(My) Perfect Exchange on Linux setup

Given the fact that most companies still use Microsoft Exchange as their preferred E-Mail and Collaboration solution, we (running Linux and/or MacOS) see ourselves confronted with the same problem: How to get E-Mails and Calendar entries with the least possible pain.

I want to share my current, well working, setup with you.

Choosing a client

I’ve chosen Mozilla Thunderbird as my preferred client on the Linux desktop for E-Mail and Calendar.


I went for the usual setup: IMAP and SMTP directly to the Exchange server. The only (at least known to me) area where this damn thing is actually standards compliant.


I use the Exchange Data Provider for Lightning for calendaring. Works like a charm. After using DavMail with all the ups and downs this is the most stable solution I’ve used so far on Linux. Can only recommend it.

Calendar syncing

This goes for Google Calendar and/or iCloud. Syncing is a major factor for me as I want to have at least read-only access on my work calendar while I’m on the road.

Also, I went for an extremely straight-forward setup. Using the Automatic Export Plugin for Thunderbird I just let it put a copy of my calendar exported to ICS into my Public folder in Dropbox. Using the “Public URL” feature I then subscribe to the calendar in read-only mode from Google Calendar and iCloud.

That’s it! The easiest to configure and maintain setup I ever had. Man am I happy :)