Configuring Linux as a domain controller and groupware server

Q I have a client who needs me to get him a collaborative mail server such as Microsoft Exchange. I can easily do the project 100% in Windows (ie Windows 200x and Exchange 200x). However, I know that I can configure Linux as a domain controller. I am sure I can handle that but I need to know, is there a mail server in Linux that can work like Exchange still using Microsoft Outlook as the client? It would be great if there is a total Linux solution.

A There are a number of options, depending on how much your client is prepared to pay or how much work you are prepared to do. OpenGoupware.org (www.opengroupware.org) is an open source groupware server that works with clients on all major platforms. It isn't a mail server itself, but it provides the groupware functions and works with standard mail servers, with which you are probably already familiar. OpenGoupware.org can be used under the GPL or LGPL licence, so there is no licensing cost, but there would probably be a fair bit of work in setting up and supporting the system.

If the server is running on a separate machine, the SUSE Linux Openexchange server provides a Linux equivalent to MS Exchange, working with Microsoft clients like Outlook. This is a complete OS install, so it cannot be run alongside other software on an existing system. You can find more information and an online demo at www.novell.com/products/openexchange note that this solution has a price tag. A third alternative is the similarly named, but unconnected, Open-Xchange from www.openexchange.com. This is another commercial offering, available for Red Hat and SUSE. As with the SUSE product, it is intended for use as a direct replacement for MS Exchange. Which of these is most suitable depends on your client's circumstances and budget, but one of these three should provide what you and they need.

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