Sunday, December 15, 2013

Interact with a new version of the IM server smoothly!

We released a new version 4.3.0 of Bopup Communication Server which improved the Welcome page of Management Console and added other improvements.


See overall configuration progress of the IM server with helpful tips

It is a known thing that our IM server offers a huge number of functions and provides a lot of functionality. And new users can be in confusion and frustrated on a first start of the console: too many things must be performed like adding user contacts, enabling right authentication, etc. What to do first? And we understand how to important to support new users, allow them to configure the server with ease and smoothness. Thus now Management Console interacts with a user, it helps to move administrator through all required steps in order to get the communication server ready to accept clients and to enable communication for them.

The most important feature is the tooltips above each part of the server shown on the Welcome page, i.e. User Accounts, Messaging Groups, News Messages, File Distribution, Archiving & Logging and IM Client Updates & Branding. Of course users are the primary key to organize the server so the console shows only a single tooltip above User Accounts section on it's first startup if there is no accounts. This will force to create users first instead of other things and features.

Once at least a single user has been created or imported the console unlocks other general tasks and shows tooltips for them. Once a task completed it is marked with a check sign above it instead of the tooltip. Now no matter what task is performed first, Groups, News, File Distribution — it would be moved to the left and placed near User Accounts task. So general blocks on the Welcome page are now built dynamically!

Another great function is a progress bar that indicates an overall process of tasks completion. It has a green color and moves at bottom of the task blocks from 0% to 100%.


The Setup Wizard prevents installation of built-in SQL Server on Windows 20012/8

We also improved a setup package and now the installation wizard of the communication server recognizes latest Windows 2012 and version 8 if a user selects to install built-in SQL Server within the server. Since the IM server is shipped with MS SQL Server 2005 Express edition it is not supported by those versions of Windows. So the setup would bring an information dialog that explains how to avoid this issue and manually set up SQL Server 2008 or 2012, for example.


Added support for Android clients

Did you hear that we are working on Anroid clients in a past few months? Our first mobile messenger is going to a release soon and version 4.3 of Bopup Communication Server now officially supports it. Currently we are on alpha testing phase of Android software.


Download Bopup Communication Server version 4.3.0

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Tips & Tricks: How to override current user account to use it in the messenger

We already described in the past a similar situation and advised to use Private login and password as a personal  authentication for a user if he needs to do not use his current logon name in Windows. Read that article at Tips & Tricks: How to get users connected under different IM accounts if they have the same Windows logon name

That solution works fine but sometimes it is required to keep existing authentication and just override user account name. For example, a user can be renamed in Windows but the system is continued using his old logon name everywhere except Welcome screen. And there is no bug because user account must be migrated but not renamed if we want to use a new logon name in Windows and installed applications. There are also many useful and helpful articles on the net that explain that Existing user account names: Don't rename them, migrate them. But anyway, if we only renamed the user how to force the messenger to use his new logon name? That's possible!

Starting from earlier versions both Bopup Messenger and Bopup Observer support a hidden option in system registry that allows to overwrite current user account that would be used by the IM client. The setting named "OverwrittenAccount" and must be created in application's root under HKCU key:

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\B Labs\Bopup Messenger]
"OverwrittenAccount"="desired-im-account"


where "desired-im-account" is the new user name that would override his current name in Windows. This solution works perfectly if Simple authentication is enabled on the communication server and using it a user will be able to continue connect to the IM server smoothly and fast like he logged prior renaming the account.

You can also download the registry file from our website, modify and apply it on users' computers http://www.bopup.com/files/override-account.reg

Friday, November 22, 2013

Prevent removing the messenger by users by using new versions of the IM clients

In addition to the IM server both Bopup Messenger and Bopup Observer have been updated too and versions 6.3.3 and 5.3.3 have been released accordingly. Most important newly added function is a hidden "DisableUninstall" option that was added to [INSTALL] section of the client configuration file. That setting can be controlled via initial setup/version update of the messenger by using Setup.ini file placed near it's MSI package file or can be managed via Setup.ini Configuration Tool from the communication server on distribution client settings.

This option removes Remove button for the messenger application in "Programs and Features" panel ("Add/Remove Programs" in earlier versions of Windows) and blocks it's uninstallation by end-users. That's important if administrator wants to be sure that nothing can do troubles in a proper starting up the instant messaging clients on users' computers.

New version 6.3.3 of Bopup Messenger also fixed the "Use idle away as automated response to incoming personal messages" if this setting is specified in configuration file downloaded from Bopup Communication Server.

The messaging clients also fixed issues with program "hotkey" to call a main window from System Tray or Task Bar areas. Previously it could operate with only Ctrl+Alt keys and without any letter symbol specified in the options.

Download Bopup Messenger version 6.3.3 and Bopup Observer version 5.3.3

Thursday, November 21, 2013

New version of the IM server added control to disregard messenger configuration for specific user accounts

We released new versions of our instant messaging software a couple days ago. New updates, as always, added useful options and features because we work hard on the software applications and try to hear customers' suggestions and requirements. In this view latest version 4.2.2 of Bopup Communication Server added very useful and important function that allows to do not deliver and not apply IM client configuration file (setup.ini) for a user account if his roles require that.

Yeah, distribution of the client option is a great feature. But sometimes this function interferes in user's permissions and rights if he or she requires to get a full control over messenger options. That was unsupported because options distributed to all users in the IM system. Another problem if the instant messaging system has few users or user groups that connect from different locations. That means that they use different server name or it's address and a single settings file will not work. And that causes problems.

We met suggestions and reports of our customers so now Management Console of Bopup Communication Server includes new option on a user's profile window. It is called "Disregard settings file".


Checking this option disregards delivery of currently uploaded settings file for Bopup Messenger or Bopup Observer clients.

Version 4.2.2 of the communication server also comes with updated Setup.ini Configuration Tool which added option to prevent uninstallation of messenger clients from Programs and Features panel (Add/Remove Programs in older systems).

Download Bopup Communication Server version 4.2.2

Friday, November 15, 2013

Bopup IM Client SDK now supports Microsoft Office applications

We are proud to announce and inform stand-alone programmers and software development companies that new released of Bopup IM Client SDK is now available. Version 1.0.3 added a new interface called IServerClientVBA that fully supports Visual Basic for Application (VBA) environment. VBA is a built-in development platform that comes with Microsoft Office suite. Thus it is possible to create macros, custom form in Excel, Word, Outlook, Access, PowerPoint and other office applications to instantly communicate with other users through Bopup Communication Server.

Please review our online documentation for the IServerClientVBA interface to learn more about it's methods, used types and constants that is available at MS Office (VBA) Developer's Guide Online Documentation New version of Bopup IM Client SDK also improved existing technical documentation within sample code, and tutorial projects also include Microsoft Excel files that demonstrate using the library from VBA editor.

Download Bopup IM Client SDK version 1.0.3

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Tips & Tricks: How to prevent users from uninstallation of IM clients?

Sometimes security policies of a company require to prevent users rights to uninstall instant messenger software from their local PC. Our software already offers an option that prevents users from existing the IM client application. That can be done via "RestrictExitProgram=1" setting in the Setup.ini configuration file and Setup.ini Configuration Tool. Both of them are available for download at www.bopup.com But there is no option to disable uninstallation of the application from Programs and Features panel (Add/Remove Programs (ARP) in earlier Windows versions). But that's possible too.

Since setup packages of Bopup IM client software are provided in MSI files then it is possible to use command line options for msiexec launcher by putting standard Windows Installer properties. In order to disable Remove option in the Control Panel "ARPNOREMOVE=1" (in upper case) must be used. Thus the command line that launches the setup package and installs it with no disabled remove option in ARP should be the following:

msiexec /i bopupmes.msi ARPNOREMOVE=1

Bopup Observer client observer.msi package name must be specified instead of bopupmes.msi

There are so many options, and it is even possible to set IM server name by putting "IMSERVER=" property (in upper-case letters) to set a name/address of Bopup Communication Server. 

Yes, there is a little problem to use the command line options if the IM client applications are deployed/upgraded via Active Directory Group Policies (GPO). So we plan to add a new option to the setup.ini configuration file to support uninstallation through it.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

New versions of the IM clients added minor but useful updates

We released new updates for Bopup Messenger and Bopup Observer clients which add a few useful changes and improvements. See below the additions and fixes in the lastest versions of the IM clients.

Added option to send idle away message as automated response to incoming personal messages

The messenger client added a useful option that allows to automatically send responses to incoming personal messages. This is possible if idle away check box is enabled because automated replies can include only current idle away message.


Fixed error with displaying single quote sign (') in the conversation that became a double quote sign

Both clients, the messenger and observer, fix annoying issue with displaying a single quote sign (') in a text of messages in conversations. This sign became shown as a double quote (") which brought problems an important data has been sent. That was not a server or data transmission problem because the client modified the text itself in order to properly save it into message archive stored locally on a user's computer.

Fixed issue when outgoing message was not shown in the conversation

We also found and fixed another weird problem in the messenger client when outgoing instant message has not been shown immediately in the conversation chat. Get the new version to solve that issue.

Improved Message History module

New updates of the IM clients are shipped with improved message history viewer. It fixes problems with selection and display of a huge number of messages and file transfers for a future review, saving to a file or printing.

Download Bopup Messenger version 6.3.2 and Bopup Observer 5.3.2

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

"User is typing message..." event is now supported!

We glad to inform our customers that new versions of Bopup IM suite are now available for download. Both the come with major versions because we did a lot of work, added useful improvements and fixed many issues. See what is new below.

User typing event
Firstly we need to say about very useful function. Maybe it is known from public messenger when users can see in their conversations that another one is currently typing a message or reply. Year, this adds interactivity interactivity and improves usability. When we see that the reply is being typed we do not close chat window immediately. And now our software provides that support too!

Download and update both the server and client parts in order to be able to use this function. The "User is typing message..." event appears every time in a conversation dialog of Bopup Messenger client. Delivery of this instant notification event is controlled on Bopup Communication Server and you can disable it from the Options dialog box by switching to Messaging tab.

Displaying a huge amount of messages on the server history
Management Console of the communication server fixes issues with showing a great number of messages and file transfers selected from a Message History. That issue also related to displaying some profile pages for account, group and/or news messages. Now data is displayed quickly and with no error even you select thousands records.

Fixed installation of the IM server with built-in SQL Server
Another important issue was installation of Bopup Communication Server with it's built-in database server on latest versions of Windows. Sometimes the setup fails to complete because no connection to the SQL Server could be established. That was a security problem because Windows requires a stronger password for built-in 'sa' account for Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Express that shipped with the IM server package. We did that.

Forget about duplicate versions of the messenger software in Add/Remove Programs panel 
Our customers that distribute and deploy new updates of the IM client using the communication server faced with the problem that previous version of the software might not be properly removed from Add/Remove Programs if the update was initiated under non-administrator user account in Windows. That was too old problem that we know about. Now the messenger software removes it's previous version during an upgrade with keeping all settings and message history.


Adding File Transfers to a messenger local history
Both Bopup Messenger and Bopup Observer clients fix error with adding and saving received and sent transfers to Message History. Now al file transfers are properly archived for a future review.


Download Bopup Communication Server version 4.2, Bopup Messenger 6.3 and Bopup Observer 5.3

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Bopup IM clients added useful improvements when third-party authentication is used

We glad to inform our customers that new updates of Bopup Messenger and Bopup Observer clients were released. New versions added great improvements if the messengers connected to the communication server using third-party authentication, i.e. by entering custom logon name and password.

Now it is possible to control "Remember me on this computer" option and also to close established session with the IM server and log out from the main menu in the messenger by showing "Login" page.

Another great addition is displaying current account name in a title of main window if third-party authorization is used.

Download Bopup Messenger 6.2.0 and Bopup Observer 5.2.0

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Bopup Scanner version 2.1.8 comes with minor improvements

Our Bopup Scanner application does not relate to Bopup IM suite. It is a free network scanner that lets you easily and quickly scan your LAN and show MAC with IP addresses, workstations names and even logged users on remote computers. The scanner depends on NetBIOS protocol installed over TCP/IP and supports multiple network adapters (cards) installed on a local computer.

New version of Bopup Scanner software fixes minor issues and opens Options dialog box on it's first startup to allow to choose network interface to use for a scan and IP range, if it is needed.

Download Bopup Scanner version 2.1.8

Friday, May 31, 2013

New version of the communication server fixes Management Console if it is installed in administration mode

New version 4.1.8 of Bopup Communication Server is available for download at Download Center. This release fixed issues with the Management Console when it manages a remote instance of the IM server, i.e. installed in the Administration mode. It might hang up when some data on the server is changed, for example new setup package of IM clients uploaded, server settings changed or branding image (logo) is selected.

Download the latest version 4.1.8 of Bopup Communication Server

Monday, May 20, 2013

The IM server enables the "Hide Organizational Units that are not available to users" option

New version of Bopup Communication Server is available for download. The version 4.1.7 implements the "Hide Organizational Units that are not available to users" on the Contact List tab of the Options dialog. That setting was added in a few releases ago but was not available for change and was grayed out. It enables a rebuild of Organizational Units structure in the user's Contact List shown in the messenger if some of units are not available due to user's Organizational Unit permissions. It can be important and useful to customers that want to hide and to do not show other units to users if they are not available.

The new version also fixes issue with disappearing users in the console if their parent Organizational Unit is moved.

It is easy to upgrade existing version of the server to the new one. Just launch a setup wizard of the new installation package to automatically upgrade the software to the latest version with keeping all application's settings and history.

Download Bopup Communication Server version 4.1.7

Friday, March 15, 2013

Major security update for Bopup Communication Server

We released new version of the communication server 4.1.6 which fixes a security issue with creation of user accounts from instant messaging clients. User were able to create any IM accounts and connect to the server even it's option restrict that. This issues appears only if Active Directory (LDAP) integration feature is enabled on the server.

This fix has a high-priority level so we advise our customers to update their existing software as soon as possible.

New versions of the IM client software are also available, and Bopup Messenger 6.1.5 and Bopup Observer 5.1.5 are ready for download. These updates add a support for new hidden option named "DisableRememberMeOption" that can be now found in setup.ini settings file and Setup.ini Configuration Tool. It lets disable "Remember me on this computer" checkbox on the "Log in" tab in the messengers if the client software is used on shared or public computers, for example.

Get software updates from Download Center

Monday, January 28, 2013

IM Server improves a restore of SQL backups and printing Message History

New version 4.1.4 of Bopup Communication Server has been released on January 27, 2013. It is a not mandatory update but it fixes and improves some useful features of the software.

What's new:

Added new option in the SQL Database Maintenance dialog to restore database backups created on another server

The SQL Database Maintenance dialog of the Management Console adds a new check box that says the console that a SQL database backup (that is intended for restore) was created on another SQL Server and/or another instance of the communication server. It is very important because in that case the backup will be restored with WITH REPLACE option.

Added UAC verification to control status of the IM service

Now the Management Console checks token of administrator account (UAC) under which it is running in Windows Vista and later. If there is no necessary rights to control the IM service from the Welcome page then appropriate message is shown and starting/stopping options for the service are unavailable. In order to control the service the Management Console must be launched with "Run as administrator" option selected from context menu in Windows.

Improved showing and printing Message History containing long messages

New version of Bopup Communication Server fixes issues with displaying and printing long text messages in Message History. We removed scrollbars in the edit boxes that contain the message text and now each conversation is shown and moved to a printing device in whole.

Download Bopup Communication Server version 4.1.4

Monday, January 7, 2013

B Labs wishes you a Happy and Prosperous 2013 year!

Hi everyone! This is our first post in new year and we would like to congratulate our existing customers and future clients on joining to new 2013! We wish all our users a Happy New Year and hope that it will make you and your business more prosperous and successful. We believe that new 2013 year will bring great news and things in different area including our IM software too. We plan to release our first mobile IM client application for Android platform within the next two months. Hope you will enjoy it because it lets move the communication to a new level. Thanks for staying with us!