Monday Apr 02, 2007

Minor Discrepancy: Clarifying Calendar Attachments in Comms Suite 5

We noticed this slight discrepancy in the Communications Suite 5 Release Notes:

In the Communications Express 6.3 section:

The Calendar component of Communications Express allows users to include attachments to an event or task.

However, in the Calendar Server 6.3 release section, we have:

While Communications Express, the Web user interface, does not support attachments yet, users of the Connector for Microsoft Outlook can now put attachments in their events and tasks, and can send attachments with invitations.

The answer is that the Communications Express 6.3 interface does indeed support calendar attachments, but the older Calendar Express interface does not. In fact, with respect to the Calendar Express interface, we are now saying (quote from Releaase Notes):

"The Calendar Express graphical user interface (GUI) has been deprecated in favor of the Communications Express GUI and will be removed from the distribution in the the next major feature release. Move to Communications Express as soon as possible.

Sunday Mar 25, 2007

New Communications Suite Technical Note: Comparing LDAP Schema Modes

Our Calendar Server writer just produced a rather interesting technical note titled "Technical Article: Comparison of Sun Java System LDAP Schema Modes for Communications Suite Products," which should go a long way towards filling the information gap that currently exists around this topic. You can get this technical note here:

http://docs.sun.com/app/docs/doc/820-0639

Short description of this doc:

This article compares the Sun Java System LDAP schema modes used by the Sun Java Communications Suite products. It includes an overview and history of both modes, an example of domain and user LDAP entries for both schema modes, and a discussion on how to decide which mode is appropriate for you.

Shorter article, for those who don't have the time to digest it all:

  • You should use the same schema version for all Communications Suite products sharing the same LDAP directory.
  • If you require Sun Java System Access Manager to share the same LDAP user directory with Communications Suite products, use one of the Schema version 2 modes.
  • You should not use Schema version 1 mode unless you satisfy all of the following criteria.
    • You have an earlier version of one of the Communications Suite products already installed using Schema version 1.
    • And, you don't want to use Access Manager.
    • And, you don't want to migrate your LDAP database to either mode of Schema version 2.
  • If Sun Java Communications Suite Delegated Administrator does not have the features you require, but iPlanet Delegated Administrator does, use Schema version 1 mode.
  • If you are installing Communications Suite products for the first time, choose the Schema version 2 mode that integrates most easily with your current DIT structure. You can choose between Schema version 2 native mode or compatibility mode. The two modes are defined in Schema Version 2 Background Information.
UPDATE, May 2, 2007

As one astute commentator noted to me offline, once you are convinced that you ought to migrate your deployment from V.1 to V.2, what next? Apologies, we neglected to include a pointer in this article to the Schema Migration Guide, which "describes how to migrate Sun Java System LDAP Directory data from LDAP Schema 1 to LDAP Schema 2 for Sun Java Communications Suite, specifically Sun Java System Messaging Server and Sun Java System Calendar Server."

Friday Mar 23, 2007

Comms Suite 5: Get the New Software (Correct Link)

Okay, we messed up a bit. I didn't get that there was a NEW download site in the works for the Comms Suite 5 bits. Here it is:

http://www.sun.com/download/products.xml?id=45f95b76

Thanks to those letting me know in the comments section that I was still pointing to the 2005Q4 download site on the Comms Hub. That's being fixed right now too. Sorry for the inconvenience.

Friday Mar 16, 2007

Communications Suite 5 and Java ES: The Parting of the Ways

Just a heads-up about the forthcoming Communications Suite 5 release, in case you've missed it: Comms in no longer part of Java ES. So, all the Comms Suite 5 products--Messaging Server 6.3, Calendar Server 6.3, Instant Messaging 7.2--aren't part of the Java ES 5 bundle, and they won't be part of a Java ES bundle going forward. You'll download a separate Comms software bundle now, once we make it available. In addition, there will be separate Comms Install and Upgrade Guides. In the past, this information was included in the Java ES docs.

Here's the official statement that will appear in the docs:

Change in Availability of Communications Suite Products

Beginning with this release of Communications Suite 5, communications products are being removed from the Sun Java Enterprise System entitlement. Communications products are available as part of the Communications Suite or as individual products. Communications products will no longer be installed through the Java Enterprise System installer. Communications product components continue to interoperate with Java Enterprise System components.

This change in entitlement does not affect the communications products in Java Enterprise System 2005Q4. If you have communication products installed, no change will occur to your entitlement.

Thursday Mar 15, 2007

Communications Suite 5 Q&A: Access Manager, Delegated Admin, and Schema

There continues to be a fair amount of confusion (or miscommunication on our part) around Access Manager, Delegated Administrator, and schema choice. And the same confusion potentially could exist when it comes to deploying Comms Suite 5. So, here in a nutshell, are what I think are the basic questions and answers surrounding these products. I'll try and keep track of these issues going forward and continue to post them.

  1. In Communications Suite 5, does Delegated Administrator 6.4 still require you to deploy Access Manager?
    Yes, Delegated Administrator 6.4 still requires you to deploy Access Manager.
  2. In Communications Suite 5, does Communications Express 6.3 require you to deploy Access Manager?
    Starting with the Communications Suite 5 release, this dependency on Access Manager for Schema 2 has been removed.

    In previous releases, Communications Express used the following APIs and libraries to establish connections and fetch information from an LDAP store:

    • Domain MAP API (which a part of Communications Express) if Communications Express was deployed using Schema 1 mode.
    • Access Manager SDK if Communications Express was deployed using Schema 2

    This made Communications Express dependent on Access Manager in Schema 2 mode even though Access Manager is not mandatory for it to work apart from just connecting and fetching information from the LDAP store.

  3. When do I need to deploy Schema 2? Do I only need Schema 2 in an Access Manager/Delegated Administrator situation?
    Delegated Administrator currently supports only Schema 2. Other situations requiring Schema 2 include integration with Portal Server, and with Access Manager (for SSO).
For more information on these topics, see my previous entry.

Wednesday Mar 14, 2007

Communications Suite 5 Doc Leak: Installing on a Single Host

I know we're not shipping Communications Suite 5 until March 23, but you can go ahead and grab a copy of single host deployment example now:

http://docs.sun.com/app/docs/doc/820-0086

This deployment example describes how to install Sun Java Communications Suite 5 software on one computer for a functioning deployment. This document is intended for any evaluator, system administrator, or installation technician who wants to install and evaluate the services delivered by these components.

Now all you have to do is wait for the bits.

Update In the past, this example has documented how to install the Communications Channels (portlets) provided by our Portal Server product. That's a thing of the past. Looks like Portal is no longer providing these specific Comms Channels anymore, though the 'capability' to deploy these channels still exists. Heads-up to those of you who have used this out-of-the-box functionality in previous releases.

Friday Mar 09, 2007

Comms Suite 5: The Long Wait Is Over

Good news for those of you who have been waiting, ahem, a bit longer than you initially thought: Communications Suite 5 will be available March 23, 2007.

If you haven't seen my previous posts on what's new in this upcoming release, here they are:

Tuesday Jan 16, 2007

Slicing and Dicing Communications Suite 5 - The Rest of the Story

Continuing this thread on what's new in the upcoming Sun Java Communications Suite 5 release, here's the rest of the story on Instant Messaging, Delegated Administrator, Communications Express, and Connector for Outlook.

What's New in This Release of Instant Messaging

This section includes the following topics:

  • Instant Messaging XMPP Redirect Server

  • Sun Java Enterprise System Monitoring Framework Support in Instant Messaging

  • Instant Messaging Redeploy Script Changes

Instant Messaging XMPP Redirect Server

The XMPP redirect server balances the load between servers in a server pool, increasing performance by decreasing the amount of communication required between servers in a single deployment. The XMPP redirect server increases the probability that two users who will likely share presence information and messages end up on the same node. You use a redirect service to optimize resource utilization. The redirect service directs client connections to specific hosts in the server pool.

Sun Java Enterprise System Monitoring Framework Support in Instant Messaging

This release of Instant Messaging supports version 2.0 of the monitoring framework. This monitoring framework provides information on the length of time for authentication, message delivery, the number of instant messages sent through the service, and other statistics.

Instant Messaging Redeploy Script Changes

The redeploy script used to redeploy Instant Messenger resource files has been renamed to iwadmin.

Event Notification Service (ENS) Support in Instant Messaging

In this release there are two notification services for Calendar pop-ups: Sun Java System Message Queue (JMQ) and Event Notification Service (ENS). In a future release, the Communications Services products (Instant Messaging, Calendar Server, and Messaging Server) will use JMQ exclusively and ENS will be removed. However, for this release, you can continue to use ENS.

Legacy SSL and TLS Support for Instant Messaging

TLS support was added to Instant Messaging in the previous release; however, the Sun Java System Instant Messaging 7 2006Q1 Administration Guide did not adequately cover instructions for setting up TLS. TLS is used for communication between the server and clients, other servers, and Instant Messaging components such as the XMPP/HTTP Gateway. Legacy SSL is still supported for communication between clients and the multiplexor. Legacy SSL is no longer supported by the server. The Sun Java System Instant Messaging 7.2 Administration Guide now provides detailed information about setting up security for your deployment.

As a result of the implementation of TLS in Instant Messaging, you are no longer prompted to enter an SSL port for the server when you run configure.

The following iim.conf parameters are no longer used:

  • iim_server.sslport - No separate port is required for TLS connections.

  • iim_server.usesslport - No separate SSL port.

  • iim_server.secconfigdir - No longer have NSS key and certificate database for the server.

  • iim_server.keydbprefix - No longer have NSS key and certificate database for the server.

  • iim_server.certdbprefix - No longer have NSS key and certificate database for the server.

  • iim_server.coserver1.usessl - This has been replaced with iim_server.coserver1.requiressl.

The following iim.conf parameters are new for this release:

  • iim_server.requiressl

  • iim_server.sslkeystore

  • iim_server.coserver1.requiressl

Refer to the Sun Java System Instant Messaging 7.2 Administration Guide for information about using these parameters.

The Instant Messenger client uses imssl.html and imssl.jnlp only for legacy SSL connections. Instant Messenger supports TLS automatically when it connects to a server that is configured to use TLS.

What's New in This Release of Delegated Administrator

Delegated Administrator 6.4 includes the following changes and new features:

  • Support for Calendar Groups

  • Web Server 7.x Deployment

  • Access to Instant Messaging

  • Debug Log Command for the Delegated Administrator Server

Support for Calendar Groups

Delegated Administrator supports provisioning of calendar groups.

You can use Delegated Administrator to assign calendar service to a group. When the group is first invited to an event, Calendar Server creates a group calendar shared by the users who are members of the group. Invitations to the group appear on the group calendar and on the calendars of the individual members.

The following features implement support for calendar groups:

  • In the console, you can assign service packages with calendar service to groups. In the Create Group wizard, a Calendar Service Details panel allows you to specify Calendar attributes for the group. Calendar service details can be modified in the group properties page.

  • In the command-line utility, the commadmin group create and commadmin group modify commands have been enhanced to support calendar groups.

Web Server 7.x Deployment

Delegated Administrator can be deployed to Sun Java System Web Server 7.x.

When you run the configuration program, config-commda, you can configure the Delegated Administrator server and console to be deployed to Web Server 7.x.

Access to Instant Messaging

Users created in Delegated Administrator will have access to Instant Messaging (IM) service if IM is deployed on your site. Users are automatically assigned basic IM service during user creation.

You must use the Access Manager console to set and manage IM user-access levels. In this release of Delegated Administrator, the Delegated Administrator console does not provide access to IM service and does not provide an interface for managing IM user-access levels.

Debug Log Command for the Delegated Administrator Server

In the command-line utility, the commadmin debug log command creates a Delegated Administrator server log that contains debug statements generated by the Delegated Administrator servlets installed on the Web container.

With the commadmin debug logcommand, you must create the log in the /tmp/ or /var/tmp/ directory.

The commadmin debug log command supersedes the use of the url to enable logging for the Delegated Administrator server. The url used in previous releases can no longer be used for this purpose.

What's New in This Release of Communications Express

New features in Sun Java System Communications Express 6.3 include:

Support for Attachments in Events/Tasks

The Calendar component of Communications Express allows users to include attachments to an event or task.

Next Available Free Period Button

Communications Express allows users to check availability of invitees. If the invitee is not available for the day of the event, the next available free period button displays the availability of the invitee in the subsequent six days.

Address Book Sharing

The Address book component of Communications Express allows users to share their address book globally as well as to specific users. You can also assign specific permissions to users who subscribe to your address book. You can also subscribe to other shared address books.

Support for Multiple Address Book

Communications Express allows users to create and maintain more than one address books.

Preserving Customization

Starting this release, the Communications Express upgrade script will preserve all customizations that have been made in the product. This was not possible in earlier releases and all customizations were lost on a patch upgrade.

Password Encryption

Starting this release Communications Express configurator tool enctyps passwords during configuration. This is done transparently by the configuration tool. Communications Express now has a tool to encrypt and manage passwords. Administrators can change passwords by running this script.

LDAP Failover Mechanism

The LDAP failover mechanism in Communications Express balances load between a number of configured master and slave LDAP servers. This increasing performance by decreases the response time. Communications Express contains an LDAP failover Manager module that is responsible to retrieve connections from the master or slave servers. Each load balancing server maintains a pool of available free connections. Whenever a Communications Express component requires a connection to the LDAP server, the LDAP failover manager provides the component with a connection based on the load balancing strategy employed.

Mail Integration into Communications Express

Starting this release, the Webmail related user interface components have been moved to Communications Express. In the earlier releases of Communications Express, the mail related files were resident in the Messaging Server. Also, in previous releases of Communications Express, the webmail and the web container ports had to be available for it to work. As a result of this change, only the web container port needs to be available for Communications Express to work.

Removal of Access Manager SDK Dependency for Schema 2 Deployment

In previous releases, Communications Express used the following APIs and libraries to establish connections and fetch information from an LDAP store:

  • Domain MAP API (which a part of Communications Express) if Communications Express was deployed using Schema 1 mode.

  • Access Manager SDK if Communications Express was deployed using Schema 2

This made Communications Express dependent on Access Manager in Schema 2 mode even though Access Manager is not mandatory for it to work apart from just connecting and fetching information from the LDAP store. Starting this release, this dependency on Access Manager for Schema 2 has been removed. Communications Express is now shipped with a new Domain MAP API for Schema 2.


Note - As a result of this, users who log in to Communications Express cannot log on to Access Manager Console.


What's New in This Release of Connector for Microsoft Outlook

New features in Sun Java System Connector for Microsoft Outlook 7.2 include:

  • Polling multiple folders.

    A new option in the Deployment Configuration Program allows multiple mail folders, including Inbox to be checked for new unread messages. This option can be useful if message filters have been set up to automatically move incoming messages to specific folders other than Inbox, or if the direct delivery to a specific folder option has been enabled.

  • Creating and sharing multiple calendars and tasks.

  • Creating and sharing multiple address books.

  • Adding attachments to calendar events. Attachments are saved on server.

  • Viewing group memberships within contact details (applies only to the corporate directory).

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Reporting about Unified Communications Suite Documentation, including news, Comms 101, documentation updates, and tips and tricks.

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