throughout our enterprise.

    If Lotus wont deliver, maybe Sunbird+Thunderbird will. Another issue are the custom apps of Domino, I guess we'll just have to do without them. I wonder how well a Sunbird+Thunderbird combination will work as clients to Domino 7 running on a Linux machine.
  • Another company like IBM that supports just enough OSS to give them credibility with the OSS lobby while continuing to reap enormous profits from their proprietary products.

    I'm not an OSS fan, but if you believe that OSS is the future, why delay the transition by propping up the old guard because they throw you a few crumbs?
  • Oracle Calendar really is a nice application, both the server side and client side components. They bought it from Steltor a few years back and have put a lot of effort behind it.

    I'm now very interested to see what they're going to come out with. This could make huge inroads in the small business community, where sadly Exchange (thanks to Windows Small Business Server 2003) has been gaining ground..
  • From my weblog []

    Oracle's current work on Mozilla Lightning (Thunderbird Mail + Sunbird Calendar ++) should be interesting. Thunderbird is already a fairly decent mail client. Its main flaws from a large company perspective are its lack of calendaring and administration tools (pushing updates, profiles etc). If Oracle can fix these flaws and tie it to the Oracle database backend they should have a product they can sell.

    What Oracle will need to do:

    1) Fix the flaws and make it "good enough" for most business

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