Linux e-mail software gets Exchange look

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Linux e-mail software gets Exchange look

Ximian, an open source software maker, has launched a product that will allow users of its Linux applications to connect to a corporate network running Microsoft's Exchange 2000 server software.

The company has announced Version 1.0 of Ximian Evolution, its personal and workgroup management software for Linux and Unix operating systems.

Like Microsoft's Outlook e-mail management software, Evolution includes applications for accessing e-mail, calendars, address books and to-do lists.

Ximian has also developed a proprietary piece of software called Ximian Connector for Microsoft Exchange, which will allow Ximian Evolution users to plug their Linux computer into a corporate network running an Exchange server.

The connector will extend Evolution into the Windows environment, enabling users to manage e-mail, calendars and to-do lists as if they were using Microsoft's Outlook software.

"This allows Evolution users on Linux to become good corporate citizens," said John Perr, vice-president of marketing at Ximian.

Ximian usually works with users running Linux machines who have difficulty managing the machines in a Windows network. As a result they often end up with a second Windows PC beside their Linux box to access e-mail and other productivity applications.

"Those people will now really be able to use their Linux desktop as their primary work environment, and collaborate with other Exchange users," he said.

About 800,000 users have downloaded or purchased Ximian Evolution since open source developers began working on the software two years ago, the company said.

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