Microsoft Outlook Web Access (OWA) provides rich, Web-based email access from any computer that's connected to the Internet. However, OWA stumbles a bit when it comes to attachment handling; for example, an opened attachment stays in the client computer's file cache even after OWA is closed, which is a security concern. Also, additional software must be installed on each OWA client computer for users to open the attachments. Messageware's AttachView for OWA 2003 seamlessly integrates with your Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 or Exchange 2000 Server infrastructure to solve these problems.

AttachView converts attachment files into HTML on the server, then delivers the files in a separate noncacheable browser window to clients, so attachments aren't saved to client computers and no extra software is needed to open the files. AttachView installs quickly on Exchange front-end servers and supports hundreds of file formats. The AttachView viewer lets you rotate or zoom graphical documents. AttachView also dynamically builds a hyperlinked Table of Contents, as Web Figure 1 shows (http://www.windowsitpro.com, InstantDoc ID 46279), to let you easily switch between worksheets in a Microsoft Visio document or pages in a PDF, for example. You can even view documents that are compressed in a .zip file. The HTML conversion isn't always perfect. For example, the formatting between a Microsoft Word document and the AttachView HTML version differed slightly. But all of the content, including graphics and most formatting, was successfully delivered. If you need the original document, you can always explicitly open or save the file by using OWA-integrated AttachView menus, assuming the administrator permits these actions.

Configuring the server is straightforward using the AttachView administrative console. Customizable policies let you set up different attachment-handling behaviors based on the OWA client IP address or let you define a list of banned file types that users can't open, attach to an email message, or save from an email message. AttachView works with any attachment in OWA, including those from calendaring, notes, tasks, and contacts. If your company runs OWA, you should seriously consider purchasing AttachView.



AttachView for OWA 2003
Contact: Messageware * 905-812-0638
Web: http://www.messageware.com
Price: Pricing is based on number of mailboxes and starts at $495 for 1-25 mailboxes
Summary
Pros: Integrates seamlessly with Outlook Web Access to provide secure viewing and handling of any email attachment
Cons: The HTML conversion of a few documents didn't identically match the originals
Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Recommendation: AttachView provides much-needed email-attachment security and management features that are missing from OWA and deserves serious consideration from any company running OWA.