Groupwise and Outlook 2003

Posted on 2006-03-20
Last Modified: 2013-11-12
Howdy from Grady Hospital in Atlanta, Georgia.
In an earlier question about how to use Outlook 2003 with Groupwise there was a lot of chatter about how great GroupWise is and how evil MS is, but the question was never directly answered.

How do you make GroupWise 6.5 work with Outlook 2003 as its client? The GroupWise 6.5 client is not very good (at least compared to the Outlook product).

My question is specifically and exclusively about Outlook 2003 as a mail and groupware client into GroupWise 6.5.

I will not be upgrading to GW7. While there may be some advantage to the "security" of GW that advantage comes more from its rarity than its inherant security. The expertise is expensive and rare, the Blackberry integration is sickly and the third party groupware application set is thin.

Question by:graysonwolfe
    LVL 35

    Expert Comment

    Not very good how, exactly?  Maybe there's just a learning curve issue...  The feature set of Outlook 2003 is not that far from the GroupWise 6.5 client's.  If you want similar look-and-feel to Outlook 2003, you'd have to upgrade to GW7, which has similar color scheme and fischer-price toys to Outlook 2003 - of course, then, you could use the Outlook Connector for GW7 and have almost full Outlook functionality.

    Anyway, I don't think there ever was an Outlook Connector for GroupWise 6.5.  They kinda phased it out for a while there, between 5.5 and 7.  The method for using Outlook with GW6.5 was to use it as a POP or IMAP client.  Makes it tough to use any calendaring or other Groupware features.

    I don't understand how you can think that GroupWise's security advantage is that it's not as prevalent as Exchange/Outlook.  It's the usual "bla-bla" FUD crapola line that 'softies spout whenever a competing product is shown to be more secure than the corresponding M$ product.  There are fundamental technological reasons for GroupWise's inherently superior security, not the least of which is "it's not Outlook," meaning it doesn't have the basic security flaws that Microsoft has neglected to fix or even acknowledge until very recently.   GroupWise has tens of millions of seats worldwide.  It's not a "rarity."

    Author Comment

    I am not a technical expert, nor do I claim to be. Hence my annoyingly blunt question.

    I am an executive in the IT group who prefers the Outlook interface and the ease of integration with my other tools. Little things like that popup that asks if it is ok to spell check each message when you hit send rather than checking as you type - and then asking if you really want to send - Other little things like the query after you click reply make me crazy. Regardless of where you stand on the Microsoft issue - one must admit they are absoulute geniuses at creating interfaces. The outlook interface is better than the same generation GroupWise interface. I will go to the wall arguing that - though it is not really the point of this request for support.

    I am not a technical user, and the speed bumps in the client are really all I will ever see of the product (aside from the downtime reports and support invoices that come across my desk). I stand by my statements about rarity based on available information regarding market share. There is no way you can debate that a college educated and certified Novell Groupwise expert is harder to find and more expensive than the same MS Exchange expert. As for the name calling - I get that from the staff here. My interest in these products is not religious in any way - they are tools. The goal is to implement the most effective set of functionality for the most attractive price. Novells acquisition, marketing and product placement blunders have impared its ability to compete effectively when someone like me looks at the 5 year Cost to Own (CTO) and factors in support, hardware, licensing and staffing. I am interested in that "10s of millions number" though. Does that number include active mailboxes or "tradeshow servers"? Tradeshow servers typically have some outrageous number of minimally active accounts running on big iron in the background. IBM is famous for that with Notes. There is not much GroupWise in Atlanta and that is where crunch these numbers. We are a huge Groupwise implementation here with ~10000 seats. We cannot upgrade due to budget restrictions, but I am working on a grant proposal to the Gates Foundation for Healthcare...
    LVL 35

    Accepted Solution

    Yah, Novell used to do the email for that big expo that used to be in Vegas every year - Comdex?  That's not what I'm talking about.

    Your installation is fair-to-middlin' for GroupWise - shows some of the scalability of GW vs Exchange.  There are 20K-seat companies out there, and bigger.  There are government entities, school systems, manufacturers, distribution companies, law firms and as you know, healthcare providers that use GroupWise.  Big ones, like you.

    You don't see a lot of seats sold every year to the Fortune-500, because they don't buy every year - sorta like you don't buy every year.   Of course, if you hitch yourself to the Software Assurance Microsoft gravy-train, you WILL be paying every year...

    Most of the really huge installations are GroupWise, Notes or Sendmail/Postfix/other OSS.  Most of the smaller installations are Exchange/Outlook.  The big ones generally aren't Exchange/Outlook for good reason.  

    TCO?  You buy a mailbox license for each active mailbox with GroupWise.  That's all.  There's also a web/wireless license that's a fraction of the full client/server license.  Clustering is built-in.  Multiple server instances is built-in.  No artificial message-store size limits.   To do anything like that with Exchange, you need Enterprise edition, along with Windows Server 2003 Enterprise on the back-end, and a license for each server.  GroupWise is one of the easiest to manage - if it takes you more than a couple of dedicated GroupWise admins for your 10,000-mailbox setup, you've got it set up wrong.  Some GroupWise customers with 20,000 or more users have a need for only one.  Your GroupWise admins may cost you more, but you'd need twice as many Exchange admins to support half the users.  GroupWise is platform-agnostic.  It runs on NetWare, Windows Server or Linux on the back-end, and has native clients for Windows, Linux/unix and Mac.  Exchange/outlook only runs on Windows Server/Workstation, and the Mac "client" is a red-haired stepchild.  It took Novell (with their Evolution client) to come up with a decent Linux client for Exchange...

    What does downtime cost?  If you 2-node cluster your GroupWise servers (which is a free feature of NetWare/OES) you can get the elusive  five-nines availability. To do the same with Windows, you pay the premium price for cluster-enabling Exchange.  What does it cost you to meet/maintain HIPAA requirements?  GroupWise is closer out-of-the-box to meeting HIPAA, and doesn't take much to get it there.

    Since you like talkin' ROI and TCO, check this out:  
    (Sure, they're a UK healthcare provider, but they're at least colleagues of yours in a sense...)
    And this:

    And no, I don't work for Novell, nor do I sell Novell products.  I'm a satisfied customer that's managed both GroupWise and Exchange.
    LVL 19

    Assisted Solution

    The sum total of your question is this:
    "How do you make GroupWise 6.5 work with Outlook 2003 as its client?"

    Enable POP3 or IMAP on the GroupWise server.
    Configure Outlook to connect via POP3 or IMAP.
    Aside from that, you could also choose to back-rev your Outlook version to XP.

    >My question is specifically and exclusively about Outlook 2003
    >as a mail and groupware client into GroupWise 6.5.

    Actually, your question is partly about Outlook, and partly about coming in with a confrontational attitude, which is rarely a good way to open a question on an all-volunteer support forum like EE.

    Suppose I walked into your hospital and demanded free medical advice, while simultaneously complaining about how ugly your facilities were, and how much better the ones down the street are. Not an auspicious beginning, really.

    >I will not be upgrading to GW7.
    Sorry to hear that.
    Unfortunately, executives make critical infrastructure decisions all the time based on personal preference in a specific user interface, whether or not the product demo interferes with their tee time, or which female sales rep has the shortest skirt. Throw some Gartner research references around, wave around last month's issue CIO Monthly, and voila!

    >While there may be some advantage to the "security" of GW that
    >advantage comes more from its rarity than its inherant security.

    You've been listening to the sales rep in the short skirt again...
    Even if this were true, it would still be an advantage, not a disadvantage. And since it's simply not true at all, ...
    ...but you've already made up your mind, so no point in mentioning specifics.

    >The expertise is expensive and rare
    Wow, can I get you to tell my boss that?

    > the Blackberry integration is sickly
    All Blackberry integration is sickly. Blackberries are evil anyway, no medical facility should encourage that sort of addiction... ;)

    >and the third party groupware application set is thin.
    Anorexic is more like it... OK, this is a legit beef.
    One hopes that sort of thing will be changing with the more open XML-based interface in 7.  

    >Little things like that popup that asks if it is ok to spell
    >check each message when you hit send
    You can turn that off you know...

    >rather than checking as you type and then asking if you really want to send
    Semi-legit. This sequence has a couple of unnecessary mouse clicks, but really, it's a cup holder. Outlook has plenty of dumbass extra clickety clicks too, just in different places.

    >Other little things like the query after you click reply make me
    You're supposed to click the drop-down next to reply, and choose which type you want. It's basically a single click, with a little drag. Much faster and easier than moving to dialogs.

    >Regardless of where you stand on the Microsoft issue - one must admit
    >they are absoulute geniuses at creating interfaces.

    It's certainly true that they create tons and tons of user interfaces.

    >The outlook interface is better than the same generation GroupWise
    >interface. I will go to the wall arguing that...
    Hey, no need for that. Nobody's throwing any punches. You like it better, I think it sucks. Both opinions, we've all got one.

    Now let's talk about driving a car with a history of side-impact fatalities and rollovers, just because you like the cup holders...

    >- though it is not really the point of this request for support.
    It came across more like a demand than a request.

    graysonwolfe, you aren't by any chance into horseback riding are you?


    Author Comment

    Bill- Thanks for your good natured and genuinely funny response. I am meeting with the GW admin today to discuss POP services on our GW servers.

    Im sorry for being pushy and rude. I have a high level of e-mail frustration and it really isn't your problem. It came out here and it shouldn't have.

    I was once into horseback riding - long ago- but it ended badly for me and tragically for a friend. The stories are still on the net if you google my name.

    LVL 35

    Expert Comment

    Um, graysonwolfe... I gave you a link to the GroupWise 6.5 documentation that explains how to configure GroupWise for POP or IMAP access for using Outlook as a client, in my first Comment.  

    Regardless of how good-natured and genuinely funny billmercer may be, that doesn't make it right, by Experts-Exchange rules, to ignore my comment  and accept a later comment as your Answer.  I wouldn't object to a split, but what you did, IMHO, is just wrong.

    If you'd like to reconsider your choice, I won't have to whine and complain to the Moderators about you ;).  Just post a (free) question in Community Support with a link to this Question asking for it to be reopened.

    If you're wondering how you're supposed to handle questions and accepting answers, the Helps are a great guide and are based on the Member Agreement.
    and under "the big mistakes" category:
    LVL 5

    Assisted Solution

    Just thought i'd pipe in here...

    You CAN run outlook 2003 client with Groupwise 6.5... install the Groupwise client on a PC that has the full office suite installed.... and fire up Outlook.   It actually works.   It is a little bit buggy, and definitely do NOT try it over a VPN connection (ie anything other than a solid LAN).. but it does work.

    Groupwise 7 has finally shipped with a more robust and feature enriched Outlook Connector.. but you said you're not upgrading, so that's no good.. but just thought i'd mention.

    LVL 19

    Expert Comment

    Apologies if I stirred painful memories, Graysonwolfe.

    The reason I asked that question is because I had actually read about that incident just recently, because it was in the same issue of a magazine as an article I was reading about an Emory professor and a controversy over his take on Hinduism. Just one of those weird coincidences.

    LVL 35

    Expert Comment

    graysonwolfe - here's another link to a document you might want to check out.  It's a Butler Group technology review of GroupWise 7 from October of last year, and in that they mention GroupWise having an installed base of over 35 million users.   Like I said, tens of millions.
    LVL 35

    Expert Comment

    ... and that's just GroupWise.  That doesn't include NetMail or OpenExchange.

    Author Comment

    Hello Again,
    I havent been able to get that "whole office solutiuon" to work. When the tech installed O2K3 on my notebook he did install the whole suite - all set to run on my PC and no luck. It opens the mail just fine, but can't send messages or calendar items.
     The final solution - which has worked - was to bully and cajole the support team into enabling SMTP services works fairly well. My admin is rebuilding my calendar - it didn't survive.

    I did post a request asking for the ticket to be reopened so that I can split the points but there has been no action on that front.

    LVL 35

    Expert Comment

    Remember, you'll be able to use Outlook for email only.  Your calendar will be yours and yours alone, not synched with your GroupWise calendar, so if anyone wants to make an appointment with you, busy search will be useless to them unless you manually sync your calendar to GroupWise, which means you'll have to use the hated GroupWise client anyway... ;)

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