GroupWise Synchronization for iPhone is here- tell your IT department!

NotifyLink for iPhoneThe day I thought would never come, arrived much sooner than expected! NotifyLink, a provider of server-side synchronization software for mobile devices, has just announced the availability of NotifyLink for the iPhone/iPod Touch. Of course, to make use of this technology, your organization has to have the NotifyLink Server.

There is a great support page which lays out how you setup your account (done though the Exchange option when adding an email account). There are pictures walking you though setting your email to configuring and accepting meeting invitations to using the Global Address Book for looking up your organizations contacts!

A quick summary, after the break!

iPhone Functionality and Overview

NotifyLink Enterprise Server allows iPhone and iPod touch devices to synchronize email, calendar and contacts using the native software contained on the device. There is no application software to install.

This section overviews NotifyLink functionality based on the parameters of the iPhone/iPod touch native software.

Email

      Uses the iPhone native email client to send, receive, reply to and forward emails

      Folder Mirroring allows email folders from your mail account to be synchronized to the device

      Email Filters, set on the NotifyLink server, filter mail sent to the device

      Attachment viewing is supported using device’s native viewers.  Emails with attachments can be forwarded.  With the exception of picture files in the device’s Camera Roll album, attaching a file residing on the device to an email is not currently supported.  You cannot save an attachment on the device.

PIM (Calendar and Contacts)

      Interfaces to the iPhone native Calendar and Contacts

      Synchronize calendar events in a configurable Look-Back/Look-Ahead range

      Choose Address Books (on groupware servers that support this)

      Remote Lookup (Global Address List) retrieves contact information from an LDAP directory using the iPhoneContacts application

      Receive and respond to meeting invitations

      Meeting invitations cannot be initiated from the device

      Task synchronization is not supported

Push Types

      Direct Push (Push) and Scheduled Push (Fetch) options

Security

      SSL encryption protocol for data-in-motion between the device and NotifyLink server

      Remote Wipe for devices lost or stolen

      Require password on device (Enabled via the NotifyLink Admin Web)

      Inactivity Timeout (Set on device via Auto-Lock)

The solution appears to work just like an Exchange account. What does this mean? For people that are already using MobileMe, it won't interfere and you can keep both accounts. This is truly great and exciting!

 

Chad Garrett

Software trainer, blogger and mobile technology enthusiast living in the suburban Midwest.

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There are 14 comments. Add yours.

Rene Ritchie says:

I am still not 100% convinced this whole "groupwise" thing really exists :)
But this is awesome news, and interesting given that others could theoretically also get "push" going. While Gmail has been particularly annoying for me as of late, a really well done IMAP IDLE implementation would be killer...

paanta says:

Thank god. I'm so tired of my kludgey solution of forwarding all my mail to mail2web in order to get push email. Though of course the best solution would be to get off of groupwise entirely. :)

Chad Garrett says:

Dieter, this could be really cool!

Tommy says:

paanta and Chad, you guys clearly don't know what you're talking about. Anyone who has used and administered both Groupwise and, I'm assuming your preferred alternative of Exchange because it's usually Exchange lovers that make such comments, knows that Groupwise is far more reliable, efficient, cost effective and the list goes on. There's nothing good about Exchange. Like most other Microsoft products, Exchange doesn't deserve the market share that it has, and only has it due to the MS Monopoly - not based on its own merit. The people that like it don't really like Exchange anyway - they like Outlook, which granted, is a nice product. Groupwise works very nicely with an Outlook plugin for those people. It's sad that there's so much poor advice circulating out there. Of course if you're not pushing for Exchange, your opinions are still equally as uninformed. Groupwise is an excellent corporate groupware system that most technical folks that support it hope will remain viable for a long time to come.

aRSoN says:

Tommy, I have worked in an MS shop and used Exchange/Outlook but work with Novell/Groupwise. While I agree there have been less issues, would you like to explain to the dozens of people here why they can't have a mobile solution while everyone else does, just because we're hanging on to Groupwise??? You know, pen and paper was more reliable than computers, too. They never crashed or blue screened and always did what you told them to. The issue, as with a lot of things these days, isn't so much reliability. Reliability means nothing to the lawyer who can't use his BB or iPhone because we have no solution other than bouncing emails around (with no calendar or contacts). To Sally Secretary, that's fine, we'll never hear from her. But we are asked all the time about mobile solutions and have none, apparently, until we go with the flow, even if it isn't as reliable as GW or pen and paper.

Robie says:

Why doesn't Novell develop an application for the Iphone. Apple released the SDK over a year ago.

John says:

I am not an IT guy...could someone please tell me if i can get an iphone and use groupwise without trying to pursuade work to pay more $$$ to make it compatible? Would be of great help!
thanks

Chris Hughes says:

aRSoN - Uhhh...first, both Blackberry BES and the Intellisync product have been around for YEARS offering push and fetch solutions from GroupWise. BES server and 5 clients were/are free with GroupWise and the Intellisync product offers push to hundred of cell phone mobiles YEARS before Microsoft had their server and is included free with GroupWise. I have worked almost two decades as a high end system integrator and long ago lost count of how many Exchange and GroupWise systems I have installed/upgraded. Yes, Novell is late to the game on the iPhone but you really should have a clue before you spout of pure BS. I can show you a dozen companies with over 25,000 users each and a SINGLE email admin who is bored most of the day - and I can show you a dozen companies with 1,000 users, 2+ full time admin for Exchange and well over 3 times the number of servers. There is not a single feature that Microsoft has that Novell didn't have years ago on the mail platform. Now, I am the first to agree that prior to 7/8 the GroupWise client was butt ugly and I much preferred Outlook. That has changed. Oh...and just an FYI, since GroupWise was born from the WordPerfect suite (which is what every Lawyer used in those days) there are 10 law firms on GroupWise for every 1 on Exchange.
That said, I honestly like Exchange more - since I make money based on project work, not license sales, and I get about 5x as many hours out of Exchange customers even though I have more and bigger GroupWise customers.

Shelly says:

Well said, Chris! GroupWise is great, to use and to admin. Not sure how it is with most folks, but messaging system reliability IS an issue here. COST for hard/software is an even bigger one, lately. My BBerry Storm has no issues what-so-ever interfacing with GW, "management" personel are buying BBerrys in droves here, and, as site email admin, I am one very happy camper. Looks like now my boss' lone iPhone has hope, but at what cost? Odd... a call to the Notify Link Sales department got me a recording.

Ed H says:

For the iPhone and any other phone that supports ActiveSync (like Google Android, etc) you can sync using Novell's new Data Synchronizer Mobility Pack. In beta now (March 2010) and it works great. I have it syncing today with my Motorola DROID and it works great for Contacts, Messages and Calender items bi-directionally.

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