Monday, June 11, 2007

The knight in shining armor

Writing nice things about your own product is bad manners. Linking someone else is pretty much the same, but you can always say "he said that, not me" and "I do not know the guy at all, I never met him and I did not pay him!".

Today, I was forwarded this post of someone I swear I do not know, never met and definitely did not pay...

Finally, Funambol
Several weeks ago, I got a Motorola Q–a very nice Windows Mobile based smartphone. I went back to Google and my “knight in shining armor,” Funambol, appeared (formerly Sync4j). As a commercial product with almost everything open source, I got an enterprise solution for free. First step was downloading and installing the server–which I put on my Ubuntu server. After 20 minutes of that and configuring my firewall, I was onto getting plugins. I installed one into Thunderbird that syncs Lightning and my contacts. I installed one on my new Motorola Q, one in my old PDA, and one in Outlook for good measure. The plugins have nice integration into Thunderbird, Outlook, and Windows Mobile, while not using Activesync. One awesome benefit is that I can now sync through the internet–no more USB cable. It just works.

The Winner
Funambol, in my mind, is the clear winner of syncing solutions. Cross-platform, open source, free, nice UI, remote syncing, and solid performance. There are plugins for Blackberry, Palm, Evolution, SugarCRM, Exchange, LDAP, iPod, and quite a few others. I now have my calendar and contacts synced on multiple computers and smart devices. I am happy since I am free of Windows and getting the most out of my smartphone.

Wow, I feel I should meet this person, know him/her and offer him/her at least a beer (so that s/he won't be able to write about us anymore ;-)