Exchange and Outlook UPDATE, Outlook Edition--brought to you by Exchange & Outlook Administrator, the print newsletter with practical advice, how-to articles, tips, and techniques to help you do your job today. http://www.exchangeadmin.com
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May 13, 2003--In this issue:
1. COMMENTARY - News from the Antispam Front
2. ANNOUNCEMENT - Cast Your Vote in Our Annual Readers' Choice Awards!
3. HOT RELEASE - Hewlett-Packard
4. RESOURCE - Tip: Dealing with the Web Toolbar
5. NEW AND IMPROVED - Improve Exchange and Outlook Central Management
6. CONTACT US See this section for a list of ways to contact us.
* NEWS FROM THE ANTISPAM FRONT
The antispam fight might be heating up but not necessarily in the way you might expect. The most recent hot issue is who owns the technology used to fight junk email.
Email provider Mailblocks ( http://www.mailblocks.com ) has filed several suits claiming infringement of two patents that Mailblocks owns for a challenge-response approach to spam blocking. In this method, only messages from senders on an approved list get through to the recipient. If a message arrives from someone else, the mail server sends a message to the sender asking for confirmation. After the sender confirms the message, the server adds the sender's address to the recipient's list of approved senders. The technique effectively blocks automated mass mail transmissions because the "challenge" message includes instructions that only a human can follow and respond to.
Mailblocks filed a complaint last week in the US District Court for the Central District of California against EarthLink after EarthLink announced that it would soon implement a challenge-response antispam system. Mailblocks has also filed suit against Spam Arrest, which provides an email sender-verification service and a sender-verification server product; DigiPortal Software, developer of ChoiceMail One email software; and MailFrontier, maker of the Matador antispam add-on for Outlook. All three companies incorporate a sender-confirmation mechanism in their antispam strategies. According to Mailblocks Director of Business Strategies Ryan Keating, Mailblocks is in negotiations with the latter two firms.
Communicating about spam presents some interesting challenges, by the way. If I tried to present examples of spam in this Commentary–-examples that include words that describe particular treatments that promise life-changing results or techniques that can guarantee your income-–this newsletter probably wouldn't get past your spam filter. I can just imagine how tough it must be to tune a spam filter at a pharmaceutical company.
Compared with communicating about spam, defining spam might be easier than you think. A recent poll by Public Opinion Strategies found that 93 percent of business email users classify as spam any unsolicited mass mail that is deceptive in its subject line and hides the sender or seeks to commit fraud. The respondents were a little less definite about whether mass mailings in general constitute spam. For 82 percent, any unsolicited mass mail, even from legitimate businesses or companies with familiar brands, was spam; 54 percent said mass mail from companies they'd done business with wasn't spam.
EarthLink's $16.4 million victory in an antispam case in US federal court last week involved mass mail that fell into the fraud-related category. In its case against Howard Carmack, EarthLink contended that Carmack and others used identities stolen from credit cards and other sources to open Internet accounts, then used the fake email addresses to send spam.
Suits involving spam issues can work both ways, though. E-marketers are fighting for the right to mass mail. The SpamCon Foundation ( http://www.spamcon.org ), which supports measures "to reduce the amount of unsolicited email that crosses private networks, while ensuring that valid email reaches its destination" announced last week that it has created a legal fund to help defendants taken to court for their antispam efforts.
I'm going to be taking a bit of a breather from my UPDATE columns. For the next few weeks, my fellow Outlook MVPs Patricia Cardoza and Jessie Louise McClennan will be bringing you their viewpoints on the state of Outlook.
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* CAST YOUR VOTE IN OUR ANNUAL READERS' CHOICE AWARDS! Which companies and products are the best on the market? Tell us by nominating your favorites in the annual Windows & .NET Magazine Readers' Choice Awards survey. Click here! http://www.winnetmag.com/readerschoice
* HEWLETT-PACKARD HP OpenView for Windows Test Drive Monitor the availability and performance of your corporate website -- FREE for 30 days, using powerful HP OpenView management software for Windows. Simulate activity. Monitor complex transactions. Meet business demands. Manage web services. Click here. http://www.winnetmag.com/hptestdrive/
* TIP: DEALING WITH THE WEB TOOLBAR
Q: Below the standard Outlook 2002 toolbar, I see a toolbar that contains icons for back and forward Web functions and a URL field. Can I get rid of this toolbar?
A: In addition to letting you type any Web address into the Address box and browse directly from Outlook, this dark gray bar displays the name of the current folder. If you aren't displaying the Folder List, you can click this folder name to select another folder that you want to show in the current window. When you drag any Outlook item to the folder name, the full Folder List will appear, letting you choose a folder in which to drop the item.
You can use this bar's back and forward buttons not only to navigate Web pages that you recently accessed through Outlook but also to browse through Outlook folders that you recently viewed. If your mouse or keyboard has back and forward buttons, you can also use them to page through recently viewed Outlook folders.
You won't find this bar in the list of Outlook toolbars that you can enable and disable, so you can't get rid of it. If you find the Web controls distracting, you can drag the vertical bar to the right to hide the Web-specific controls.
Microsoft is eliminating this bar in Outlook 2003, along with the ability to browse Web pages in Outlook.
See the Exchange & Outlook Administrator Web site for more great tips from Sue Mosher. http://www.exchangeadmin.com
* IMPROVE EXCHANGE AND OUTLOOK CENTRAL MANAGEMENT Symprex released ExCentre, a suite of central-management tools for Exchange Server and Outlook that comprises Folder Permissions Manager, AutoArchive Manager, Mailbox Manager, and Out-of-Office Manager. Folder Permissions Manager manages permissions on mailbox and public folders. AutoArchive Manager deals with mailbox folders' autoarchive settings. Mailbox Manager manages mailboxes' account information. Out-of-Office Manager manages mailbox folders' out-of-office information. Folder Permissions Manager, Mailbox Manager, and Out-of-Office Manager are licensed per user and start at $545, $435, and $285, respectively, for a single-user license. AutoArchive Manager is licensed per managed mailbox and starts at $645 for a 100-mailbox license. Contact Symprex at [email protected] http://www.symprex.com
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