In a surprising move, Microsoft and Linux distributor Xandros announced on Aug. 15 a messaging protocol license and collaboration agreement that will allow Scalix e-mail servers interoperability with Microsoft mobile- and PC-based e-mail applications.
In the deal, Xandros has licensing for the Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync protocol and the Outlook Exchange Transport Protocol. Using these Scalix Mail Servers can now synchronize data over wireless networks with Microsoft Exchange Server as well as various e-mail clients, such as Outlook, that use these and other Microsoft protocols.
The companies stated that by both companies commitment to protocol licensing and technical cooperation, Xandros and Microsoft are demonstrating how protocol-level collaboration can benefit customers who rely on a mix of Windows-based and Linux-based systems.
The agreement is focused on two areas of protocol licensing. In the first, Xandros will be given the specification and documentation license necessary to develop a server-side implementation of the Exchange ActiveSync protocol. Such implementation would provide organizations with the ability to enable mobile, "over-the-air" access to e-mail messages, calendars, contacts, tasks lists and other mailbox data.
In the other area, Xandros will be given the specification and documentation license necessary to develop a server-side implementation of the Outlook-Exchange Transport Protocol 2007. Such an implementation will provide organization with better mediation options between client applications and the Scalix Mail Server.
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This deal follows on the heels of Microsoft and Xandros collaboration and patent partnership. Xandros, perhaps best known for its Windows-user friendly Linux desktop distribution, Xandros Desktop, has recently started making serious moves towards becoming a Linux server power.
In July, Xandros acquired Scalix, a well-known, open-source e-mail server. Before that, Xandros announced that it was partnering with NoMachine, maker of NX virtualization desktop, remote access and server management software, it would be bundling NoMachines NX Enterprise Server with Xandros Server 2.0.
"The expansion of our agreement with Xandros is a strong example of how collaboration through intellectual property licensing can foster innovation that benefits the overall IT ecosystem," said Horacio Gutierrez, Microsofts vice president of intellectual property and licensing, in a statement.
"Todays enterprise users on the go employ a plethora of mobile messaging devices to access a mix of Linux- and Windows-based messaging systems," said Andreas Typaldos, CEO of Xandros, in a statement. "With the ubiquity of Windows Mobile-based Smartphones, this agreement will enable us to provide the same range of Scalix connectivity choices for users of desktop, laptop and handheld devices that they currently enjoy with Microsoft Exchange. With this new Scalix interoperability, Microsoft and Xandros enable companies to freely implement a broad range of proprietary and open systems and devices."
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