Zentyal Development Team is glad to announce the availability of a new beta installer, Zentyal 2.1-2! This is the last beta version: from July to September a series of release candidates will be published, and in September the next stable release (Zentyal 2.2) will see daylight.

This installer contains all the improvements and bugfixes done since the release of the previous beta installer (2.1-1 ). Moreover, it also comes with the first previews of three fully new modules: PPTP, Captive Portal and VM Management. It is important to notice that these modules are still under development and they may be in alpha status – They are not intended for production environments.

The new installer (available for 32 and 64 bit architectures) is available at the Beta Downloads page. The 2.1 packages can also be installed on an existing Ubuntu Server 10.04, following the Installation Guide instructions. Users who already have a 2.1 installation only need to upgrade to the latest versions of all the available packages.

As to the VM Management module, it is worth to notice that two different backends are developed to manage VirtualBox and KVM. KVM will be the default option, but the development of the VirtualBox backend is currently more advanced. Those users interested in testing it, simply need to remove the libvirt package and install the virtualbox package (sudo apt-get remove libvirt-bin && sudo apt-get install virtualbox-ose).

Please note that 2.1-2 is a beta version and it is not intended for production environments. If you have a spare testing server or a VM, your help in testing, reporting any problem or simply giving feedback would be greatly appreciated. With everybody’s collaboration and help, we have no doubt that 2.2 will be the best Zentyal release ever!

Most ISP provide Internet connections using a dynamic IP address. This address changes from time to time so is not possible to point a domain name to it because it is not fixed. Dynamic DNS allows to update the public IP address associated to a domain so you can expose services to the Internet using the known domain name: different websites, VPN for remote access or a mail server.

The free Zentyal Basic Subscription offers a zentyal.me subdomain for your server (e.g. yourserver.zentyal.me) with up to 3 additional aliases. These subdomains are available on “first-come, first-served” basis so grab your own before someone else does! On top of that you configure the MX records needed if you set up a mail server. One of the star features of Zentyal Dynamic DNS service is the multigateway support: if you have multiple Internet connections you will get a third level subdomain for each one (e.g. dsl1.yourserver.zentyal.me, dsl2.myserver.zentyal.me, etc) which will point to you main subdomain on round-robin for load balancing.

Zentyal Cloud Dynamic DNS configuration is integrated on the server administration interface and the domain management is available on your Zentyal Cloud account. You can gain access to this brand new feature by subscribing your Zentyal servers (2.1 and higher) to Zentyal Cloud with the free Basic Subscription. Currently this feature is available only for latest Zentyal beta versions which will become the next stable Zentyal version (Zentyal 2.2) in September 2011.

The Zentyal Basic Subscription is a free community subscription, aimed to be used in testing environments. It gives access to some Zentyal Cloud features and services, giving the users an idea of Zentyal Cloud functionality. Currently these features and services include:

  • Remote backup of your Zentyal server configuration
  • Basic alerts: connectivity of your Zentyal server, available software updates or failed automatic configuration backup
  • Dynamic DNS: zentyal.me subdomain for your server with multigateway support and up to 3 aliases
  • Zentyal server name in the web browser tab
  • The Zentyal Development Team is glad to announce the launch of the Zentyal Community Documentation! This initiative, proposed by Zentyal community members, aims at offering community members a space where they can share useful how-tos, tips, scenarios, screencasts and any other type of information considered useful to other Zentyal server users.

    The Zentyal Community Documentation is made available in wiki format and anyone registered in the Zentyal Forum is free to add new wiki pages or to modify them in the Community Documentation Repository. Please note that by contributing you accept the Zentyal Contributor Agreement (ZCA) and your contribution is published under Creative Commons “Attribution-Share Alike” license.

    Zentyal Development Teams believes that the community documentation offers a great chance to complete the official documentation with practical use cases, as well as to gather together and structure all the information that until now has been scattered in Forum boards or blogs. In the next weeks we will be going through the documentation we could add and we’re also looking forward to receiving your contributions!

    Support the World IPv6 Day celebrated today, 8th of JuneZentyal Development Team is glad to announce their support for the World IPv6 Day, that is being celebrated worldwide today 8th of June, by activating Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) on all Zentyal websites. Major sites like Google, Yahoo! or Facebook will serve their content through IPv6 by default today.

    The World IPv6 Day, organized by the Internet Society, aims at testing the effects of large-scale transition from current version of the Internet Protocol IPv4 to the new version IPv6 and raising awareness across the industry to prepare their services for IPv6.

    The activation of IPv6 at Zentyal websites allows users with IPv6 connectivity to access the sites with the same quality and speed as users with IPv4. However, you won’t be able to access the sites if you have a broken IPv6 connectivity. You can check your connectivity and determine if you will experience troubles with this change.

    Concerning IPv6 support on Zentyal server, a fundraising campaign that aims at bringing this feature to Zentyal 2.3 (that will become the next stable Zentyal release, Zentyal 3.0, in 2012) was launched recently. Adding IPv6 support for Zentyal server is not an easy task as it duplicates the complexity of configuration of all network services and should be approached very carefully, but if you want to speed up the development, you can start helping now!

    Zentyal Development Team is extremely glad to announce that the fundraising goal for the Zentyal Captive Portal has been reached and therefore, this module will be included in the next stable Zentyal release (Zentyal 2.2), that will be released in September 2011. The fundraising goal was completed yesterday thanks to a donor that prefers to stay anonymous.

    The Zentyal Captive Portal module will allow to enforce HTTP clients to authenticate on a special web page before allowing them access to the Internet. This is specially useful at Wi-Fi hotspots to control wired access (Internet cafés, hotels, etc.) This module will include the following features and the first beta version for testing is expected for the end of June:

  • Full integration with Zentyal Firewall, Users and Logs modules
  • Secure authentication via HTTPS or splash-only portal with URL redirection to a given page
  • Source (clients), destination (servers) and service (ports) exceptions
  • Secure client filtering using IP address, MAC address and session key automatically reloaded on a pop-up
  • Configurable client idle timeout and maximum connections per client
  • As to the other fundraising campaigns started for Zentyal 2.2 (Thin Clients (LTSP Integration), Periodic Tasks management (cron) and IPv6 support), unfortunately these campaigns didn’t reach their goals. However, the fundraising for these features continues and whenever a new goal is reached, the development will be accelerated to add the feature as soon as possible to Zentyal 2.3 (that will become the next stable Zentyal release, Zentyal 3.0, in 2012). So, if you are specially interested in one of these features, don’t hesitate to contribute and promote your favorite campaign!

    The Development Team of Zentyal, the Linux small business server previously know as eBox Platform, is glad to announce that the second Zentyal 2.1 beta installer (Zentyal 2.1-1) is now available for download. This version includes all the current development improvements for Zentyal 2.2 and the first beta of the new IPsec module.

    Zentyal 2.1 is a development version based on Ubuntu 10.04.2 and it will become Zentyal 2.2, next stable release, in September 2011. Until then, the Zentyal Development Team will frequently release new beta versions with new features and improvements that you can help testing. As to this version, the most relevant changes include:

  • New IPsec module
  • New Asterisk 1.8 integration
  • New module selection page on the installer
  • Allow to define IP ranges on objects
  • Reorganization of menu entries
  • Improved bug report system with automatic creation of tickets
  • Lots of bugfixing and minor improvements
  • The installer is available for 32 and 64 bit architectures and it is also possible to install the 2.1 packages on an existing Ubuntu Server 10.04 following the instructions of the Installation Guide. Users who already have a 2.1 installation, don’t need to use the installer, but only need to upgrade to the latest versions of all the available packages.

    Please remember that 2.1 is a beta version and it is not intended for production environments. However, all beta testing help is greatly appreciated as well as bug reports, feedback and ideas that can be given through the Zentyal Forum or Zentyal Trac.

    Zentyal Development Team will be in Budapest, Hungary, for the Ubuntu Developer Summit (UDS) held from the 9th until the 15th of May. To make most of the stay, Zentyal and Prolin (Authorized Zentyal Partner in Hungary) have organized a training event that will be held on Friday, 13th of May, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. in the Hotel Mercure Budapest Metropol (Rakoczi ut 58, H-1074, Budapest).

    The event is specially aimed at system administrators interested in migrating from Windows server environments to easy-to-use Linux server environment, based on Zentyal. During the event, the attendees are given a brief introduction to Zentyal server and two technical demostrations, one on migrating from Microsoft Exchange Server to Zentyal and the second one on building a secure network gateway with Zentyal.

    The event is free of charge, but registration is required to estimate number of attendees. You can register simply by sending an email to info@zentyal.com, indicating your name and your company name. Below you can find the detailed program.

    Zentyal Training Event Program (13th of May, Budapest, Hungary)
    17:30 – 18:00 Registration
    18:00 – 18:20 Zentyal, the Linux Small Business Server, Ignacio Correas, CEO at Zentyal
    18:20 – 19:00 Migrating from a Microsoft Exchange Server to Zentyal, Jorge Salamero, System Analyst at Zentyal
    19:00 – 19:40 Building a secure gateway with Zentyal, Krisztián Czakó, CEO at ProLin
    19:40 – 20:00 Open floor discussion

    Place: Hotel Mercure Budapest Metropol (Rakoczi ut 58, H-1074, Budapest). For registration or any additional inquiries, please contact us at info@zentyal.com.

    Zentyal Development Team is glad to announce that the development roadmap for the next stable Zentyal release (Zentyal 2.2) has now been published. Zentyal 2.2 will be a major release that will run on the latest Ubuntu LTS version (Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx) and it will be released in September 2011. The first beta version (Zentyal 2.1) is already out and the first release candidates can be expected by the end of June.

    Zentyal 2.2 will ship new features such as IPsec support, UPS management, VM management, Ad-blocker, integration with Kaspersky and Google Accounts and Administrator audit logging. Furthermore, in Zentyal 2.2 the configuration backend has been rewritten with the use of the new features that Redis 2.0 provides, it will include a new i18n system and it will offer faster and easier installer. Important general usability improvements will also take place and new wizards will be added as well as unified shares. You can find the detailed roadmap at trac and give any feedback on the roadmap in the Forum.

    As Zentyal Development Team’s resources are limited, many features the community members and ourselves had hoped to include in this version had to be left out. However, we have decided to launch fundraising campaigns for four new features that Zentyal users have demanded and we have found interesting: Captive Portal, Thin Clients (LTSP Integration), Periodic tasks management (cron) and IPv6 support. If the campaigns succeed, more development resources will be assigned to include these new features in Zentyal 2.2! Are you interested in these features? Visit the Fundraising page for more information, how to contribute and spread the word!

    The vocational training program Zentyal Academy will be presented in the premises of Madrid on Rails (C/Lago Titicaca 10, Vicálvaro, 28032 Madrid) on April 28th from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. After a brief introduction to Zentyal server and this training program, hands-on workshop will take place, allowing the attendees to take their first steps with Zentyal server. The event is organized in collaboration with Madrid on Rails (MoR) and the Association of Computer Science Teachers of Madrid (A.P.I. Madrid).

    Zentyal Academy is a training program, compatible with the European curriculum, that introduces Linux-based network management tools integrated in Zentyal server in the official vocational training curriculum. Zentyal server is an easy-to-use Linux server, specially designed for small and medium organizations that allows users to quickly achieve a high level of experience in server administration and secure network management, without using command-line interface.

    The event is specially aimed at computer science teachers of secondary and higher vocational education schools, interested in introducing open source network management tools in the training programs of their schools, or deploying easy-to-use Linux server in their facilities. During the presentation, the attendees are also given examples of the different uses schools are giving to Zentyal server and how autonomous communities such as Aragon, Catalonia and La Rioja are adapting the Zentyal Academy program.

    The event is free of charge, but registration is required to estimate the number of computers needed for the hands-on workshop. For more information and registration (please note that you must first join the MoR platform and then join the event), please visit this page.

    The Zentyal Development Team is proud to announce that the English version of the “Zentyal for Network Administrators” book is now available for pre-order with 15% discount. The discounted pre-order price will be available for two weeks and the shipping will start on the 31st of March. The book, that until now has been available only in Spanish, describes the most important technical features of Zentyal and helps the reader to learn to manage successfully small business IT infrastructures by means of theoretical introductions, practical examples, exercises and professional tips.

    “The Spanish version of the book has been extremely well received and valued as useful training material and professional reference manual” said Javi Vázquez, Chief Operating Officer at Zentyal. “Ever since we launched the first Spanish version, our customers and community members have asked for an English edition and thanks to the cooperation with Interlinux, our UK-based partner, we’re very happy to offer it starting from today!”

    Besides being a full guide to Linux-based network management with Zentyal, the book “Zentyal for Network Administrators” is written with the aim of preparing the reader for the ZeCA certification exam (Zentyal Certified Associate). This vendor-certified exam allows IT professionals to validate their knowledge in Linux small business server management with Zentyal. You can now download a .pdf sample of the book (chapter of the HTTP Proxy Service) from the Zentyal On-line Store.