OpenFire and Webhuddle

MouseJust tested out some open source applications that will help me be able to work remotely effectively. I used one of the Linux boxes we have here in the office to host the applications.

OpenFire
OpenFire is an open source IM server written in Java. It uses the XMPP protocol which is more popularly know as Jabber. It was one of the easiest to install and well documented open source applications I’ve ever encountered. The backend admin I believe is where OpenFire excels. It is very user friendly and has a myriad of logging options, an interface for installing plugins and all the usual stuff like user administration, server administration, etc.

With OpenFire, you can also use Spark which is a cross-platform IM client created by the same folks at Ignite Realtime. I was very happy with this combination, and now we have a secure IM system all located in our very own data center.

Web Huddle
Another open source application I installed recently is Web Huddle. If you’re familiar with GotoMeeting or Webex then Web Huddle does most of what these applications were meant for, the only difference is Web Huddle is open source and is free to install and use.

Documentation is not one of Web Huddle’s strong points and I had some difficulty installing the application. Web Huddle was created also in Java but as a deployment for a JBoss server. Currently, it only supports JBoss 3.2. After, I got over the installation difficulties, Web Huddle turned out to be a really nifty tool. The web meetings that I initiated with 2-3 persons were all smooth and the attendees were all able to connect in smoothly (provided they have Java installed). I wasn’t able to test out the voice functionality as I’ll save that for a later date.

I really was amazed once again at the quality and usability of open source applications out there. Thanks to the people who make the open source community what it is today.

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