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ITS to launch new Webmail on Aug 17
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Beginning Aug. 17, Carolina faculty, students and staff will be able to use a new-and-improved version of the University’s Webmail.

“The current version is somewhat outdated and not very user-friendly,” said Timothy McGuire, Information Technology Services (ITS) messaging systems manager. “The new version has the look and feel of a desktop client like Thunderbird or Outlook and is much more intuitive. It will provide a much better overall user experience.”

The new Webmail software, RoundCube, is open source, software in which the source code is available and may be used, copied and distributed with or without modifications. Open-source software may be offered with or without a fee, and any alterations to the software can be kept private or returned to the community for future releases.

Because it will run on existing equipment, the Webmail upgrade will not incur any capital costs to the University.

The new version received positive reviews following evaluation and testing by members of student government, ITS and other campus groups. Features include easy navigation, spell check, an improved interface, a new message pop-up screen, a find-as-you-type address book and faster performance.

Larry Conrad, vice chancellor for information technology and chief information officer, said, “We have been hearing from our customers all over campus for some time now that the old Webmail system needed to be replaced with something more current and similar to products students, faculty and staff have experience with, such as Google or Yahoo.

“Last year’s budget cuts prevented ITS from addressing this sooner. Fortunately, ITS has found a way to pursue an upgrade despite the ongoing budget challenges for the University.”

The old version of Webmail will continue to be available through a link on the log-in page (webmail.unc.edu) for the next few months to give people time to transition to the new version.

INSIDE THE PRINT EDITION: AUGUST 12, 2009

Aug. 12 issue
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