Trio of e-mail vendors upgrade Exchange alternatives

Web clients, calendars and management tools are part of server releases

E-mail vendors Gordano, Kerio, and PostPath have all introduced upgrades to their e-mail platforms billed as alternatives to Microsoft Exchange.

E-mail vendors Gordano, Kerio, and PostPath have all introduced upgrades to their e-mail platforms billed as alternatives to Microsoft Exchange.

Gordano recently released version 15 of its Messaging Suite which features a new AJAX-based WebMail client that mimics a desktop application.

"It has given us much more performance with browser-based mail and made it much more scalable," says John Stanners, managing director of Gordano.

The client, which works with Firefox and Internet Explorer, features shared calendars, folders, tasks and notes. It also interoperates with Outlook calendars, so users can pick their client of choice.

The calendar features include "Quick Add" so users can click on a calendar time to start an entry. The calendar supports dynamic resizing and moving of calendar events via drag and drop. There is also support for the iCal standard and the Mozilla calendar client.

Gordano WebMail also has a new mashup framework called Gizmos, which are based on GreaseMonkey scripts. Gordano will ship approximately 10 Gizmos with the server, including a translator, dictionary, zip code lookup linked to Google Maps and an interface to Skype.

On the management side, the server, which runs on Windows, Linux, Solaris and AIX, lets administrators change "context" in essence inheriting a user's session in order to make needed changes.

The look of the client can be customized using Cascading Style Sheets.

Kerio, which released its MailServer 6.5 Tuesday, has added a cross-platform CalDAV server, to support calendar interoperability, and enhanced its Outlook Connector.

Company officials say the server can act as a bridge to link calendars in programs such as Microsoft Outlook and Entourage, Apple iCal or Windows Mobile and Palm Treo smartphones.

The Outlook Connector, which supports Outlook XP, 2003 and 2007, features a new offline data store to ensure mobile users have access to Outlooks offline features. The new data store also enhances local search features.

MailServer 6.5 runs on Windows (including certification to run on Vista), Red Hat Linux, SUSE Linux, Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger and Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard.

"We do not require customers to use the server version of the Windows OS," says Dusan Vitek, vice president of worldwide marketing for Kerio.

PostPath last week released version 3.1 of its Linux-based PostPath Email Server, with a focus on small and midsize business.mobile support around BlackBerry, Active Sync, Windows Mobile and IMAP (for iPhone support).

The company has added PostPath Administrator, a set of GUI-based management tools for the Exchange clone that users can deploy in place of Microsoft's management tools. In addition, PostPath added more options for

"We will announce VoIP upport in a month or two," says Ducan Greatwood, CEO of PostPath. "We are not trying to build our own VoIP platform, but we are working with some vendors on a higher degree of integration.

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