As my company grows, the need for a more all-encompassing group calendaring solution becomes pressing. So far, we have worked with a mixture of shared Google calendars and Thunderbird plugin Lightning, but both fall a bit short of what Exchange can do when used in conjunction with Outlook, namely to see which other folks (and resources) would be available at a particular time. There's an additional plugin for Thunderbird/Lightning called Provider for Google Calendar which allows two-way sync with a Google calendar, but during event creation I still can't see what is going on at a particular time. I suppose that's due to the fcat that it's just one calendar that is shared by multiple people, and not multiple calendars of all the people. So -unless I'm missing something, in which case I'd be happy to be educated about how to make this work- I'm wondering about the following issues, and would like to hear any and all thoughts and opinions:
What are people using for group calendaring (besides Exchange/Outlook, which is also an option -we're a client-side Windows shop- but not the preferred one) ?
Are there combinations of Thunderbird plugins, web sites, and/or Linux server software we could install to make this work? Commercial solutions are OK, I figure just about anything would be cheaper than setting up an Exchange server and fitting 100 desktops with Outlook.
Exchange also provides sharing of contacts; is there anything in that space for use with Thunderbird?
Again, I'm not just looking for complete solutions, ideas and opinions are welcome, too. Thanks!
If you setup sharing across all the calendars then you should be able to enable the free/busy gadget from the labs and get what you want from google calendar. That doesn't help if you're dead set on using Thunderbird, however.