Archive for the ‘Epicenter’ Category

Epicenter FAQ – Outlook

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010

The following Frequently Asked Questions help explain how end users work with Outlook when receiving updates from Epicenter Server.

Do my users have to run Outlook for Epicenter to work?

Most users do not need to run Outlook. All update are done server-side in Microsoft Exchange and do not require involvement from the Outlook client. The only exception is if you are distributing updates via attachments, in which case the users must be running Outlook on their computer.

We use Outlook Web Access (OWA). Our users don’t use the Outlook client. Will Epicenter still work?

Yes. The only exception is if you are distributing updates via attachments, in which case the users must be running Outlook on their computer.

Is there a  way to prevent users from adding or removing contacts in the Epicenter folder?

In short, no. However, if a user deletes any contacts, Epicenter will recreate them the next time during the next update. (Note that Epicenter only updates the address book when changes are detected in the source address book.)  To force deletion of any contacts that users may have created in a folder managed by Epicenter, select the task, open the Task menu, select Strict Updates, then click Send Now.

Why are my phone numbers being changed by Epicenter?

Epicenter does not change your phone numbers, but Microsoft Outlook reformats all phone numbers to standardize them. If you are having difficulty with part of phone numbers being lost, such as international dialing prefixes, then you need to properly configure your phone number settings on the computer running Epicenter Server. Go to Control Panel / Phone and Modem Options. Edit “My location” and make sure the telephone information is correctly configured.

Why did Epicenter change my display names from First/Last to Last/First, or vice versa?

Epicenter does not reformat display names, but Microsoft Outlook reformats them to standardize them. You will see exactly the same behavior if you manually create a new contact in Outlook. This is is on our issues list and we are investigating solutions for future versions of Epicenter Server.

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Epicenter FAQ – Exchange

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010

The following Frequently Asked Questions help explain how administrators can make the best use of Epicenter Server when used with Exchange Server.

Can I select which items in the GAL get synched to the users?

In Epicenter Server, edit the task, go to the Address Book page, click the Folder button, and select the desired address list. You can create a new static or dynamic address list from the Exchange Console if you have some other subset you wish to distribute.

How can I configure Epicenter to make it easier to manage?

The preferred way to configure Epicenter is to use an Exchange dynamic address list as the source address book and an Exchange distribution list (dynamic or static) as the recipient. With this strategy, Epicenter will automatically send to new recipients who appear in the distribution list, and will automatically include contacts that appear in the address list.

What’s a dynamic address list?

A dynamic address list allows you to define an Exchange address list based on a query instead of a specific list of people. This means that if people are added to or removed from Active Directory, the address list will automatically update.

How do I create an address list in Exchange?

Please see Microsoft TechNet:

Please note that Connected Software cannot provide free support for how to use and configure Microsoft Exchange. This information is provided as a courtesy to our customers.

I use Hosted Exchange and I’m not allowed to create a new address list. What can I do instead?

Use a script for filtering. See the Downloads for Epicenter for an example of filtering by category.

I want to send just the Users in my GAL, not the Contacts. How do I do that?

Create a dynamic address list and set it as the source address book as follows: In Epicenter Server, go to the address book tab, choose Global Address List, click the Folder button, and select the new address list. Also see the next FAQ.

Why doesn’t my new Exchange address list appear in Epicenter?

Epicenter uses the Outlook Offline Address Book (OAB) to resolve names. A new address list will not appear in Outlook until Exchange has updated the OAB on the server and Outlook has downloaded it. To make the address list appear immediately, you can force the OAB to update on the Exchange server, then click Send/Receive in Outlook to download the change.

I’d like to send just part of a Public Folder. How do I filter it?

Epicenter supports using scripts for filtering. See the Downloads for Epicenter for an example of filtering by category.

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Epicenter FAQ – Licensing

Tuesday, April 6th, 2010

The following Frequently Asked Questions help explain how Epicenter Server is licensed.

How many licenses do I need?

Licensing is based on the number of mailboxes that receive updates. The number of Exchange CALs does not matter and the number of BES licenses does not matter.

Does Epicenter track how many licenses I use?

Yes. Epicenter tracks which email addresses are currently assigned a license.

If I have two tasks distributing different address books, and a user is in both lists of recipients, does it count for two licenses or just one

One license.

What happens if I accidentally exceed the license count? Does Epicenter stop working?

Epicenter will send updates to all licensed users. Unlicensed users will not receive an update. A warning message will be written to the log in Epicenter.

Can I add licenses?

Yes, please contact your sales person. Once your purchase is completed, you will be notified that your license has been updated. Go to Epicenter, open the Help menu and select Sync License. You may need to restart Epicenter for the change to take effect.

If I buy Epicenter and I do not renew after a year, does the product still works?

Yes, Epicenter will continue to work. However, you will not be entitled to upgrades or to technical support. If you choose to renew later, you’ll need to pay for all of the intervening time, or buy a new license if it’s been more than three years.

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Using Epicenter Server With Hosted Exchange

Thursday, February 25th, 2010

Outsourcing your Exchange Server to the cloud is becoming increasingly common. We do it ourselves and have been very happy with the result. Because we use Hosted Exchange internally, Epicenter Server has supported Hosted Exchange since version 5.0, released summer of 2009.

Epicenter Server sits on top of Microsoft Outlook. If Outlook works, then Epicenter will work. Epicenter Server does not require any software to be installed on the Exchange Server, so there are no issues with custom protocols, firewalls, or complicated configurations. 

The one thing that does change with Hosted Exchange is the security configuration. With Hosted Exchange, the Exchange Server is usually on a different domain than your workstations. It also means that you don’t have unrestricted administrative control of the Exchange Server. This makes it a little more difficult to set up your permissions so that Epicenter Server can open mailboxes for other users.

For a private Exchange Server, you’d run Epicenter Server under an account with “Receive-As” privileges. This is the same way that the BlackBerry Enterprise Server is configured. In our manual, we call this Technique #1. This can’t be used in a Hosted Exchange Environment.

The best strategy for Hosted Exchange, so-called “Technique #2″ in our manual, is for the administrator to configure the Exchange account used by Epicenter Server to have All-Access permission to each target mailbox. This allows all changes to be performed by your Exchange administrator, so users don’t have to be involved. Our primary hosted testing service is Sherweb. They allow end-user administrators to configure All-Access.

The final fallback, Technique #3, requires end-users to manually share their contacts folder and configure the permissions. This is done by each user from within Outlook.

So Epicenter Server works great with Exchange in the cloud, it just requires a change in how you configure the security.

Does Epicenter Server work with BIS?

Monday, January 4th, 2010

Our web page that describes how Epicenter Server can update BlackBerry devices shows how updates are distributed using BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES), but does not say anything about updates using BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS).

It’s not possible to distribute updates wirelessly through BIS, but BIS users can get updates through the USB cradle. Here’s how it works:

  • When you configure Epicenter Server, select “Attachment” updates instead of “Exchange” updates.
  • Updates will be sent via email. Users who receive updates must be running Microsoft Outlook.
  • When users receives an update, they must double click the attachment to update their local address book.
  • Finally, each user synchronizes the BB using the USB cradle.