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Thread: Open source VS network edition differences

  1. #1
    batfastad is offline Elite Member
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    Question Open source VS network edition differences

    Hi everyone

    We have an NE starter pack license which is due for renewal in the next couple of weeks. We only need 12 users so it didn't make sense going for a full license and we don't use ActiveSync or Blackberry sync to mobile devices. We don't have multiple domains in Zimbra. We forward other domains/addresses to our zimbra mailboxes. And there's only a single administrator account on the server.

    So I started looking into possible switching to the open source edition. It seems that in the UK we can no longer buy our license direct from Zimbra. So I was contacted by a UK-based VMWare reseller but their quotation was almost double what we paid last year, even when excluding VAT. Mainly because paying in GBP is so much more expensive than USD.

    The only differences between the open source and network editions that may affect us are...
    - no online backup/restore
    - no outlook connector

    I've never actually got the Outlook connector working in a satisfactory manner. All our mailboxes are >5GB with some >20GB and I never got it to synchronise that amount of mail. Even just having headers stored in the offline .zdb performance was still poor when some users have up to 50,000 messages in various folders/inboxes.
    It's a real shame as Outlook connecting to Exchange with RPC over HTTPS seemed to handle these mailbox sizes pretty well.
    But with Exchange we couldn't have write access to public folders over IMAP which is why we had to migrate.

    Lack of online full/incremental backups in the open source edition is a real negative. Though I wish it was easier to run a command to output the status of only backup operations currently in progress, rather than using zmbackupquery --from "DateTime" as you have to guess the date/time from when a backup may have started.

    However my main question is about a feature called "Advanced search and file indexing for large inboxes"
    It's listed on the comparison chart here... Zimbra - Compare Products
    Anyone know what that actually is?
    I think we currently have attachment indexing disabled anyway but not being able to do advanced searches from Zimbra would be a real problem.
    With the open-source edition do you not have access to the advanced search functionality?

    Anyone got any comments on what that feature actually is?

    Cheers, B
    My Zimbra Bugs Wishlist: 16411, 24567, 35676, 36430, 37770, 41872, 43733, 44384, 46383, 47759
    And a way to associate mailto: handlers with a Zimbra Prism webapp

  2. #2
    Krishopper is offline Dedicated Member
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    The Network Edition will index and allow you to search the contents of attachments (like word doc's and pdf's). The open source edition does not provide this.

    NE will also allow to view attachments like that as HTML, and the OS edition will not.
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  3. #3
    xeon is offline Advanced Member
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    I just want to say that I have about 8 mailbox's over 10GB but under 20GB with Outlook connector and they work fine. I bet they will be over 20GB in a year. No issues. However all those machines have SSD hard drives and we use Outlook 2007 SP2. It takes a long time to initially sync but works fine. If its not syncing fully you might have an issue with attachment sizes... They all came from a hosted Exchange 2007 and same version of Outlook. I have only had comments of how much faster the emails send now... No complaints about client speed. All my users have Windows Search enabled and indexing Zimbra mail.

  4. #4
    dave_kempe is offline Partner (VAR/HSP)
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    As for pricing, I hope Zimbra and Vmware can sort something out. I don't think price increases in any area are a good idea given the state of the market.
    Zimbra needs to remain alot cheaper than exchange to be competitive.
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  5. #5
    batfastad is offline Elite Member
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    Question

    Quote Originally Posted by Krishopper View Post
    The Network Edition will index and allow you to search the contents of attachments (like word doc's and pdf's). The open source edition does not provide this.

    NE will also allow to view attachments like that as HTML, and the OS edition will not.
    Ok so that's all that it means... that you can search through the contents of attachments?
    The wording on that comparison page "Advanced search and file indexing for large inboxes" to me suggests that the "Advanced Search" button of zimbra may be disabled for large mailboxes.
    I've had attachment indexing and viewing attachments as HTML disabled since we started using Zimbra. It was annoying having large address lists and other attachments constantly matching pretty much any searches. So that feature's not too much of a concern to us.

    It seems like the only deal-breaker is online and incremental backup.
    Is that worth £350? It probably is actually. From reading up on the open source version the primary backup method seems to be shutting down Zimbra and copying the /opt/zimbra directory.

    Quote Originally Posted by xeon View Post
    I just want to say that I have about 8 mailbox's over 10GB but under 20GB with Outlook connector and they work fine. I bet they will be over 20GB in a year. No issues. However all those machines have SSD hard drives and we use Outlook 2007 SP2. It takes a long time to initially sync but works fine. If its not syncing fully you might have an issue with attachment sizes... They all came from a hosted Exchange 2007 and same version of Outlook. I have only had comments of how much faster the emails send now... No complaints about client speed. All my users have Windows Search enabled and indexing Zimbra mail.
    Wow that's impressive. Maybe it's just the spec of our client machines - they're 3-4 years old but Win XP, Office XP, Photoshop/Illustrator/Acrobat CS1 seems to fly.
    It was only a problem when re-synching Outlook the following morning after a user had done some work from the AJAX UI overnight. Maybe it's worth another try with a more recent version of Outlook... we were running Outlook 2003.
    SSDs probably make a big difference though, lots of small I/O operations is the main benefit of SSDs.

    How large is the .zdb file on these client machines?
    I found the Outlook connector almost unusable when the zdb was over 4-5GB in size. So recommended that users run the Web UI in a Prism window instead. Most seem to be happy with this. Though it would be great to be able to associate a mailto: handler with a Prism webapp.

    I actually requested this feature enhancement to improve the Outlook connector Bug 47759 – Limit .zdb size by specifying downloaded mail size limit and downloaded mail days limit and sort of related to this Bug 12790 – SYNC: ZCO should have option for what to synchronize with zimbra (mail / calendar(s) / address lists) as I thought it would be brilliant to limit the zdb to a certain size and the Outlook connector works out how much offline mail it can actually store. Then the rest is just headers-only. Though it would probably mean quite frequent compacting which could take time.

    Quote Originally Posted by dave_kempe View Post
    As for pricing, I hope Zimbra and Vmware can sort something out. I don't think price increases in any area are a good idea given the state of the market.
    Zimbra needs to remain alot cheaper than exchange to be competitive.
    It wasn't a price increase by Zimbra as such. But letting us only purchase in GBP with a reseller markup, certainly seems to have made it more expensive than last year.
    Still much cheaper for us to buy an on-site license than going for a hosted option. Especially when you see how cheap mail storage can be with Google Apps etc. With the amount of mail we have it would have cost more than £300 per month for hosted Zimbra
    A hosted option would be fine for people with only 1GB of mail but another reason we moved from Exchange was we were constantly hitting storage limits and having to delete mail older than 365 days. Now we have a 1000+ day retention and users are much happier

    Cheers, B
    Last edited by batfastad; 04-12-2011 at 01:50 AM.
    My Zimbra Bugs Wishlist: 16411, 24567, 35676, 36430, 37770, 41872, 43733, 44384, 46383, 47759
    And a way to associate mailto: handlers with a Zimbra Prism webapp

  6. #6
    xeon is offline Advanced Member
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    The ZDBs usually match close to the mailbox size. So for example a 10GB mailbox had about a 10.5GB ZDB file. Outlook 2007 and above have a huge database file performance compared to 2003 and below. Outlook 2003 is outdated and should not be used with any mailbox over 2GB from my experience. However it will work, just expect slow performance and local cache file corruption. The SSD upgrade was a huge improvement for my users. Instead of buying new PCs (these are all 2-4 years old as well) we choose to upgrade to SSD and at least 2GB RAM with fresh installs of Windows XP SP3. I have one user with over 100,000 messages in a 13GB mailbox and have not heard a peep out of him since I migrated him over from our old hosted Exchange provider.

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