by Mark H. Anbinder, News Editor <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Director of Technical Services, Baka Industries Inc.
Last month, CE Software, Inc. announced its plans to ship QuickMail 3.0 in August. The major revision to the company's popular LAN-based electronic mail software includes long-demanded features such as text searching and spell checking, as well as new capabilities including automated mail processing. Recently, the company added news of two QM-related products, QM-Postman and ARA-Link QM.
In QuickMail 2.6, CE primarily enhanced server functionality, but version 3.0 enhances the client software and functionality. Some of the improvements bring QuickMail more in line with competing products, or answer users' long-standing demands, but other enhancements are unusual in LAN-based mail systems.
CE has always pointed to text searching as one of QuickMail's most-requested features. The inability to look for a message based on sender or message content, other than by laboriously scanning mail folders by hand, has long been a major drawback of QuickMail's folder-oriented storage system. Searches in QuickMail 3.0 can be based on sender, recipient, subject, priority, and date, or users can search within the message text itself. This last function applies to searches throughout the user's mail folders, or allows the user to find specific words within a single message.
Another long-awaited capability incorporated into QuickMail 3.0 is a spell checker. CE worked with InfoSoft (formerly part of Houghton Mifflin) to add spell-checking functionality. QuickMail 3.0 will include a U.S. English dictionary and the ability to create a custom dictionary, and foreign language dictionaries will be available. (We suspect localized copies of QuickMail distributed outside of the U.S. will include a standard dictionary in the appropriate language.)
Handy as we think those features will be, the MailManager seems to be the best reason to upgrade to QuickMail 3.0 once it's available. This feature enables users to specify how they would like their mail handled, and QuickMail will automatically reply, forward, file, print, or delete mail according to the user's wishes, based on sender, recipient, subject, priority, date, or information within the body of the message.
The MailManager is not unique in the world of electronic mail, but its functionality isn't commonly available in workgroup-oriented, LAN-based mail products. The feature is rules-based, but unlike some such systems, doesn't require users to have programming talent, according to CE. Ford Goodman, CE Software president and CEO, noted that the company had "put its user interface expertise to work and created a powerful mail management tool that anyone can use."
As an example, if you use QuickMail and plan to be away from your mailbox for a day, you could set QuickMail to reply automatically, but only to certain senders, explaining how to get in touch. Mail from other senders could be ignored until the you return, or urgent messages could be forwarded to another recipient.
QuickMail 3.0 also increases the maximum number of messages that may be filed within a personal mail folder (stored on the user's local hard drive, instead of on the server) from 100 to 250. The software supports up to 250 personal folders.
The company also added its popular auto-launch feature to the Windows version of the QuickMail client software. This feature allows users to launch the appropriate application to view a given enclosed file, direct from within QuickMail.
CE Software says QuickMail owners in the U.S. and Canada will be able to upgrade for $12 per user, which includes shipping, a complete set of disks, a user manual, and reference cards. Customers who purchased QuickMail 2.6 after 13-Jun-94 will be entitled to a free upgrade. International users should contact their local distributors for pricing and availability.
QM-Postman, a QuickMail add-on product priced at $99 per server, will provide automated mail distribution list capability. Mass mailing lists can be created manually, or can be automatically generated based on information in QuickMail's NameServer database.
ARA-Link QM, at $29 for one user, $99 for five users, and $199 for ten users, eliminates the need for users to connect to their network using ARA (Apple Remote Access) before opening QuickMail. This software automatically makes and breaks ARA connections when a user enters or leaves the QuickMail software. Site licenses are available.
CE Software, Inc. -- 800/523-7638 -- 515/224-1995
-- Information from:
CE Software propaganda