Hey people,

I just spent a week or so playing around with Zimbra using a test account that a Hosted Zimbra partner gave me access to. This was to see if Zimbra could work for my specific needs.

Despite the fact that I liked what I saw, I would like to provide some feedback here with regards to what Zimbra could do for me in the ideal situation.

If you reply, I would like to hear why you think my ideas are good or bad and explain.

Here goes nothing....

Ideally, the Zimbra server would be the one-stop shop for all my email. It retrieves all the mail from my various accounts (work email, university email, personal email, gmail, and what not).

This and all the identities related to each email, including all my calender info and address book info, is stored on the Zimbra server.

Then, as an end user I can decide which client to use: Zimbra Desktop, my mobile phone, or any other email client.

You may think, isn't this already what Zimbra offers? Well, almost...

My main issue atm is that for external email I need to logon to the Zimbra webclient, retrieve the email and only then does it sync with my mobile phone. If I, for example, want to access my gmail on my mobile phone, I need to either load it separately, or retrieve it with zimbra webmail client first.

Also, the Zimbra Desktop client, in my opinion, should be nothing more than a facility that lets you use Zimbra Webmail from your desktop in both online and offline situations. All configuration info should come from the server. All you need to do is enter the Zimbra server address and the rest is loaded from the server.

To reiterate:

Zimbra Server
  - Gmail Account
  - University Account
  - Email account @mydomain.com

Each account is tied to an identity and you have the option to select a seperate
SMTP server for each account. Replying to a message that belongs to a certain
identity automatically loads that identity and uses the selected SMTP server for
sending messages.

Basically, Zimbra Web Client is the hosted version of Outlook. You load various
accounts, can send and receive email from various accounts, and manage all of
them from one central location.

Zimbra desktop is then nothing more than an app that lets you have offline access
to your account as well. Literally ALL settings are loaded from the server. The
reverse would therefore also be true; if you make changes to the settings in Zimbra
Desktop, these are automatically saved on the server and also get synced with all
other Zimbra Desktop clients (or mobile clients) that access the same account.
Ok, long story, but I hope it makes sense.

The only issue I myself see with this setup is that you might increase your server load quite a lot because it has to send/receive email from various other servers.

Anyways, I look forward to your replies!