GroupWise: The Next Chapter!


Bob Flynn is the new President and General Manager for the Novell Business Unit. He posted a blog on July 28th outlining the ‘Next Chapter’ for Novell. See Blog here.

The day before this blog was posted, Bob and Jeff Hawn - Attachmate Group CEO - addressed the engineering team in a BBQ lunch meeting at the Provo campus. It was a call to action! In my opinion, Attachmate Executives have done an excellent job in just a few short weeks of streamlining the portfolio and focusing our efforts, resources, energy and future in all of the right directions – finally!! The simple statement: “Novell is hiring more R & D resources in Provo, UT and reinvesting in our core products with more frequent releases” is music to my ears. I have also heard from our customers and partners that this is an awesome and a welcomed message. Furthermore, this is immediately affecting the GroupWise engineering resources– positions have been posted, recruiting and re-recruiting has begun.

Not only is it important, from my perspective, to increase the investment in our core products, but it is equally important how the “focus and portfolio management” will allow us to be able to cleanly execute. We finally having a collaboration strategy that is business focused, customer driven, product and marketing managed and engineering aligned will make such a huge difference!

In addition, I have been asked to take on a new project where I will be spending my time executing one of our new taglines: create a direct line of sight from our customers directly to our engineering teams. Our customers have always been very loyal and now we need to help you be loyal. It will obviously take some time to satisfy each and every customer, but with the added investment and the renewed executive interest in wanting to make the Collaboration business a success, this will get done!

In addition, we still have a very dedicated and talented engineering team – the absolute best. I have full confidence they will deliver.

Now I don’t want to over promise or make anyone believe that ‘tomorrow’ we will provide solutions for everything. But our commitment is:

  • Deliver higher-quality solutions and greater customer value faster

  • Enable customers to upgrade to latest versions at their own pace

  • Enable and secure a portable workspace across wired and mobile devices

  • Consolidate and leverage social experience across our collaboration portfolio

Here is a list of categories (some are very big buckets, I know) where our customers expect solutions. Help us prioritize! Give me your top 3 out of this list and any specifics you want to include. Have we missed any? Are there any of these that you are not as interested in?

Note: They are not in any particular order.

  • 3rd-Party Integrations

  • Mobility (RIM, ActiveSync)

  • Quality

  • Windows Client Features

  • WebAccess Features (Tablet/Simple Templates, Web IM)

  • Co-Existence (Exchange/GW)

  • Currency (latest platforms, fresh look, latest architecture)

  • Active Directory Support / Administration Model

  • Unified Communications

  • Security

  • Instant Messaging/Conferencing

  • Document Management

  • Cloud / Hosted

  • Mac

  • Outlook

Of course, this list is very high level. In several of these areas there is currently a solution or a partial solution.

Well – It seems like I have said enough….Thoughts?



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  • be utterly disheartened by a lot of the comments.

    Outlook - For those of you folding on this all I have to say is that you are not evangelizing GroupWise. Outlook completely subverts a system being auditable and discoverable with local files on the workstation. I don't know how many times things have gone sideways because a PST file was corrupted.

    You have to be a true believers and you have to show why in no uncertain terms that GroupWise is the superior product and you have to sell sell sell!!!

    Having said that the Developers have to give us a GW client that is re-factored, bloat removed and can out outlook, Outlook AND is truly X-Plat, but until then we have to fight the good fight.

    Unified Messaging - About 1 in 10000 people use all of that cruft at once. Make phone calls through and e-mail client? Really? I don't think the vast majority of customers do that.

    Customers that switch to Windows for file and print are already MS centric clients and they WILL go with OL/E and very few will continue with GW.

    "No More NetWare Client for single sign-on..." I don't even know what that means. GroupWise can take its credentials from the network connection. If in a windows environment then the security token a network connection is in memory and GW can access that.

    Those of you advocating the elimination of ConsoleOne as the administration utility are correct, but if you think that having you GW configuration based upon the Apache/Tomcat stack are very much asking for trouble since you obviously have very short memories. The entire house of cards can come crashing down far to easily. Even MS does not do that with critical systems. A VERY thin client akin the to MMC needs to be developed and built that is completely X-Plat for administration of the GW system. This must be a completely self contained executable that does not require a privileged account to run and no installation is required. You simply pull it down, start it up and point at the GW system you need to administer. Failing that, then a single agent that is a self contained Micro-HTML stack needs to be built that does not require anything else. If the Apache/Tomcat stack is broken for ANY reasons and GW depends on it of administration then you have a running GW system that you cannot configure and that is a deal breaker.

    You really want to harp on something? How about getting ALL GW settings OUT of the registry. Whomever did that stupidity needs some serious re-education. EVERY setting for the client should be stored in the GW user database That way when you run, "Reset Client Options" they actually all RESET so that after a user has completely trashed their GW client configuration it is a simple fix.

  • What a great comment, FlyingGuy!

    I am totally on your side. You have to decide if you are voting for Groupwise or anything else. That said, a IT guy doesn't want to look for "How to integrated OL to GW" but to "Look what GW can do better than OL"!

    One feature that is totally underestimated is the Home View. If I show this to Outlook users the just say " Wow, I want to have this!".

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