Write opensync conduit to sync / synchronise / synchronize addressbooks etc to palm, phone and other devices

NEW
Unassigned

Status

MailNews Core
Address Book
--
enhancement
12 years ago
3 years ago

People

(Reporter: Aaron Whitehouse, Unassigned)

Tracking

Bug Flags:
wanted-thunderbird3 -

Firefox Tracking Flags

(Not tracked)

Details

(Whiteboard: http://wiki.mozilla.org/Mozilla2:Device_Sync:Overview, URL)

(Reporter)

Description

12 years ago
User-Agent:       Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux i686; en-US; rv:1.7.10) Gecko/20050721 Firefox/1.0.6 (Ubuntu package 1.0.6)
Build Identifier: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; U; Linux i686; en-US; rv:1.7.10) Gecko/20050721 Firefox/1.0.6 (Ubuntu package 1.0.6)

Opensync (http://www.opensync.org) is the way that synchronisation is going.
Having looked through the lists of enhancement requests, it is filled with users
wanting to sync their device (other than a palm) with their computer (running
something other than Windows) - see Bug 271240 Bug 285980 Bug 259068 Bug 16767
Bug  203927 Bug 239784 are just a few, not to mention the pages of outstanding
bugs on the one combination that does have (albeit very limited) support.

The logical solution, as I see it, is for the MoFo not to try to be what they
are not. It is a severe waste of developer time for them to write and maintain
conduits for every device and yet the demand is there. The solution at the
moment is to just do the Palm for Windows for Addressbooks and ignore the rest
of the pleas.

What the MoFo *should* do is to write a simple opensync conduit. The advantages,
as I see them, are:
- it surely cannot be too difficult to write a conversion plugin from an xml
format Thunderbird addressbook to the standard xml schema intermediate format
- the idea is supported by the MoFo http://wiki.mozilla.org/Calendar:Device_Sync
- support can be added as a library
- opensync currently supports Linux, I believe supports Mac and Windows is
expected soon
- by maintaining this one conversion plugin, opensync will effectively support a
vast number of devices and methods of connection (IR, bluetooth, cables) on your
behalf
- beginning implementation with addressbook support in Thunderbird would provide
an extensive beta-testing phase for the movement to the framework for the
Lightening project. A lot of the code and knowledge from this connection would
help developers sync calenders, to do lists and perhaps mail at a later date and
for the entire Mozilla product range
- the MoFo would be seen to support another important open source project
- most of the reported bugs are related to issues that are not related to the
conversion step and so would no longer be your problem. This method would focus
developer time on the small step most easily controlled by Mozilla
- the plugin could be used to keep two copies of TB in sync with one another,
with other programmes on the same machine (e.g. Evolution) or with a central server
- Opensync (and Multisync, its founding project) already have extensive support
from key players in the open source arena
- Users would be able to sync their devices, it would actually work and everyone
would be happy; dancing through fields of daisys etc.

I do not see why it wouldn't be the responsible step and I believe that it will
need to be taken at some stage in the future as more devices / programmes use
the opensync framework.

Reproducible: Always

Steps to Reproduce:
(Reporter)

Comment 1

12 years ago
For those needing background on opensync, please check their site or read my
blog on this issue at
http://www.whitehouse.org.nz/serendipity/index.php?/archives/29-Opensync-and-my-enhancement-request-for-Mozilla-Thunderbird.html

Comment 2

12 years ago
FWIW, wiki.mozilla.org is merely a scratchpad where we flesh out thoughts and
plans.  The fact that something is sitting on that site does not necessarily
imply that it has the support of the Mozilla Foundation, the community as a
whole, or anyone else.  We haven't totally sorted out our sync plans yet, though
it's definitely possible that opensync will be part of them.  Another detailed
set of wiki pages about some of the related issues:
<http://wiki.mozilla.org/Mozilla2:Device_Sync>.
Assignee: mscott → dmose
Status: UNCONFIRMED → NEW
Ever confirmed: true
OS=all, etc.
OS: Linux → All
Hardware: PC → All
Summary: Write opensync conduit to sync / synchronise / synchronize addressbooks etc. → Write opensync conduit to sync / synchronise / synchronize addressbooks etc to palm, phone and other devices
Version: unspecified → Trunk
Component: Address Book → MailNews: Address Book
Product: Thunderbird → Core
Whiteboard: http://wiki.mozilla.org/Mozilla2:Device_Sync:Overview

Comment 4

11 years ago
As a side note, Opensync developers might be very helpful when someone at our side knowing the Mozilla codebase, tries to work on that.
I suspect that because Armin Bauer, one of the main Opensync developers, talks about it in a recent interview at http://dot.kde.org/1148063569/ - "One thing I would really like to see is a Thunderbird plugin for OpenSync. I use Thunderbird personally and would really like to keep my contacts up to date with my cellular, but I was not yet able to find the time to implement it."

So, probably, if someone on our side finds the time to do so, I guess Armin would help from the Opensync side...
QA Contact: addressbook

Comment 5

10 years ago
Assigning bugs that I'm not actively working on back to nobody; use
SearchForThis as a search term if you want to delete all related bugmail at
once.
Assignee: dmose → nobody

Comment 6

9 years ago
Adding David Ascher to the CC:

This bug covers a news thread Brainstorming topic Subject: Thunderbird 3 Planning
Newsgroups: news.mozilla.org/mozilla.dev.apps.thunderbird
Date: Mon, 28 Jan 2008 14:53:49

This RFE indicates some ground work was in progress, but got futured for shortage of man hours.
(Assignee)

Updated

9 years ago
Product: Core → MailNews Core
I added a Wiki page for sync: https://wiki.mozilla.org/MailNews:Sync
Regards
Friedrich
There is some activity in having a thunderbird
plugin based on opensync: http://bluezync.kaarposoft.dk
Opensync allows to sync between many targets but the 
direction of blueZync is to provide sync over
bluetooth/infrared/usb (OBEX) with mobile phones mainly. 
One problem is that not all of the underlying libraries
are supported in windows.

Updated

9 years ago
Flags: wanted-thunderbird3?
Denying wanted-thunderbird3-. The possibilities for syncing are currently being discussed. It is already understood/decided that to try and write something in the Thunderbird 3 timeframe would be too much work to get a reasonable implementation. It is expected to be more of a focus on the next major version of Thunderbird.

This does not mean we won't accept patches for other people. It does mean that we're not focussing directly on this area for Thunderbird 3.
Flags: wanted-thunderbird3? → wanted-thunderbird3-

Comment 10

8 years ago
From what I've seen, Opensync appears to be the way to go (at the moment) given its large support matrix, including Palm, Google, Evolution, KDE PIM, Motorola, Nokia, and WinCE, not to mention SyncML (see bug 121948 ).  On top of that, Opensync already has a Mozilla Sunbird plugin, and as noted in Comment #8, there is already a fledgling Mozilla Thunderbird plugin in the works, too.

(In reply to comment #9)
> The possibilities for syncing are currently being discussed. [...] It is
> expected to be more of a focus on the next major version of Thunderbird.

Mark, can you link us to the syncing debate (or its archives)?  Are there any official announcements on that front?
(In reply to comment #10)
> (In reply to comment #9)
> > The possibilities for syncing are currently being discussed. [...] It is
> > expected to be more of a focus on the next major version of Thunderbird.
> 
> Mark, can you link us to the syncing debate (or its archives)?  Are there any
> official announcements on that front?

Most of the discussions haven't yet been written down. At the moment due to our Thunderbird 3 work this has been low priority, but we'll be starting to have more discussions and documenting our plans in the new year.

Comment 12

8 years ago
Hi, Armin Bauer is currently busy with his new start-up - i kind of turned into the new Maintainer role. Currently we're working getting the next stable OpenSync release out: 0.40. Which is heavy refactored synchronization core, to fit the needs of all kind of Synchronization Protocols/Plugins.

Friedrich Beckmann is already a great help on getting the engine working on OpenSync. Currently it builds i guess, but the IPC in it still cause some trouble. We'll try to fix this ASAP, since this is also some issue for FreeBSD, OpenSolaris, ...

Henrik, maintainer of OpenSync plugin mozilla-sync and BlueZync could be also interested in this effort. I guess he would be a big win since he has already experience with mozilla/thunderbird and the OpenSync plugin and frontend API.

If you have implementation question of OpenSync inside Thunderbird/Lightning, feel free to contact me directly or the OpenSync developer mailinglist: opensync-devel@lists.sourceforge.net

I'm sure that some of our developers are very interested in implementing some PoC synchronization into Thunderbird/Lightning.
Hi,

I am the developer of blueZync.

As mentioned in comment #8, blueZync is able to synchronize Thunderbird/Lightning/Sunbird with OpenSync peers (mobile phones etc).

I would be more than happy to help getting this into the mozilla codebase, if wanted.

/Henrik Kaare Poulsen
Duplicate of this bug: 564687
See Also: → bug 121948
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