Deploy a real-time collaboration server

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© Lead Image © orson, 123RF.com

© Lead Image © orson, 123RF.com

Article from Issue 229/2019
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Openfire is an instant messaging and group chat server that lets users communicate via the popular XMPP standard.

Used responsibly, instant messaging (IM) offers the benefit of instant communication and collaboration on the corporate intranet. However, many companies, fearing IM's adverse affect on productivity, tweak their corporate firewalls to block all ports ferrying IM traffic. A better approach is to control the IM server by bringing it in-house. The Java-based, cross-platform Openfire server [1] makes it easy to host your own IM server.

The Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP) is one of the most popular protocols for powering an IM server. There are several XMPP-based IM servers available, but Openfire is one of the easiest to deploy and manage. Openfire implements many of the XMPP protocol's commonly used features [2] and scales well.

The Openfire server can be deployed on Windows, Mac OS X, and on various Linux distros, such as Debian, CentOS, Ubuntu, and Fedora [3]. To get started with Openfire, first make sure your server has the Java Runtime Environment (JRE) installed. If you are deploying Openfire on an RPM-based system such as CentOS, you're all set since the Openfire RPM package bundles the JRE.

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