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Efficient Way for a Desktop Gadget to Access the GAL Directly? RRS feed

  • Question

  • I developed a desktop gadget for our company that can answer IT questions for our users; the idea being to eliminate some of the nuisance calls to our helpdesk.  It's very promising if I do say so.

    However my boss's boss is on the fence about it.  He thinks it has potential but noted that it needs more of a hook.  And he's right actually, I lost track of the fact that people wouldn't be using this gadget every day for IT issues.  He requested that I make it able to look up people in the address list.  I said sure and I've been researching that. 

    Now by the looks of it I can get it to import the address book directly from Outlook.  2 concerns though:

    1) It could end up being clunky and slow to search.

    2) Even if I get it going, what have I accomplished?  Created an address book alternative with roughly the same functionality as Outlook and that will only work if Outlook is working? :P 

    The only way I could really see a benefit in this is if the gadget could download the GAL directly from Exchange.  Any thoughts on that?

    Tuesday, May 1, 2012 3:11 PM

Answers

  • 1 - Do you really want to "import" the GAL into your program or would you rather just "access" it? It seems importing it would be the wrong operation. There's no reason just accessing the GAL should be clunky or slow.

    2 - You really have two choices. You can either tie yourself to Outlook, and access the GAL through there. This gets you the benefit of being able to consult the offline address book, which could be really good for work from home or laptop scenarios. Or you could skip Outlook and just consult the directory directly using LDAP. This, of course, means the machine must be joined to the network and have connectivity.

    Tuesday, May 1, 2012 4:23 PM
    Answerer

All replies

  • 1 - Do you really want to "import" the GAL into your program or would you rather just "access" it? It seems importing it would be the wrong operation. There's no reason just accessing the GAL should be clunky or slow.

    2 - You really have two choices. You can either tie yourself to Outlook, and access the GAL through there. This gets you the benefit of being able to consult the offline address book, which could be really good for work from home or laptop scenarios. Or you could skip Outlook and just consult the directory directly using LDAP. This, of course, means the machine must be joined to the network and have connectivity.

    Tuesday, May 1, 2012 4:23 PM
    Answerer
  • Ultimately I think we'd want both.  Offline functionality for laptops (we have alot of laptops) and Outlook-independant LDAP functionality for when Outlook is broken or for when a user logs into a computer that doesn't have their profile set up.

    I guess I'll keep tinkering with the MAPI code that I haven't quite mastered yet.  I might have some questions about it shortly.

    Tuesday, May 1, 2012 4:45 PM