Bonum Certa Men Certa

What (In)Compatibility Games is Microsoft up to With Exchange 2007?

"You should make sure it [DR-DOS] has problems in the future : )"

--Jim Allchin, Microsoft (RE: dri/novell/ibm)



Story contributed by an anonymous site reader

Tbout a year ago, we got a new President who came from Brown University, which is an Ivy League institution that has switched to MS Exchange for e-mail. He more or less demanded that we offer Exchange as well. We now offer Exchange for faculty and staff. I had to fight pretty hard to maintain my non-Exchange e-mail account. We also have a CIO who is appropriately skeptical of Microsoft and wants to retain a non-Microsoft e-mail alternative.

“They also don't know when the functionality broke and there's no word on when it will be fixed.”That is the background. The crux is that I am now forced to use Exchange calendar if I want to set up a meeting with someone. Since I rarely use the calendar, I just access it via the Web interface using Firefox or Konqueror from my Linux desktop. Until recently, this has worked adequately.

However, they have recently been trying to do an "in-place upgrade" from Exchange 2003 to Exchange 2007. Now I find that when I try to schedule a meeting, the part which shows the availability of the attendees looks like gibberish. When I switched to using Windows XP and Internet Explorer under a virtual machine, everything suddenly worked fine. Out Windows admins claim that they did know about this problem until I raised it. They also don't know when the functionality broke and there's no word on when it will be fixed.

You might be interested in hearing the travails of someone who is trying to keep Windows at least at arm's length but who find it challenging.

[Editor's note: It is a similar situation over here. An Exchange server is very unstable, based on personal experience, but luckily I never use it. I've also come across stories about IE-only features in Sharepoint.]

My instinct tells me that this little upgrade problem is intentionally created by Microsoft. I also remember from a previous job that one of my colleagues was very keen to "upgrade" our Linux mail server, which I had set up, to Exchange. Somewhere along the way, I found out that Microsoft recommended disabling the POP and IMAP protocols "for security reasons." (It's very "deja vu" in light of the recent revelation of a recent Microsoft patch to Office which disables old file formats, again "for security reasons.")

“There is also the truism that, if it only supports a recent version of Microsoft software, that would tend to produce more fiscal security for Microsoft.”I suppose that would be more secure ... for them. There are the truisms that the fewer network ports you open, the less exposure you have or, the simpler the software, the more reliable and secure it should be. There is also the truism that, if it only supports a recent version of Microsoft software, that would tend to produce more fiscal security for Microsoft.

There are some relevant quotes to add here, e.g.:

Joe Wilcox in 14 June 2006:

""When you speak about interoperability do you mean across different platforms, like Windows and Unix, or among different versions of Windows, like XP and 2000." He meant among different versions of Windows."

[Editor's note: This isn't a rare situation. Only about a year ago, Microsoft published articles that speak about "cross-platform" where platforms only include Windows, Windows mobile, and XBox. This is yet another case and also an excellent examples where one is creating confusion. It's almost akin to calling software "open source" when it strictly requires Windows, Sharepoint and other proprietary products merely to be runnable.]

Brad Chase (of Microsoft) once wrote:

"We will bind the shell to the Internet Explorer, so that running any other browser is a jolting experience."

[Editor's note: Yesterday, Slashdot had an item/article about almost the very same issue. Firefox being pushed out of some companies by Internet Explorer-only Web-based software.]

That's not surprising at all. Exchange itself has two Web interface modes: basic and enhanced. "basic" mode is available under all browsers, but "enhanced" is only available under Internet Explorer. Our Exchange upgrade broke "basic" mode while "enhanced" mode continued to work.

Fortunately, in our environment, we do care about interoperability with browsers like Firefox. We're a university, not a corporation, so the attitude here is that "we can't dictate the software our users prefer to use, so we take pains to support reasonably common software." So this upgrade problem will cause the Windows guys to spend some more time on the upgrade and recall the consultant they retained until the non-Microsoft browsers work again.

The problem is generic enough with ample supporting material.

Recent Techrights' Posts

On Wednesday IBM Announces 'Results' (Partial; Bad Parts Offloaded Later) and Red Hat Has Layoffs Anniversary
There's still expectation that Red Hat will make more staff cuts
 
List of Debian Suicides & Accidents
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Jens Schmalzing & Debian: rooftop fall, inaccurately described as accident
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
[Teaser] EPO Leaks About EPO Leaks
Yo dawg!
IBM: We Are No Longer Pro-Nazi (Not Anymore)
Historically, IBM has had a nazi problem
Bad faith: attacking a volunteer at a time of grief, disrespect for the sanctity of human life
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Bad faith: how many Debian Developers really committed suicide?
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Sunday, April 21, 2024
IRC logs for Sunday, April 21, 2024
A History of Frivolous Filings and Heavy Drug Use
So the militant was psychotic due to copious amounts of marijuana
Bad faith: suicide, stigma and tarnishing
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
UDRP Legitimate interests: EU whistleblower directive, workplace health & safety concerns
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Links 21/04/2024: Earth Day Coming, Day of Rest, Excess Deaths Hidden by Manipulation
Links for the day
Bad faith: no communication before opening WIPO UDRP case
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Bad faith: real origins of harassment and evidence
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Links 21/04/2024: Censorship Abundant, More Decisions to Quit Social Control Media
Links for the day
Bad faith: Debian Community domain used for harassment after WIPO seizure
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
If Red Hat/IBM Was a Restaurant...
Two hours ago in thelayoff.com
Why We Republish Articles From Debian Disguised.Work (Formerly Debian.Community)
articles at disguised.work aren't easy to find
Google: We Run and Fund Diversity Programs, Please Ignore How Our Own Staff Behaves
censorship is done by the recipients of the grants
Paul Tagliamonte & Debian Outreachy OPW dating
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Disguised.Work unmasked, Debian-private fresh leaks
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
[Meme] Fake European Patents Helped Fund the War on Ukraine
The European Patent Office (EPO) does not serve the interests of Europe
European Patent Office (EPO) Has Serious Safety Issues, This New Report Highlights Some of Them
9-page document that was released to staff a couple of days ago
IRC Proceedings: Saturday, April 20, 2024
IRC logs for Saturday, April 20, 2024
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
Microsoft-Run FUD Machine Wants Nobody to Pay Attention to Microsoft Getting Cracked All the Time
Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt (FUD) is the business model of "modern" media
Torvalds Fed Up With "AI" Passing Fad, Calls It "Autocorrect on Steroids."
and Microsoft pretends that it is speaking for Linux
Gemini Links 21/04/2024: Minecraft Ruined
Links for the day
Links 20/04/2024: Apple is Censoring China’s App Store for the Communist Party of China
Links for the day
Links 20/04/2024: Accessibility in Gemini and Focus Time
Links for the day
Congratulations to Debian Project Leader (DPL) Andreas Tille
It would not be insincere to say that Debian has issues and those issues need to be tackled, eventually
20 April: Hitler's Birthday, Debian Project Leader Election Results
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
September 11: Axel Beckert (ETH Zurich) attacks American freedoms
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
20,000 victims of unauthorized Swiss legal insurance scheme
Reprinted with permission from Daniel Pocock
Matthew Garrett, Cambridge & Debian: female colleague was afraid
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
David Graeber, village wives & Debian Outreachy internships
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Neil McGovern & Ruby Central part ways
Reprinted with permission from disguised.work
Links 20/04/2024: Chinese Diplomacy and 'Dangerous New Course on BGP Security'
Links for the day
Over at Tux Machines...
GNU/Linux news for the past day
IRC Proceedings: Friday, April 19, 2024
IRC logs for Friday, April 19, 2024
The Latest Wave of Microsoft Crime, Bribes, and Fraud
Microsoft is still an evil, highly corrupt company