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Thread: lack luster features

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    Join Date
    Jul 2008
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    Default lack luster features

    Hello,
    I'm new to zimbra. I've just installed the Zimbra Desktop on CentOS5. It installed fine and initially ran. However, while downloading mail from my POP3 account, the jetty server crapped out several times. I have about 3K messages so it took a while. The first time it crashed, it took a while for me to figure out what was wrong and how to get it to continue. I got a "cannot connect to localhost" on whatever port its on. Then, I had to restart it at least 10 times while my mail was downloading.
    * This should not happen in the first place. If it does, it should be rare. This is a bug.
    * The documentation was not helpful in figuring out how to resolve this issue. I nearly chucked the Zimbra Desktop due to this.

    After finally getting all of my mail. I started using the Zimbra Desktop. There does not seem to be an import/export feature for mail. I could not find it anywhere in the GUI. If i missed it please let me know where it is and how to use it.
    * Both importing and exporting mail are extremely important. If the Zimbra Desktop cannot do this, then it is little more than a toy.
    * Importing is necessary because users may have already dowloaded and removed mail from a server.
    * If importing is not both possible and easy, then Zimbra Desktop has limited itself extremely.
    * Exporting is of paramount importance: even more important than importing. A user needs to be able to export mail to a standard format. Although the Derby DB stores the mail in text files in the store dir; it is saved in a non-standard format that cannot be used anywhere but in the Zimbra Desktop. That is absolutely horrible.
    * During any kind of upgrade from old versions of Zimbra Desktop to new version, it would be wise to export the mail to a safe location, then re-import it when after the upgrade. There is a note in the installation instructions that says to delete the entire Zimbra dir when upgrading versions prior to some build number and that the mail is safely stored on the server. That is horrible assumption on the part of the developers. User have the ability to delete their mail from the server after retrieving it.
    * The lack of an export for mail destroys the concept of freedom. If a user cannot freely and easily migrate their mail from Zimbra Deskop to a standard format for use in another tool, then Zimbra Desktop is a jail. Nothing is perfect, and no tool is perfect. But if a tool makes it hard for a user to leave, then the result will be a bad impression of the tool and the likelihood of that user returning to that tool will be significantly diminished. I, for one, am the type to never return when the cost of leaving is high. I don't like jail and I have no desire to be imprisoned by any tool including Zimbra Desktop.

    The configurable options for Zimbra Desktop are lacking in ability.
    * in the setup; downloading mail; get new mail option: only a handful of choices are available and there is no option for the user to enter a user set frequency. "every 5 minutes" is the most frequent option. That is simply inadequate.
    * in the preferences; displaying messages; display option: only 10, 25, 50, and 100 are available. That make sense for a thin client reaching across the internet to a mail server, but is absolutely absurd for a "thick" client whose mail is served up by the localhost. If I am not mistaken, Zimbra Desktop is supposed to be a thick client. I understand the concept that it a "copy" of the webclient and is simply hitting a local email service; however, if Zimbra Desktop intends to be a true thick client and compete with other thick clients, then it cannot be a simple copy of the webclient: it must be a fork with more features and definitely more configurable options. This is a show stopper for me. If I cannot view all of the messages in a folder, then I cannot use Zimbra Desktop.
    * mail filters; there is no option to execute a local script as the action portion of the filter. I don't know how many ordinary users that would find this useful, but I am a developer. I currently use Evolution which has this feature. I use it often. Although I can jump through a few hoops to get a similar behavior by using the "forward to" option, I'd rather keep things simple and just execute the script from my thick client.
    * There are absolutely no options for handling received and read mail confirmations. How does the Zimbra Desktop respond to a request for receipt of mail? How does it respond to the request for a request for read mail confirmation? Did I miss something in the documentation? If so, let me know where it is and what the behavior is. But beyond knowing what the behavior is, it needs to be configurable. Having no choice in how the Zimbra Desktop will respond to these requests is horrible. Alone, the lack of this feature would not be enough to make me drop the tool, but it is a strong negative.

    Since I am new to Zimbra Desktop, I may have simply "not found" features that do exist. So, I'm asking for a Zimbra Desktop expert to please review my comments and address each item. I need to know if the Zimbra Deskop is a tool that I can use. Please help.

    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by zknight; 07-01-2008 at 06:35 PM.

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