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Ximian Announces Evolution 1.0 and Development of Proprietary MS Exchange Interoperability Software

Dec 03, 2001, 10:07 (55 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Michael Hall)

By Michael Hall, Managing Editor

Ximian, Inc. has announced the availability of Evolution 1.0. Evolution is an e-mail and personal information management application featuring a calendar, address book, and task list built under the GNOME desktop environment. Portions of Evolution have been under development for over two years, dating back to initial references by GNOME Project founder Miguel de Icaza to 'Camel,' an e-mail API he had designed in hopes of building what was to become Evolution.

Since then, development of Evolution has unfolded very much in the public eye, with Ximian making an initial public release of the product last June. Development also seemed slow at some points, with many initially expecting that the software would be released in final form by Fall of 2000. The anticipated release was then pushed back to coincide with the release of GNOME 1.4, which occured in Spring of 2001.

Ximian's own feature list from the press release announcing Evolution 1.0 includes:

  • Powerful Email Handling: Features such as flexible message formatting (including HTML and text format as well as embedded images or attachments), address recognition, built-in spell checker, automatic email indexing, user-defined filters and multiple email account management and support for industry standard security and encryption (PGP/GPG, SASL, SSL/TLS) give Ximian Evolution superior email capabilities for Linux and UNIX users. The unique vFolders let users save email searches to dynamically create powerful, contextual views of their messages.
  • Flexible Calendaring and Collaboration: Ximian Evolution lets users effortlessly create one-time, all-day or recurring events, including on screen, email or sound reminders. Users can schedule and confirm group meetings, even with Microsoft Outlook and Lotus Notes users.
  • Integrated Information management: In addition to robust address book and to-do list management, Ximian Evolution seamlessly integrates each of the applications in its suite. The Summary provides an on screen snapshot of upcoming appointments, tasks, new email, news, weather and more. QuickSearch finds appointments, contacts, email messages, and to-do items fast. And built-in synchronization keeps Ximian Evolution users' calendars, contacts and tasks up-to-date with their Palm handheld devices.
The software is capable of handling POP3 and IMAP as well as importing traditional UNIX mail formats such as mbox and maildir. Evolution works with SMTP and authenticated SMTP, and can also take advantage of secure IMAP.

Supported distributions include: Red Hat 6.2, 7.0, 7.1 and 7.2; Mandrake 7.0, 7.1, 7.2 and 8.0; SuSE 6.4, 7.0, 7.1 and 7.2; Debian GNU Linux 2.2; TurboLinux 6.0; Yellow Dog 1.2 and 2.0; LinuxPPC 2000 and Solaris 8.

In addition to the ability to download the software via FTP or Ximian's Red Carpet, the company also announced users will find the product available with its Ximian Desktop Standard Edition and Professional Editions: shrinkwrap products of the entire Ximian GNOME desktop environment costing $29.95 and $49.95 respectively.

Ximian Connector Also Announced

Ximian also announced 'Ximian Connector' today: a proprietary extension to Evolution still under development that the company says will allow Evolution to communicate directly with Microsoft Exchange 2000, tying users into existing Exchange-based systems. The Ximian Connector will be priced at $69 per seat with discounts or $599 for a 10 pack and $1499 for a 25 pack. The company says the product will also ship with 90 days of web-based installation support.

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