So here’s a gap in the “Linux in the corporate world” thing…
I’ve been looking for a convenient way to access our Exchange 2007 server when not at my desk. Sure, I have a rather nice laptop… but it isn’t svelte and while at the office it is docked with a bunch of USB stuff and a pair of 24” monitors attached. I figure a smaller laptop that could just get me to my mail and tasks would be ideal, especially when out of the office.
To minimize licensing costs (OS and Outlook) I thought I’d start with Linux. I have Ubuntu on an older IBM ThinkPad and Ubuntu 10.04 NBR on my little 7” Eee netbook. Both are light, very portable and boot quickly.
Damned if I can figure out a way to conveniently connect to our Exchange server though!
Here’s the wrinkle: We don’t open a lot of ports on our Exchange server. No IMAP or POP3. We just use the HTTP connection options when out of the office.
First I tried Evolution. Turns out it doesn’t have the ability to access Exchange servers newer than 2003. Via Twitter, it was suggested that I try the Evolution-MAPI provider. This works pretty well when at the office but doesn’t make it through the firewall. Close, but no cigar.
Thunderbird? I didn’t find anything useful there either.
Outlook Web Access? Tolerable in a pinch, but the non-Internet Explorer experience is lacking. Good enough to check the inbox and send off a quick mail, but for longer term use – I use lots of rules that move mail to lots of folders – it gets a bit tedious.
Anyone cracked this nut yet? I really don’t want to have to fallback to opening up IMAP… surely someone has figured out “native” Exchange ‘07 from Linux?