My university uses Microsoft solution to provide email service to all students, faculties and staffs. So, they also use Microsoft Outlook Web Access as the web interface. Man, have you used Hotmail? Do you know how bad it is? How ugly is their Ajax code? How slow is their webpage? And, how frequently does it stick at a place and have no response?
Well, the IT department of my university just upgraded the Outlook Web Access. Before that, it is an ugly HTML page without any hi-tech stuff. But now, they added Ajax technology and some "new features". But, the new interface doesn't give me any good feeling.
One thing is that it forgot all settings I configured, even my email signature. I really don't understand why Microsoft claims that they can provide enterprise-level solutions. If you can't upgrade seamlessly, then it's definitely not enterprise-level. I don't know how the Microsoft server remember our settings. But it is pretty easy in Linux world - just making directories for every user and saving a configuration file over there. This solution won't forget anything unless the file is missing. Keep it simple and stupid - why doesn't Microsoft think in this way?
While I was editing settings, I found another bad design. When you configure a set of options, you will scroll down to set items one by one. Finally, you will reach the bottom of the webpage. But, the stupid Microsoft does NOT put a "save" button at the bottom. I had to scroll to the top to save the settings. Does Microsoft really consider the user-friendly issue when designing their products?
I really hate Microsoft solutions, it's expensive, bulky, slow and not user-friendly.