As plans, decisions, and schedules are finalized regarding Windermere – there are several things to share and socialize in order to help you and your organization move forward with Novell and GroupWise.
Windermere is the next major release for GroupWise. It is expected to release in 2013. The focus is on replacing ConsoleOne with a new web administration console, expanding directory support to include Active Directory, and updating the look of the Windows Client. There are also several strategic and forward looking decisions to consider. Through a series of blog posts or related cool solutions articles, these topics will be introduced and socialized. Please review and respond so that considerations are included and potential impact and trade-offs are debated.
Software Distribution Directory
The first discussion point has already been published with several comments, private emails and opinions. Please see this related blog post and cool solutions article for more details. The changes discussed in this engineering article are now implemented and part of Windermere. Your feedback was valuable in confirming the choices and improving the final solution.
64-bit ONLY Agents
Engineering initially began work on transitioning the GroupWise agents (POA, MTA and GWIA) to 64-bit during the GroupWise 2012 development phase. QA and validation schedules, along with some customer requests, forced us to ship 32-bit agents again in GroupWise 2012. Product Management, along with a chorus of customers, partners and market realities are confirming that delivering 64-bit agents is past due. The debate of whether to continue to offer 32-bit agents has been vigorously argued and the decision is to ONLY provide 64-bit agents when Windermere ultimately ships. 64-bit machines/hardware have been available for a decade and 32-bit architectures were discontinued by manufactures in January of 2007. Consciously controlling the ‘number’ of platforms that need to be validated allows engineering to maintain a realistic release schedule.
While most organizations have probably renewed their hardware over the years, they may not have transitioned to a 64-bit operating system. GroupWise 8 and GroupWise 2012, while 32-bit applications, are supported today on 64-bit platforms. Upgrading your servers to 64-bit today will simplify the move to Windermere later.
The Windows Client will continue to be 32-bit in Windermere. However, other related utilities will be 64-bit. This includes DBCopy and GWCheck (server). The desktop/client version of GWCheck will continue as a 32-bit application. Any utility that is based on the core GroupWise engine and run on a server will follow in lock step with the agents.
English Only Downloads
We also plan to simplify our build, install, delivery and validation processes by eliminating the ‘english only’ version of our downloads. Images and downloads will only be available in the multi-language variety. Windows multi and Linux multi.
Eventually, we will provide a core language image with language packs. However, that work is not planned for Windermere.
Right to Left (RTL) Languages
Support for the Arabic/Hebrew user interface clients is also changing. We do not plan to support these languages in Windermere. We do continue to evaluate languages, dictionaries and geographic markets. Where support or customers are requesting languages, we try to accommodate those that meet business justification. For example, with GroupWise 2012 SP1, the WebAccess Client language support was expanded to Turkish and Bulgarian.
Administration for Document Management Properties
As the Document Management strategy continues to evolve; product direction has been and will continue to be to recommend Novell Vibe for future DMS needs. Novell Vibe 3.3, released in May, expands DMS capabilities with the Microsoft Office Add-in,the Vibe Desktop, and through the Vibe integrations with the GroupWise Windows client.
In the transition from ConsoleOne to the Web Administration console, the ability for an administrator to modify the schema for custom properties on a DMS document was not carried forward. This will not be supported in Windermere. We also recommend that customers explore the capabilities and functionality that Novell Filr will provides for file sharing and collaboration.
Part Two – coming soon!
This concludes part one. In part two of this topic, platform support will be discussed. While platform support is always an ongoing topic and can change as new platforms are released by Novell, SUSE, Microsoft and Apple, we will try to share with you the plans and initial targets for servers, desktops, browsers, and tablets.
If you have feedback, want to voice your support, or want to vote against the decisions listed above, please do so in the comments area for all to see. We only ask that you are professional and courteous. :)
GroupWise: Windermere Changes Series: