Mobile computing. The term has almost become redundant in today's business world. With few exceptions, most users have mobile computing needs for several critical parts of their job. Whether they need to stay on top of their e-mail while on the road, capture tasks during the wait at the dentist's office, or update contact information in their cell phone at an on-site meeting, almost all knowledge workers are on the move.
For the past year, Novell GroupWise users have been aided by two key solutions that make mobility easier. Novell GroupWise Mobile Server, powered by Intellisync, has helped thousands of users sync their e-mail, appointments, tasks and contacts between GroupWise and several types of wireless devices. And the BlackBerry Enterprise Server for Novell GroupWise has allowed organizations to extend the benefits of GroupWise to BlackBerry users. Together, these solutions help GroupWise users stay productive on the go anywhere, anytime and on virtually any device.
Novell is demonstrating its commitment to workgroup productivity in general, and the GroupWise collaboration product in particular through its development investments in GroupWise Mobile Server and its strong partnership with Research In Motion (RIM). Both GroupWise Mobile Server and the BlackBerry Enterprise Server for Novell GroupWise have recently been enhanced with new features (for end users and administrators) and more of the stellar security you've come to expect from Novell and its partners. Read on for an update on some of the new functionality these popular solutions provide.
> Novell GroupWise Mobile Server
Novell GroupWise Mobile Server is being updated to provide support for more devices, more languages and more features—all while making it even more reliable. This is the most extensively tested release ever, with thousands of trial cases during months of beta testing. The result is improved reliability and management with better server monitoring tools and server scalability. The new version will be available around the BrainShare 2007 time frame, and will be free of charge to GroupWise users with upgrade protection or maintenance contracts.
Symbian OS Support
Novell GroupWise Mobile Server already offers support for hundreds of devices, including versions of Palm Treos, HP Pocket PCs and smartphones from Motorola and others. The new release supports all those devices, as well as the latest models from Nokia, Palm and more—including smartphones running the latest version of Symbian OS.
Symbian is a company owned by Ericsson, Nokia, Panasonic, Samsung, Siemens and Sony Ericsson and is the largest provider of smartphone software in the world. In fact, according to Gartner principal research analyst Todd Kort, quoted in a recent piece by the wireless news website Unstrung, Symbian accounted for about 71 percent of worldwide smartphone shipments in the second quarter of 2006.
GroupWise Mobile Server has support for the latest versions of all major mobile device operating environments in the world: Windows Mobile 5, Palm OS, Symbian OS, Pocket PC, SyncML and BREW. No matter what device your users prefer, you can connect it to GroupWise with GroupWise Mobile Server. (See Figure 1.)
Improved Server Monitoring Tools
The new GroupWise Mobile Server 2, powered by Intellisync, also delivers better server monitoring tools. It includes server health monitoring that provides constant analysis of user accounts and data. And it will send you an alert if irregularities are discovered so user interruption is minimal or nonexistent. (See Figure 2.)
It also includes a server scalability analysis tool to help you meet current usage needs without over-purchasing equipment and help you plan for future growth. And it includes an automated client-push utility to help you distribute the software reliably. This helps you ensure proper installation across the organization without having to touch every device.
New Language Support
Since your mobile users may reside across the globe, it makes sense to have a mobility solution that speaks their language. The new GroupWise Mobile Server includes support for many new languages so you don't have to worry about excluding anyone. All of the end-user features of this solution are localized for the following languages:
- Spanish, Spain
- Spanish, Latin America
- Brazilian Portuguese
- Simplified and Traditional Chinese
And even more languages will be incorporated shortly, including Swedish, Dutch and Arabic.
Enhanced Client Support
Some of the best features of the new GroupWise Mobile Server are simple but powerful things you may not even notice at first. Nokia has worked with Novell to make significant improvements to the client interface to make it more intuitive and seamless with GroupWise. In fact, the solution now provides mobile device users with a more comparable experience to the desktop client or Web interface they're familiar with.
The Nokia client for all mobile devices has been updated with a new, cleaner look and feel consisting of a set of icons for mail, calendar, contacts, system directory lookups, notes and settings. The new client also supports keyboard shortcuts, so you can get quickly to your in-box, or any other function you need frequently. On Windows Mobile 5 and Symbian systems, there's a new Call Sender feature in the mail function, if you want to discuss the e-mail you just read. There's also a new Audible Notification feature for configuring e-mails to make a different sound than text messages. In addition, Global Address Lookup is available from the Directory icon, and has been added to Symbian and Palm systems and improved on Windows Mobile 5.
One small change that will make a big difference to many users is that with GroupWise Mobile Server 2, on all mobile device clients, all appointments will be synced to the mobile device without having to accept them first in GroupWise. If you've been unplugged from GroupWise after a long flight or don't have your laptop with you, you can be sure that you know what appointments are lined up for you by just looking at the calendar on your mobile device.
Novell and Nokia also worked together to support syncing notes, in addition to mail, folders, contacts, tasks and appointments. Now, when you add a note to your mobile device, it's synced to a Notes folder in GroupWise.
Strong Security Made Even Better
The already-strong security of GroupWise Mobile Server is also enhanced with this new release. To begin with, the e-mail store on the device is encrypted. And users have the ability to set a password lock to protect messages as well as a timed lock that activates itself after a certain period has passed. With these new features, you don't have to worry about sensitive data becoming compromised just because someone accidentally left a device in a cab.
With other solutions, security is more of an afterthought. Microsoft's Exchange Direct Push Technology, for example, requires you to open ports on the inside firewall. Also, Exchange has very limited device management, which creates security risks and requires increased IT resources.
The Secure Mobile Gateway, included with GroupWise Mobile Server, is a module that makes it unnecessary to open ports on the inside firewall; it handles the sync traffic with mobile devices outside the company network using ports 80 or 443, and communicates securely with the GroupWise Mobile Server over a single port that can be assigned by the administrator. What's more, with GroupWise Mobile Server's device-management capabilities, you can extend security rules across all device types. And it provides greater role-based or rule-based administrative capabilities, ensuring security for all devices with minimal effort.
You should know that Microsoft's solution only works with Exchange 2003 SP2 with the Messaging and Security Feature Pack. It's not backwards compatible to any other Exchange or device versions. And if you install Exchange Direct Push Technology, you are required to purchase the full Microsoft architecture of Active Directory and IIS servers—with no guarantee of future backwards compatibility.
When dealing with Microsoft products, security is always a concern, and the same is true for their mobile solutions. For example, Outlook virus vulnerabilities extend to mobile devices. Constant patches for applications and device ROM are necessary to ensure compatibility with devices you have already configured and secured against current and future threats.
GroupWise Mobile Server supports all major groupware applications—including previous versions of Exchange that even Microsoft ignores. And while Microsoft supports only a limited number of devices running a couple of operating systems, GroupWise Mobile Server features an open architecture that supports mixed platforms and virtually any existing device. Why? Because Novell understands and addresses the real-world environment in which users and administrators live.
How You Get It
The new GroupWise Mobile Server will be available in the coming weeks to GroupWise customers with maintenance or upgrade protection, and it works with GroupWise 7 Service Pack 2 Post Office Agents. For eligible customers, the process will consist of the following steps:
- Upgrade your Post Office Agents that work with GroupWise Mobile Server to GroupWise 7 SP2, which is available on http://download.novell.com.
- Download GroupWise Mobile Server from http://download.novell.com.
- Get a license to run GMS from the Novell Customer Center.
- Follow the instructions that come with the download for server installation.
If you need to purchase GroupWise maintenance or upgrade protection, contact your Novell sales representative or channel partner. With GroupWise Mobile Server, you can support hundreds of devices on multiple operating systems for an unlimited number of users—all no cost beyond GroupWise maintenance or upgrade protection.
> BlackBerry Enterprise Server for Novell GroupWise
Novell GroupWise Mobile Server isn't the only mobility solution to get an upgrade. New features have also been added to the BlackBerry Enterprise Server version 4.1 for Novell GroupWise. Since its release in early 2006, this product has gained substantial market adoption. Customers love the product's rich feature set, including tight integration with GroupWise Instant Messenger. And the newly released BlackBerry Enterprise Server 4.1 SP3 for Novell GroupWise provides integration with Novell GroupWise 7.0 SP1 and above. Scalability and performance have been improved through integration with the GroupWise SOAP interface, which also creates a better foundation for increased reliability, performance and security. (For more information on the GroupWise SOAP interface, see Putting SOAP to Good Use.)
Improved Security and Reliability
Security is strong with the BlackBerry Enterprise Server for Novell GroupWise. Because the server is set up behind the firewall, your data is protected on this system just as well as any other server on your network. And because it interfaces directly with Novell GroupWise, there's no need to provide access via proxies or a Web console. The connection through the firewall is outbound, not inbound, providing additional security. The solution also provides secure, two-way synchronization of your e-mail, instant messages, appointments, contacts, memos, meeting requests and tasks. End-to-end AES encryption ensures that information is transmitted securely.
There are also more than 200 "IT Policies" that can be sent to the device over-the-air that allow you to control the behavior of the device for individual users or groups of users. If a device is ever lost or stolen, you can wirelessly lock it or even remotely wipe the data.
Reliability is an important factor in any solution, and the BlackBerry Enterprise Server for Novell GroupWise is as good as they come. And since the server communicates directly with GroupWise, no additional third-party integration is required. In fact, when you install this solution in your existing environment, there's no disruption or downtime.
Many of the features in the new BlackBerry Enterprise Server for Novell GroupWise represent administrative enhancements. The BlackBerry Manager is the control center for the entire BlackBerry domain. And management tasks performed with this tool can now be separated by roles, users or groups. This helps reduce security and operational risks from unauthorized administrators. (See Figure 3.)
The BlackBerry Enterprise Server for Novell GroupWise also lets you manage your company's BlackBerry devices remotely. You can enable and disable features for users, enforce software upgrades and have applications installed over-the-air. And you can control, allow, disallow or even require applications on the user's device.
If you ever need to look at the SMS, PIN-to-PIN, or call logs on a device, this solution provides auditing capabilities. And you can always see the settings or attributes of a device. If a user tries to change the settings you have defined, you can override them.
You can also track statistics on the device, such as which third-party applications are loaded and which IT policies have been applied. You can view inventory information, such as model numbers, serial numbers, software versions, etc.
RIM offers Technical Support Services at a variety of levels according to the customer's requirements. These services offer a direct line to BlackBerry technical support experts for any hardware- or software-related issues, and they provide you with free software upgrades throughout your subscription.
Mobile users often need more than just remote access to files and e-mail. They also need access to company applications. Your sales force, for example, may need mobile access to the company's CRM application or inventory database. With the BlackBerry Enterprise Server for Novell GroupWise, you have several options.
In addition to browser-based solutions that let you extend existing Web-based applications through the BlackBerry Browser, and custom Java client/server solutions developed using BlackBerry JDE, RIM also offers BlackBerry MDS Studio. This visual application design and assembly tool lets developers create rich-client applications for Java-based BlackBerry devices. It enables the rich end-user experience of a Java client/server solution, but with the development simplicity of a browser-based solution. Finally, there are many third-party solutions available so mobile users not only have access to the data back home, but the applications and tools they need, as well.
Trying out the BlackBerry Enterprise Server for Novell GroupWise
You can try out the BlackBerry Enterprise Server for Novell GroupWise with RIM's Quick Start Edition Offer. This offer allows you to download a full-functioning version of the BlackBerry Enterprise Server for free. It also allows for five free client access licenses. (If you have more users to support, you can purchase up to 10 additional client access licenses with this offer.) And to make sure everything is set up properly and running smoothly, you'll receive two months of free access to RIM's Technical Support Services where available.
"Our hospital personnel and executive team can't say enough about the value of being able to manage their GroupWise workload on BlackBerry devices. They check their e-mail to see if there are any fires to put out while they're away from their desks. Having timely e-mail and an accurate calendar at your disposal is priceless."
The world is becoming increasingly mobile, and we know how important it is to support your users on the myriad of devices they're using. People are picky about their smartphones or PDAs. They have opinions about which devices they prefer, and they don't like to change options often. In fact, your mobile users probably have more influence in the selection of their personal devices than any other IT purchase in the organization.
That's why Novell is committed to delivering the best support and the greatest degree of choice for mobile users. And because many of these mobile users are company executives, keep them happy and they'll be your advocate for a long time to come.
When users have access to the communication, data, contacts and schedules they need no matter where they are, it can transform the way they work. Being more connected means time is used more effectively, users are more responsive and productivity is improved. That's why it's so important to have a solution that works seamlessly with the devices your users prefer.
Unparalleled device support. Seamless integration. Choice. With GroupWise Mobile Server and Blackberry Enterprise Server for Novell GroupWise, you get mobility without compromise.