After extensive beta testing, we are very proud that we can announce the immediate availability of Kolab.org 3.3 today. This release is the one with the most new features of all time.
In a trilogy of articles, we already presented the most exciting new features. All of these would be more than enough for one release, but we still have some new functionality in our sleeves that we have not talked about, yet.
These features include Cross-Folder-Search, a Birthday Calendar that automatically shows the birthdays of all your contacts from your address book in one neat calender. There are now dedicated Out-of-Office settings where you can specify when you are in vacation and which message should be sent under which circumstances. Never again forget to enable or disable your vacation response. Also, in the settings with the Delegation feature, you can now delegate parts of your account to somebody. This is especially useful for people with a huge workload that need help with coordinating appointments for example.
Thanks to extensive testing, issue reporting and fixing by the community this release is both on time and on par. We would like to thank the following people especially for their outstanding contributions: Daniel Hoffend, Aeneas Jaißle and Timotheus Pokorra. If you like to participate as well, there is plenty of possibilities for you.
We will highlight most of the new features below. If you are interested in more details, you are invited to check out the articles from our earlier feature trilogy:
Before you read on for the new features, you might already want to head over to the installation guide, change your repository locations and run an upgrade following the upgrade notes from our documentation.
It is now possible to add tags to email messages. They are shown prominently in the message list before the subject of your mails. In the bottom left corner, there is now a tag cloud where you can select tags, so only emails with those tags are shown to you.
Of course you can also assign colors to your tags and add new tags easily. Our new cross-folder-search feature also works for tags and allows you to show all emails from all folders that have a certain tag.
In the future, we plan on using the new tagging system for all Kolab modules, so the same tags can be used for emails, contacts, events, tasks, etc.
With Kolab.org 3.3 you will be able to work with notes right in the webclient. As with all things Kolab, you can also have multiple notebooks and share them with people.The notes are automatically synchronized with the Kolab Desktop Client and you will also be able to synchronize them to your mobile devices via the ActiveSync protocol.
Notes can be tagged just like tasks and they can have rich-text content including graphics. They can be printed right from the webclient and also sent via email. In the email view, you can add notes to emails. They are listed at the top of the email preview.
Resources are things like cars, projectors or meeting rooms that can only be used by one group of people at the same time. Kolab.org 3.3 makes it easier to manage your resources.
We added a dedicated resource selection dialog which allows you to search and browse through all the available resources. It displays additional information and attributes for the individual resources as well as an availability calendar based on the free-busy data published for the given resource.
Multiple resource of the same kind can be organized in resource collections (e.g. company cars). If someone wants to book "a car", she books the resource collection for her appointment.
Internally, all address books, calendars, task lists, etc. are folders. So far, we did not hide that fact well from users. Kolab.org 3.3 introduces a new folder navigation view that allows you to search and subscribe to shared calendars, address books, task lists etc. directly from within the respective view.
Searches are also expanded to LDAP, so that search results show folders grouped by matching users. When selecting a "folder" from the search results, your selection can be temporary and affect only the current session or permanently if you always want to see that calendar for example.
The calendar got a quickview mode which allows you to open an undistorted view on a single calendar without unchecking all other calendars from the main view.
When opening the quickview for the new "virtual user calendar", the calendar view displays events from all calendars of that user you have access to. Additionally, it also shows time blocks from anonymized free/busy information where you only know that the user is unavailable during these times.
The entire web client of Kolab.org 3.3 received plenty of improvements that will benefit people that require assistive technologies. The user interface can now be fully operated with the keyboard and has support for screen readers as well as voice output as suggested by the WCAG 2.0 Guidelines and WAI ARIA standards.
In the email view for example you are now able to tab through all the button elements, operate the message list and the popup menus. Once the message list gains focus, the arrow keys move the cursor while <space> selects the row and <enter> opens the message. A descriptive block explaining the list navigation was added to the page, so screen readers can pick it up.
Improvements in Kolab Webadmin
We enhanced the Kolab Webadmin to make it even easier to manage the most frequent administrative tasks from a pretty web interface without the need for the command line. You will of course always be able to use the command line if you prefer.
When creating a new Shared Folder, you can directly edit its ACLs giving read rights to certain users or groups for example. Creation is now also done with sane defaults, so the folder can be used immediately.
Organizational Units from LDAP can now be managed right from the Kolab Web Admin as well. Editing their LDAP access rights (ACIs) directly is also possible.