Lotus has transformed the messaging strategy of its Softswitch division, to focus on SMTP rather than X.400 as the email standards of the future.
Softswitch is developing messaging products optimised for the Internet, which support SMTP and LDAP (Lightweight Directory Access Protocol). Lotus said it recognises that SMTP will supplant X.400 as the messaging standard for open systems, and its sister protocol LDAP will take over from X.500 as a directory standard.
The Softswitch project, codenamed Dragonfly, centres on a highly scalable messaging switch that will be released in the first half of next year. It supports SMTP, LDAP and, to improve routing of mail across the Internet and Intranets, MIME (Multipurpose Internet Mail Extension), Softswitch's general manager Steve Layne told analysts.
Dragonfly will offer functions that are not currently available with SMTP products, such as designating the priority of the message. It will run on Windows NT, AIX and OS/390 servers.
Other products included in the development effort are new message management and directory synchronisation facilities for SMTP. The latter will be called Directory Publisher and will bring together information from directories of multiple email systems. It will run on NT and should appear before the switch itself, in the first quarter of 1997.
Softswitch is currently beta testing the Lotus Messaging Switch for AIX, which routes email between different systems. It will ship by May next year.
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