I was looking forward to using Filr as a replacement for our hosted FTP service that we use to communicate with our external collaborators. Our office is a small OWS site and recently we received entitlement to Filr through our subscription. 15 years ago we had used Novell FTP with our outside collaborators but this required assigning NDS server licenses to them. As we typically have three times as many external collaborators as internal OWS users, and most of them very casual users of the files, it was cost prohibitive to carry them as NDS licenses. We currently carry the external users on a piece of Amazon's cloud with a hosted ftp solution that while quite fast mangles the folder trees pretty badly (each user's tree looks different).

I was looking forward to moving this back in-house using Filr and a corner of our OES server space. Through my reading of the documentation and conversations with Novell this morning it appears that essentially nothing has changed in 15+ years with respect to the need to buy a license for each external user. Filr does offer replication, a Web 2.0+ interface and provides a proxy that is presumably less obvious to crack than an FTP, but ultimately you can't share what it calls Net Folders with an external user without setting them up in E-directory and consuming a license. From my reading, you can set them up as what the Filr a "Local User" without referencing the external LDAP (E-Directory or AD), but other than giving them home folders on the Filr appliance (useless for us) they will not be able to see shared Net Folders. Novell's Customer Response Center this morning checked and got back to us to confirm to their regret that their understanding is consistent with ours and that there is no reduced cost licensing for external users using Filr only even though they have no access to GroupWise, Zen, etc. This is a dealbreaker for us.

Does anyone know differently or have a suggestion? Alternatively, can this be submitted as an enhancement request?