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Thread: ZCS on home network

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  1. #1
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    Question ZCS on home network

    Hi all. Despite being a somewhat non-expert user I've managed to install ZCS (open source) on Debian Lenny on a dedicated server at home (server.example.com). Hurrah! I can use another machine's browser to log in the administration console. All seems to be good...

    However.

    What I'm really looking for is a way to replace my current email client, Mozilla Thunderbird. I'm currently using this to retrieve/send email from a number of accounts (ie, XXX@btinternet.com, XXX@googlemail.com, XXX@another.com). I want to be able to do this in a browser rather than using an email client like Thunderbird, as I use my machine to dual-boot Linux and Windows 7 and need access to email/calendar/contacts at all times, regardless of what OS (or other machine) I'm using. Also to share my central contact and calendar with my better half.

    Is it possible to achieve this using ZCS? I've spent a lot of time searching so far but to no avail. If someone can please point me in the right direction, I'd be very grateful.

    I understand this could be achieved with Zimbra Desktop but that wouldn't really be suitable for my roaming needs.

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    I think you can probably accomplish what you are looking to do with ZCS. However, even if you only want to accumulate / consolidate email from other services / servers you are going to have to go through the process of setting up a domain under Zimbra, including all the fun (Split)-DNS stuff.

    Is there a specific part of the Zimbra install that you are having problems with, or are you just in the fact-gathering / planning stage?

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    Good to hear that I should be able to do what I'm intending to do, but I'm just unsure at this stage how to set up the Email accounts that I currently use. For example, In Thunderbird, to add an account I'd just go to Edit - Account Settings - Add Account and enter the account details. How do I do this in ZCS - using Split DNS? I should add that I have come across the Split DNS wiki on my travels and followed it but I currently don't see the relevance.

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    OK, now go back to the Zimbra Admin Console and add an account for the "fake" domain that you set-up (ie something like red@example.com). Once you have the account set-up log-in to the Zimbra Web Client (the address will be something like http://server.example.com or https://server.example.com depending on how you set-up log-in security) with the account and credentials that you set-up in the Admin Console. Then under the user account go to Preferences --> Mail --> Accounts and add any external accounts that you like.

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    Thank you for that, I seem to be getting somewhere. I've added an external account (let's call it red@external.com) and it retrieves emails, however, can I also send emails from this account? (In Thunderbird this would be set using the Outgoing Server (SMTP) settings).

    Also, is it possible to set up ZCS to automatically check for new incoming messages or do I have to manually click 'Get Mail' for external accounts?

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    Quote Originally Posted by red View Post
    Thank you for that, I seem to be getting somewhere. I've added an external account (let's call it red@external.com) and it retrieves emails, however, can I also send emails from this account? (In Thunderbird this would be set using the Outgoing Server (SMTP) settings).

    Also, is it possible to set up ZCS to automatically check for new incoming messages or do I have to manually click 'Get Mail' for external accounts?
    You can add external accounts like others have said, and you can have them updated automatically like so:

    you simply need to enable the automatic update feature using ZMProv. This is a per-cos feature, so you'll need to update it for each COS (though it can also be modified on a per-user basis).

    The values that may be set are:
    Code:
    zimbraDataSourceMinPollingInterval
    zimbraDataSourcePollingInterval
    The zimbraDataSourceMinPollingInterval is the minimum allowed interval, and the zimbraDataSourcePollingInterval is the default setting. You can see what they're currently set to via:
    Code:
    zmprov gc default zimbraDataSourcePollingInterval
    You may modify it via:
    Code:
    zmprov mc default zimbraDataSourcePollingInterval 5m
    That would set the interval to poll every 5 minutes.

    I believe you will need to restart mailboxd in order for this setting to take affect:
    Code:
    zmmailboxdctl restart
    You won't be able to send mail using the smtp settings on these accounts from within ZCS, so you'll need to setup your server to be able to do outbound mail. You can setup how email will look (customize your name, and email address that appears when you send mail from that Persona), but you can't tell ZCS what server to send the mail out through. That is a feature of Zimbra Desktop, if you'd rather use that instead.

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    Kind of venturing into unfamiliar territory here because I don't use external accounts, but I'll try...

    Thank you for that, I seem to be getting somewhere. I've added an external account (let's call it red@external.com) and it retrieves emails, however, can I also send emails from this account? (In Thunderbird this would be set using the Outgoing Server (SMTP) settings).
    You can try a couple of things here. If you have your server setup properly it may "just work". Have you tried sending any messages? Some ISP's, especially for home users, block ports associated with an email server. You can also setup Zimbra to use an external SMTP server in the Admin Console. Your best bet would be to search the forums and wiki for information on this, especially if your ISP requires authentication for sending email.

    Also, is it possible to set up ZCS to automatically check for new incoming messages or do I have to manually click 'Get Mail' for external accounts?
    I thought there was an outstanding RFE in Bugzilla for this feature, but I'm not able to find it ATM. I think for now at least you are stuck with the "Get Mail" click.

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    Many thanks all for some useful input, I think you've answered all my questions and concerns fully. It's a real shame (for me anyway) that ZCS does not currently have the functionality for me to input SMTP settings for external accounts for sending mail. Sadly for me this is a dealbreaker so I'll have to keep looking for another solution. I guess ZCS is more geared towards internal mail for companies rather than tiny networks like mine. What a pity - I think the ZCS browser interface is awesome.

    Would it be any use if I submit a request for such a feature in a forthcoming release?

  10. #10
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    Well, the feature is supposed to exist, it just doesn't work

    You can certainly vote for the bug that I link to above! So far there's no target release set for it and any votes help (sometimes).

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