Flinders University gives open source the boot

Flinders University will migrate its 16,000 students over to Microsoft’s Live@edu email platform from mid-2010 after dropping an in-house open source solution.

The Adelaide-based university signed the deal after a 12-month trial of the internally developed open source platform, Google and other hosted email systems.

The university’s infrastructure manager, Dean Gawler, said Live@edu will give IT staff greater flexibility to concentrate on internal student management systems.

“We were looking to maximise how we used our internal resources and infrastructure, and we thought if people are out there who can provide email services just as effectively than we can, we’d be crazy to not consider those,” he said.

“Then we will be able to use our internal recourses to do other things and bring more benefit to the university.”

The move follows the University of Sydney, which began rolling out Live@edu in May, the Queensland University of Technology, which began in March and most-recently Perth-based Curtin University.

The Live@edu suite of online applications includes Microsoft Outlook Live, Microsoft Office Live Workspace and SkyDrive storage, which provides students with a 10GB mailbox capacity.

In addition to a hosted email account, the students will also have access to Windows Live Messenger and file sharing, Windows Live Spaces for personal web publishing, blogging and photo sharing and FolderShare and a private peer-to-peer network.

The university is now working on the design and planning of the migration.

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Copyright © 2009 IDG Communications, Inc.

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