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Obsidian Communication Server


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Once in a while there comes along a program or application that changes how you look at the world, or related issues. I can say without a doubt that the OCS web intranet system by Obsidian Systems had that effect on me.

The system uses cgi on the server side, but a standard web browser on the client side. Now that may sound like any other CGI script that you have heard of, or seen. Don't be fooled. This "little" Intranet server has user authentication, e-mail, calendar and scheduling support and a host of other feature which will be described in more detail below.

The OCS system is divided into section as follows:

  • OCSadmin - system administration for the OCS intranet server
  • OCSemail - intranet electronic mail made easy. Similar to hotmail, but now available for you LAN.
  • OCScal - intranet Calendar and Scheduler.
  • OCSfax - intranet fax software for the paper less office - under development
  • OCSexplorer - remote file management via a web browser - under development
  • OCS-base - the base module, includes a company notice board and the base libraries for the other applications

OCSadmin - system administration for the OCS intranet server

Ocsadmin is a web front-end to maintaining users and groups on a Linux based OCS server, but can also be used in general to maintain a Linux machine. This makes it easy for a systems administrator to make changes to a system without having to use encryption software for connection to the server ( which the system might not have or correctly setup ), or if the case may be not near a Unix system with the tools needed for system administration.

Authentication security is however dependent on the security of your web-server stream. SSL would be needed for RSA type encryption of data flow between the web browser and Web server.

OCSemail - intranet electronic mail made easy. Similar to hotmail, but now available for you LAN.

Ocsemail is a web front-end to pine, not based on hotmail but similar in function If you have a web browser on a client you now have email installed. This makes the need to install or setup accounts on other machine to access your mail unnessasary. Very handy if you are out of the country and need to access new mail, but even more handy to access mail received before departing.

The interface has every feature you would want in a mailing system. New e-mail has cc and bcc support ( unfortunately only can be chosen ), access to your address-book ( not working 100%, but they are working on it ) as well as attachments.

Setting up the e-mail client is also an option with Full name, header information, reply to and view e-mail as html options.

OCScal - intranet Calendar and Scheduler.

Ocscal is an intranet calendar application that allows you to interact with your client database and book appointments for your small company. Once again portability is the highlight here. You can keep track of who's looking for you or what you need to do from remote sites. There is also a shared contact database which links your scheduler and e-mail.There is also the option to send SMS to your cellular phone to remind you of meetings.

OCSfax - intranet fax software for the paper less office - under development

Ocsfax is a web front-end to view incoming faxes, distribute it to users, and to view queued faxes. It will be able to accept faxes sent to the Samoa fax queue and provide means to send these faxes out to people listed in the databases.

Needless to say you can once again be anywhere in the world and still get the fax right. Once a fax is received the fax is send to the relevant users. Obsidian is currently working on a system to send out faxes from anywhere in the world. some other little thing to look out for soon is:

  • Small thumbnails on the fly of multipart faxes
  • Replying to the fax via fax (i.e fill in some text into the fax) The plan is to click on the fax (using the fax as a large image map), provide text to place at the area clicked and thus completing the form... This IS possible with cgi - watch this space.

OCSexplorer - remote file management via a web browser - under development

Ocsexplorer is a intranet file explorer for your Linux machine that can be used for copying, deleting, editing, viewing, moving, up- and downloading of files between your hopefully non-crippled workstation and Linux machines. the interface is clean and easy to use.

OCS-base - the base module, includes a company notice board and the base libraries for the other applications

Well .. the header pretty much says it all .. the notice board is a nice little addition though. you can leave little memo's to all that enter the Intranet.


Well .. that is a brief look at the different part of the Obsidian Communication Server Intranet Web Interface. This system is designed to make live a lot easer for system administrators and users. Being able to make changes to e-mail scheduling and your filesystem remotely without the need of installing additional software on the client side is a big bonus! Two thumbs up to the guy's at Obsidian Systems

  • Application name
  • Obsidian Communication Server
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    Here are Some Screen shots
    ocs Screen 1 ocs Screen 2
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