SOGo 2.0: open source groupware with Outlook connectivity
The SOGo developers have released the first beta of version 2 of their open source groupware solution. The most significant new feature is native support for Microsoft Outlook: the developers say that Outlook 2003, 2007 and 2010 can connect directly to SOGo as if it were an Exchange server, without the need for additional plug-ins; this is achieved through the use of the SOGo OpenChange middleware.
SOGo supports the CalDAV and CardDAV standards, commonly used in the Apple world, for accessing calendar and contact data, as well as the GroupDAV protocol; it also supports mail access via external SMTP and IMAP servers. The SOGo Connector and Integrator provide improved access from Thunderbird and Lightning. SOGo's AJAX-based web interface was inspired by the Mozilla programs. Apple's iOS mobile operating system, and iCal and Address Book apps in Mac OS X are also supported.
Mobile devices can be synchronised via CalDAV as well as via SyncML and the Funambol SOGo Connector. A project to support Microsoft's Exchange ActiveSync, an XML-based protocol for connecting mobile devices to a messaging server, appears to have fallen dormant. An overview explains how the various components interact with each other.
Written in Objective C, SOGo is open source software that is released under the GPLv2/LGPLv2 and runs on Linux servers. Version 2.0 beta 1 is now available to download in source code form and as a virtual appliance for VirtualBox. The developers plan to provide packages for various Linux distributions with future beta releases.