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GroupWise Gadgets and iChain

Novell Cool Solutions: Trench
By Jimmie Hay

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Posted: 22 Jan 2002

Version: iChain 2.0

Architecture Overview

This article describes the steps required to configure the GroupWise mail and calendar gadgets provided with Novell Portal Services to securely access GroupWise resources protected by a Novell iChain appliance.

Initially it is helpful to understand a typical network architecture used to support such a requirement. This is illustrated in the diagram below.

In this example the Novell eDirectory, Novell Portal Services (NPS) and GroupWise Web Access are secured behind the iChain appliance. The iChain appliance has Accelerators defined for the NPS server web server and the GroupWise Web Access server. Both these Accelerators are SSLized using the iChain SSLizer.

Gadget Configuration

The GroupWise Mail and Calendar gadgets contain an identical set of configuration parameters. These are discussed below, using the Mail gadget as an example.

Configuring the Web Access server address

The following screen shot shows the gadget configuration screen for the GroupWise Mail gadget.

To proceed from this point it is assumed that the GroupWise templates have been installed on the Web Access server as described in the product documentation.

The Setting Name "IP or DNS address of GroupWise Web Access Server" (highlighted in red) must be configured with the address of the GroupWise Web Access server.

Note. This address is used by the NPS server to locate the Web Access server. In the architecture example above, this will be an internal IP or DNS address visible to the NPS server. Either enter the private IP or DNS address.

If you wish to use the same DNS name both internally and externally and the server has its DNS Resolver configured to refer to the public DNS, then consider adding an entry to the NPS servers HOSTS file to resolve your chosen DNS address to the internal IP address of the Web Access server.

The key point, however, is that the NPS server must be able to resolve this setting to the IP address of the Web Access server.

This address is used by the gadget to retrieve the configured number of mail items for the authenticated user ("5", in this example) and display them in the browser.

Configuring the address of the iChain appliance

To configure the address of the iChain appliance it is necessary to select the "Show All Settings" button. The "Advanced Configuration" options provide the "IP or DNS address of the ICS server" setting, shown below.

The address to be supplied for this parameter is used by the browser on the Internet to contact the GroupWise Web Access server when the user opens a mail item from the gadget.

To provide secure communications to the Web Access server, via the iChain appliance, the name of the Web Access Accelerator configured in iChain should be provided.

This will ensure all traffic between the browser and the Web Access server passes through the iChain appliance and is SSLized.

Confirming the configuration

Using the browser, it is possible to confirm that the communication is secured. Authenticate to your portal and select the Object Scheme that contains the GroupWise Mail or Calendar gadget. To perform this test it is necessary to have at least one mail item displayed.

Select "View", "Source" from the browsers menu bar. Using Notepad, search for any existence of the string "http". There should be no references found if the configuration is correct. A search for "https" should return two references for "https" per mail item.

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