Middleware Documentation deprecated

Welcome to the documentation about the inner workings of the Java-based middleware platform of OX App Suite. This technical documentation covers articles about different topics and features, grouped by different subtopics on the left.

New and Noteworthy in 7.10.6

The following gives an overview about some of the more noteworthy changes introduced in this release.

Deputy / On-Behalf Management

With the new release, a sophisticated deputy management is introduced, beyond the currently available folder-based sharing possibilities. Instead of sharing distinct folders explicitly, a user can now select one or more other users as deputies with configurable access to his/her primary mail account's Inbox and/or standard Calendar folder. Moreover, a deputy might get the "send on behalf of" permission granted, which allows him to send E-Mails on behalf of the granting user. Within the calendar, the possibilities to perform scheduling operations on behalf of another user were improved, too.

The ability to grant deputy permissions is disabled by default. Further information is provided at Deputy Permissions.

Upgrade to Hazelcast 5

The internally used Hazelcast library is upgraded to v5.0, which means that during a rolling upgrade, a separate cluster of nodes will be formed consisting of the already upgraded nodes. As a consequence, volatile data like user sessions being held in the distributed session storage won't be migrated, requiring end users to re-login after the update (unless managed by an external SSO-system). In contrast to the previous upgrade that came with v7.10.5, no different incoming port needs to be picked, so that the current settings regarding (automatic) port offset can remain as-is when upgrading from this version. However, in case a rolling upgrade from a previous version is attempted, this still needs to be considered.

Also, please obey the general recommendations when performing a cluster upgrade with breaking Hazelcast upgrade.

New LDAP Addressbook Plugin

In enterprise installations, there is often a central directory service that hosts the user data or other addressbook related entries. The Open-Xchange Server can be configured to access such data available from LDAP directories and integrate it in terms of address book folders in the groupware. For end-users and from a client's perspective, there's basically no difference to other contact folders, so that they can access the contents from the LDAP directory in a transparent way, e.g. when looking up participants for an appointment or choosing recipients for an e-mail message.

The previously available LDAP contact storage will continue to work temporary in v7.10.6, however, it is no longer supported or available in later versions. Therefore, it is recommended to upgrade to the new contacts provider plugin.

Compared with the legacy contact storage plugin, the new provider does integrate in a native way where the addressbook folders are directly provided by the plugin itself, i.e. there is no longer a regular database folder underneath where just the actual contents are delivered by the storage plugin. Therefore, it is no longer bound to a certain database folder that is configured. Furthermore, a defined storage is also not bound to a specific context anymore, so that the same contacts provider configuration can be shared across multiple contexts of the installation (assignable to users through the config cascade).

Detailed information, as well as a guide to upgrade from the previously used LDAP contact storage plugin, can be found at Contacts Provider LDAP.

Secondary Mail Accounts

Besides the user's primary mail account and the integration of external mail accounts in App Suite, the admin now also has the ability to provision so-called "functional" mailbox accounts for users. These mailbox accounts are not bound to a specific person, instead thy're are usually accessed and used by multiple users. Typical use cases are generic email addresses like "info@example.org" or "support@example.com". In contrast to IMAP folder subscriptions from shared mailboxes, these are rather "full" mail accounts, especially, the users are also able to use these account's transport server when sending messages. Further details are available at Secondary Mail Accounts.

Cross-Context Free/Busy & Conflict Checks

Up to now, App Suite did only consider users in the same context when determining their availability for conflict checks and free/busy queries. Especially in scenarios where large organizations are distributed across different contexts, only incomplete data was available. Now, it is possible to also access the calendar data from participants in other contexts, so that their free/busy timeslots appear next to the context-internal participants.

These cross-context free/busy and conflict checks require a configured mail resolver for the installation, and then needs to be activated explicitly for the contexts where this should be possible. For further details please read on here

Automatic Processing of Scheduling Mails

In earlier versions a user independently from her role (organizer or attendee) had to actively create, update or delete appointments whenever an appointment was scheduled over iTIP/iMIP mails. In many cases only one action could be performed anyways, leading to scenarios where the user had to click one button without any other option. With the version 7.10.6 those unambiguous cases will automatically be applied to the user's calendar. The scheduling mails are automatically processed and saved as soon as they're fetched, so that new appointments, updates and cancellations, or replies from participants directly appear in the user's calendars. Doing so, the experience is much similar to meetings with context-internal participants, were changes are also reflected in all user's calendars immediately.

The feature can be configured by end users in their calendar settings in App Suite, and the default behavior can be defined by the administrator. For further details look at the iCalendar Transport-Independent Interoperability Protocol (iTIP) documentation and the server configuration

Provisioning for User Picture

It is now also possible to set, change and remove a user's personal contact picture during provisioning operations. The administrative SOAP API, as well as the respective commandline tools createuser and changeuser were extended accordingly.