[linux-elitists] IM servers for Linux

Larry M. Augustin lma@lmaugustin.com
Sun Jan 5 22:35:37 PST 2003


Thank you Dave.  Exactly the kind of input I was looking for.

--
Larry M. Augustin, lma@lmaugustin.com
Tel: +1.650.966.1759, Fax: +1.650.966.1753


> -----Original Message-----
> From: David L. Sifry [mailto:dsifry@dsifry.sifry.com] On Behalf Of David
> L. Sifry
> Sent: Sunday, January 05, 2003 9:17 PM
> To: lma@lmaugustin.com
> Cc: linux-elitists@zgp.org
> Subject: Re: [linux-elitists] IM servers for Linux
> 
> I'm a big fan of Jabber, and I've created a number of infrastructures
> that use it.  The upsides:
> 
> * Central control of the server, and no data leakage (you can run it
> completely behind a firewall if you like)
> 
> * SSL-encrypted connection capability
> 
> * Open protocol
> 
> * Large OSS developer community
> 
> * The O'Reilly "Programming Jabber" book.  This is the best
> documentation on Jabber, bar none, and if you're thinking about
> installing Jabber, go get this book.  See my comments below about
> documentation.
> 
> Here's the downsides:
> 
> * No decent Jabber client available for Windows or Mac OS.  Believe me,
> I've tried them all, and they all suck in one form or another.  Gabber
> is a great client for Linux, but nothing like it exists on the windows
> side.
> 
> * No guarantee of message transmission.  I'm working with the Jabber
> developers to get a heartbeat spec included in the Jabber protocol, but
> as it stands, if your client becomes disconnected (like they
> suspend-resume a a laptop), their Jabber client will ACT as if it is
> connected to the server but messages sent from it go into the ether.
> Grr.
> 
> * Poor user and administrator documentation.  Go to jabber.org and
> jabbertudio.org - the documentation is so scattered and of different
> quality, it relly plays with your head.  It is all there, but finding it
> and sifting through it is a huge pain.  The "Programming Jabber" book is
> good, but again, it is not for a windows admin.
> 
> * Dificult to set up and run for the first time.   You've gotta get
> someone to come in and set it up for you.  Hmmm, I bet there's an
> opportunity for some company to put a front-end around Jabber and sell
> pre-built boxes with an auto-setup wizard.  It is just too hard for
> normal people.
> 
> * The promise of talking to AIM, Yahoo, MSN, etc., is one that it just
> can't deliver on yet.  Well, that's mostly because of the idiots at AOL,
> Yahoo, MSN, etc., who want to keep their users locked in, but it is
> still a PITA at best to get the Jabber server to do intermediation
> between these services, and downright frustrating at worst.  Don't count
> on it if you want production-ready compatability.  But then again, you
> may not want it, for internal IM only.
> 
> All in all, Jabber just isn't ready for prime time, IMHO, and the reason
> for this failure is because of the lack of good windows/OSX clients out
> there.  People are so used to AIM, MSN, and Trillian clients (which
> include cool features like voice chat) that have a spiffy USABLE
> interface, and they get turned off by all the freeware Jabber clients
> out there.  Hmm, another funding opportunity - get someone to write a
> good windows Jabber client, and it would be killer in driving
> adoption...
> 
> Dave
> 
> On Sat, 2003-01-04 at 22:29, Larry M. Augustin wrote:
> > I think that I have an opportunity to sneak a Linux server into an
> otherwise
> > all-Windows shop.
> >
> > They currently use AIM for instant messaging.  They know this is not
> secure,
> > and want to move to something with reasonable security.  I would like to
> set
> > them up with a Linux system running an IM server.
> >
> > Requirements, roughly in order of importance:
> >
> > 	1. Security.  Some instant messages may contain confidential
> > information.
> > 	2. AIM-like UI.  They like AIM.  They are not technical.  They don't
> > want to spend a lot of time learning something new.
> > 	3. Low admin overhead.  They have one part-time sysadmin who only
> > knows Windows.  The Windows client needs to be easy and trouble free for
> > them to install.  The server has to just always work.  Basically, once I
> set
> > it up it needs to be able to run assuming virtually no sysadmin support.
> >
> > I have never setup and run an IM server.  Based on a quick survey of the
> > net, I'm thinking jabberd2, w/ gaim or exodus on the clients.  Thoughts?
> >
> > Larry
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > linux-elitists
> > http://zgp.org/mailman/listinfo/linux-elitists
> --
> David L. Sifry
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