Transactional Model for Sun's Outlook Connector
By jhawk on May 22, 2007
The below is a diagram representing the transactional model between Outlook Connector and the Sun Communication Suite Servers. I have broken this into four different types of transactions. I have diagramed the relationship between the Outlook Connector and Microsoft Outlook. These transactions are mostly GUI driven, and I haven't bothered to document all of those other than stating that these sit on a MAPI bus connection.
a. Access to Personal Address Book Information
b. Access to Mailbox and SMTP Delivery
c. Calendar Server Access
d. Corporate Address Book & Outlook Connector Configuration
(a) Personal Address Book Access
Outlook users have the ability to add, edit and remove their personal Contacts. On these actions, the Outlook Connector will connect with Communications Express to transmit these changes using the Web Address Book Protocol (WABP) which is a Sun Proprietary protocol.
On Communications Express is a special servlet which provides the WABP Service. This servlet also represents a LDAP Client which communicates back to the Directory Server. The WABP Service will first look up the user, then interact with the user's Address Book Data.
b) Mailbox Access and SMTP Delivery
On the Outlook Connector, a user may wish to retrieve their emails from their mailbox. In this case, the Outlook Connector acts as a IMAP client and connects to the Messaging Server. The Messaging server would evaluate the end-user's username and password with the Directory Server.
If a user is composing and sending an email, the Outlook Connector would provide a SMTP connection to the Messaging Server to attempt to deliver this message. In some cases, the user must first authenticate before sending their email. In this case, the Messaging Server will need to authenticate with the Directory Server.
c) Calendar Access
People may access their, or other's, calendars through the Outlook Connector. The connector communicates to the Calendar Server using the Web Calendar Access Protocol (WCAP). This is also a semi-proprietary (but published) protocol for the Sun Java Calendar Server. User authentication and profiling is provided by the Directory Server.
In Calendar Server 6.3, we added the feature for appointment attachments. This feature allows you to use the Outlook feature to attach a document to a particular appointment. In this case, the Calendar Server has an additional Attachment Store.
d) Corporate (or Global) Address Book
Outlook users may want to find someone within their company or organization which is not already in their Personal Address Book. For this the Outlook Connector becomes an LDAP client which communicates with the Directory Server. The Corp Address Book data are the normal user entries which are the user accounts.
For More Information:
Sun Java System Connector for Microsoft Outlook 7.2 Administration Guide