ZOL customers who log into it’s MyZOL platform are being greeted with a dismissible discover telling them that ZOL will stop providing Web and Email services instantly to them beginning 02 July 2021. Their email and backup services will as an alternative be migrated to the Microsoft platform efficient from this date. Affected customers are being requested to contact help.
This is actually the top of an period the place ISPs didn’t simply offer you entry to the web but additionally offered some services together with email and hosting themselves. It means the cloud has received. Everything goes again to the cloud identical to to start with when screens had been simply dumb terminals related to mainframes.
Reminiscing about ZOL’s email and webmail
I’ve had an on and off (totally on) relationship with ZOL beginning round 2007 when a good friend and I teamed up to join what was then referred to as a ZimSurfer account. This was throughout the first financial meltdown which individuals usually refer to colloquially as 2008 and identical to now we had mendacity politicians and authorities authorities in cost who claimed every part was going nicely when it wasn’t.
We by chance found for instance that Zimbabwe’s TelOne gateway to the web was being often switched off. Yes, at one level collectors literary switched off Zimbabwe’s entry to the web due to money owed. We solely found this after complaining to ZOL that we couldn’t entry Google. That’s once we upgraded our dial-up account, with the assistance of the corporate that I used to be interning for, and he and I acquired shiny new @zol.co.zw Webmail as a perk. We additionally registered a .co.zw area for firm emails. Again that was a factor.
The benefit of getting email straight out of your IP was that it tended to be sooner as opposed to say getting it from Gmail. We had a 26kbps dial-up connection on an analogue telephone line-loading the Gmail interface was a wrestle. I used to be already a proficient Linux person and when individuals complained about sluggish email I got here up with a reasonably slick email setup:
- Instead of having every individual connecting to ZOL’s webmail and wasting your bandwidth loading all that HTML and stuff I arrange a fetchmail script on an Ubuntu server working Ubuntu 8.04 LTS
- The script would usually login into every ZOL account test for brand spanking new emails and if there was any new mail, pull it down utilizing IMAP
- It would then join to Postfix on the identical host i.e. localhost and hand over the emails
- Postfix would then hand over the email to DoveCot the email server
- When individuals checked for email utilizing Outlook they might be choosing it up from that Dovecot server which was on the identical LAN. That was fairly quick.
- When individuals ship emails, they had been relayed by way of Postfix on the identical LAN so once more it was a breeze from their perspective. Postfix would then relay the mail to ZOL/Econet’s mail server.
Yes at one level Econet had their very own email service which was [email protected] or one thing like that. We additionally used the identical email arrange when Econet lastly launched GPRS and for $25 you could possibly have blitzing speeds of 128kbps which was limitless. Exciting instances.
Why is ZOL migrating
In a FAQ section provided on the migration notice ZOL says they’ve been utilizing a legacy LinuxSci platform to cater for his or her buyer’s wants and it appears it has grow to be a ache to keep and guarantee availability. I can relate too. I used to be an advocate of internet hosting my very own email however at some level, I simply gave up. For US$2/per person monthly my cloud services supplier can present a greater service that doesn’t have me tearing my hair each now and then when the services go down.
They are doing this for a similar cause companies stopped having on premise email servers. Yes, at some level it was fairly commonplace to host your individual email services inside your premises. Having labored as a younger boy to keep such a system, I can affirm it’s not price it. Most IT departments have a tendency to be understaffed as they aren’t a core enterprise. This means that you’ve to stop serving to individuals plugin again their mouses ( or is it mice?) and keyboards and run to the server room to repair email points.
SMEs merely signed up for services like ZOL mail as an alternative. ZOL would deal with that headache for them and it appears even ZOL has had sufficient complications and need Microsoft to deal with the problem. This implies that you’ll be paying ZOL to pay Microsoft to offer you email. Users can select between the next plans:
- Exchange Online Kiosk doesn’t include Outlook integration and is proscribed to 2GB mailbox measurement
- Exchange Online Plan 1 integrates with Outlook and comes with 50GB mailboxes per person
- Exchange Online Plan 2 comes with a 100GB mailbox per person
It additionally doesn’t appear to be this can be an automatic course of or possibly it’s, there are questions there. While ZOL appears to suggest the migrations will be completed by 02 July the FAQ part says those that need to migrate have to get in contact with help. If you’re affected I believe it’s greatest you get in contact with ZOL as quickly as attainable to get clarification.
One query you’ll have is why Microsoft and not Google Workspace? Personally, I’ve at all times most well-liked Google’s cloud choices in contrast to Microsoft however the factor is quite a bit of companies already rely closely on Microsoft merchandise and Liquid Intelligent Technologies being companions with Microsoft might have influenced the choice.
It’s not clear whether or not you’ve gotten to possibility to select your individual email supplier or not. It ought to be simple to do this although as all you’ll need to do is join along with your most well-liked supplier and ask ZOL to up to date your MX information on their finish. Another factor that’s not clear is how a lot the service will price you monthly or should you can pay using ZWL which the government says is being accepted internationally.