by March 10, 2007 0 comments

With PCQLinux 2007 Collaboration you get an up and running installation of
Zimbra -a cool messaging and calendaring
solution. Zimbra starts with the appliance startup and adapting it to your
domain and network. With a little configuration, it will provide a full-fledged
messaging and collaboration solution, running on your network.

In this article we will quickly go through setting up e-mailing and
calendaring functions in Zimbra. We assume that your Internet E-mail server is
residing on an Internet server and PCQLinux collaboration appliance, sitting on
your network, will relay and fetch mails from your Internet mail server. Boot up
the appliance and setup its networking as explained in the Virtualization

Configuring e-mail
Once the appliance has booted, access the Zimbra’s admin interface by keying in
the URL Admin in the Web browser (IE or Firefox).
Substitute with the IP address you assigned to the appliance. The
username and password to login to the admin interface are admin and pass@word
respectively. Once logged in, click on Domains and then click on New (on the top
left corner of the right pane). For the domain name, type in your e-mail domain,
for example, Keep clicking on the Next button, accepting the
defaults and finally click on the Finish button.

You can search through
your e-mails, contacts and calendars using a plethora of conditions

Next, click on Global Settings and then click on the MTA tab. For ‘Relay MTA
for external delivery’ type in the name of your Internet mail server, for
example, mail. Click on Save (at the top left corner). Next
click on Accounts. Click on New and follow the wizard to create e-mail accounts
for users. Make sure you select your e-mail domain from the dropdown as opposed
to localhost.localdomain-which is selected by default. Setting up Zimbra for
basic e-mailing has been explained in detail in the article ‘Web Mail with
Zimbra.’ You can read this article online at

One of the features in the latest version of Zimbra bundled with the
appliance is that instead of setting up fetchmail, as explained in the earlier
article, users can configure to POP e-mails from other mail servers which can
include your Internet mail server. That is, after setting up e-mail accounts,
you can ask users to setup POP E-mails from the Internet mail server. It’s easy
and can be achieved as follows. Users can login to their Web mail client using
the URL with their e-mail as the username and the password
which was specified during the creation of the e-mail account.
A user can then click on Options>POP Accounts>Add. The settings required here
can be copied from your existing e-mail client (like Outlook). Once done,
clicking on the Get Mail button on the top will POP the e-mails from the
Internet mail server.

When e-mails carry the
date for meetings, and calendars store the meetings, shouldn’t both get
integrated ?

Shared Calendar: A simple use case
Suppose there are two people- Shekhar Govindarajan and Sanjay Majumder involved
in a project named ABC. The end customer is Binesh Kutty whose e-mail address is Shekhar co-ordinates all meetings with the end customer while
Sanjay is the person responsible for executing the project. Sanjay’s e-mail
account has already been created in Zimbra by the administrator. Next, Shekhar
needs to schedule a meeting for project discussion using Zimbra’s Calendar.
Shekhar logs in to the Web mail client and first adds Binesh as his contact. To
add a contact, one can click on New>Contact and fill in the name and e-mail (Binesh
and in this case).

Next Shekhar will create a new shared calendar (amongst Shekhar, Sanjay and
Binesh) called Project ABC. For this, while you are still logged into the Web
mail client, one can click on the Calendar tab and the click on New>Calendar.
When prompted the name of the calendar (Project ABC in our case) should be

This will show the calendar on the left pane. To share the calendar, right
click on the calendar and click on Share Calendar. Select ‘Internal Users or
Groups’ and type in the e-mail address of the internal users with whom you want
to share the calendar with-in our case, Click on OK.
Again click on Share Calendar and this time select ‘External Guests.’ Type in
the e-mail ( in our case) and a password for external people
(say customers) to view the calendar.

Note that one can subscribe to the calendar using a URL like home/ (which is in
the format http:///home//).

A one stop AJAX based
interface to configure all aspects of your Messaging server. No more looking
at log files and mail queues from command

This URL fetches the ICS (iCalendar) file for the Project ABC calendar which can
in turn be fed to a calendar application like Mozilla Sunbird. The next obvious
step is to add appointments and meetings to the calendar. But wait, Zimbra
shines out here by providing an easy and logical way of adding appointments.

Integrated E-mail and Calendar
More often than not, one arrives at a meeting schedule over E-mails.
Subsequently one goes into the Calendar and schedules a meeting. Zimbra
facilitates this process through a single click. Look at the screenshot where
Binesh has sent a mail to Shekhar confirming a meeting tomorrow. Note that the
word tomorrow is a hyperlink.

Right clicking on the word ‘tomorrow’ and selecting ‘New Appointment’ will
bring up a small window which will allow us to add an appointment directly to
the calendar. Note that from the Calendar dropdown you can select the Project
ABC calendar. And voila, an appointment gets added to the Project ABC calendar
and all participants (as setup in the above section) get notified over e-mail.
Zimbra surely has much more to offer. Check out the flash demo at

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