About FileMaker And IMAP

From Dwayne Wright - Certified FileMaker 9 Developer
WEB: www.dwaynewright.com
EMAIL: info@dwaynewright.com
TWITTER: dwaynewright

FORWARD
I’ve gotten by with minimal new knowledge about FileMaker and Email since I wrote an article in FileMaker Advisor about it back in 2002. So this is a series of articles on my challenge to get more up to speed with the current landscape.

ABOUT FILEMAKER AND IMAP
So a customer was asking me about integrating email with FileMaker and we had discussed the mail.it plug in. About six months later, they asked me which would be the better setup, IMAP or Exchange. Told them I would research this a bit and get back to them. It turns out, this POP3, IMAP and Exchange stuff kinda matters when you are talking about FileMaker integration. Kinda funny, hugh? Seriously, I hadn’t paid any attention to this and so ... I’ve listed what I could of the resources I looked at to form my knowledge center.

It looks like mail.it is not going to be compatible with IMAP or Exchange. It requires a POP3 account and that means the email is downloaded from the server. From what I understand, IMAP doesn’t work that way. It is more of a web based experience in which no emails are stored on the clients machine. I already know my client has a thing about Blackberry access to data, so I guess I got to research IMAP as it applies to FileMaker projects.

So I decided to do a google search for FileMaker AND IMAP in the search terms and see what comes up. On the first page, I see a listing for 360Works. I got to meet Jesse Barnum last year, he actually came up to Seattle for a FMPUG event here. He hung out all day at the SolutionMakers office (my previous employer), chatted with us, had lunch and then did the traditional FileMaker geek speak for most the afternoon. Seems like a great guy with a bit of genius tossed in for good measure. So I focused down to their FileMaker Email PlugIn product link.

360 WORKS EMAIL PLUG-IN
You know that Tom Cruise sappy movie “Jerry Maguire” and when Rene Zellwinger does that even more sappy “You had me at hello” quote? The first listed advantage of the 360Works Email Plugin is ... “Works With Instant Web Publishing” and I mutter under my breath ... “well hello sailor”. It doesn’t hurt either when I can clearly see the lasted listed advantage is “Retrieve email from POP/IMAP mailboxes” and so we are off to check out the price tag.

ABOUT THE 360 WORKS PRICE TAG
So they have two pricing levels of interest to me. The first would fit my client needs just nicely and it is currently $195. It does have a 10 user limit but that works for them as well. The second level of pricing would apply if I want to roll in this plug-in with my InBizness product. At least, I think that is the case. This also has the 10 user limit and that got me thinking how someone would manage that.

Even in a large workgroup, is quite possible that your heavy FileMaker / Email users will be less than 10. It is equally possible these same user may share a business role like a manager level. So that could mean you could use a privilege set and/or extended privilege to help manage the authorized users for IMAP capabilities.

IN SUMMARY
I’m going to pitch the 360Works Email Plugin to my client and tell them we are going to use IMAP. If I get a chance next week, I’ll download and work with their demo. I’ll try to do a follow up post on what happens after the client gives me the go ahead.

RELATED RESEARCH LINKS
Here are some of the links I read on the internet while I researched this topic.
http://searchexchange.techtarget.com/sDefinition/0,,sid43_gci214022,00.html
http://www.360works.com/email-plugin/
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More info about the author and FileMaker in general, contact me at info@dwaynewright.com.

© 2008 - Dwayne Wright - dwaynewright.com

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