open text_logo_2009.jpg
Earlier this week Mimosa Systems (news, site) announced its NearPoint archiving solution would support Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 (MES 2010). Now Open Text (news, site)  has upgraded its enterprise content management suite’s fax functionality so that it too works with MES 2010.

While there will be a lot of stick-in-the-mud document management software vendors who would argue that enterprises shouldn’t be using fax in the first place, the reality is that for most companies fax and faxing is still an important business tool.

In fact many companies who have invested considerable money in network-based fax capabilities could see their investments heading south with the launch of MES 2010 if the two cannot be integrated.

Not so now for Open Text ECM clients, who will be able to continue to use fax, connecting with MES 2010 using Open Text Fax Server, Right Fax Edition, and who as a result will be able to benefit from all the new capabilities that the new Exchange Server will bring, faxing away until they run out of paper.

Unified Communications

Just to recap as we covered MES 2010 for beginners earlier this week, MES 2010 is the cornerstone of Microsoft’s Unified Communications solution, and a flexible messaging platform that aims to provide users with the freedom to securely access e-mail, voice mail and instant messaging from virtually any platform,  browser or mobile device.

In the case of Open Text ECM, you can now also get enhanced fax processing software that integrates seamlessly with MES 2010, effectively turning faxing into another form of messaging.

Which is just as well, because businesses that require signatures (think legal or mortgages), or businesses that require original drawings (think engineering and architecture) still use fax despite the large number of electronic signature solutions that are currently available.

The reason fax is still used is that in many instances faxes and accompanying signatures have a legal standing, which is where Open Text’s RightFax Edition scores again by preserving the original fax electronically.

Open Text And MES 2010

And with faxing capabilities fully integrated into the ECM and MES 2010, users can now receive, view and send faxes from a variety of devices and locations in much the same way email can.

A relatively straightforward solution, it works by sending a fax message from MES 2010 to the Open Text Fax Server when a fax first comes into an enterprise, which in turn transmits it to Microsoft Outlook as a native fax message. It is then sent on to the recipients' Outlook inbox.

The beauty of it is that all faxes that come in or are sent out are preserved digitally, preventing loss or alteration as the fax moves through its lifecycle. Faxes can also be routed to mobile users, who can read and respond to faxes from their smart phones.

If you really have to use fax it sounds like a runner, although probably not as good as no faxes at all.