The Microsoft Groove and Microsoft SharePoint Workspace system is designed to facilitate Internet-based collaboration. The system consists of protocol clients and supporting management, relay, and data bridge servers. The following diagram provides a high-level overview of the system.
Figure 1: Overview of the Groove and SharePoint Workspace system
Protocol clients within the system can connect to each other through local area networks (LANs) or the Internet. The management server provides services for managing users of the system. The relay server provides services for protocol clients when direct peer-to-peer communications are not possible. The data bridge server enables integration with external applications.
Users of the system can create shared spaces and share those spaces with other users. A shared space can contain documents and tools, such as calendar, discussion, and meeting tools, and it is synchronized automatically between protocol clients. Members of a collaboration team can be part of the same organization or multiple, independent organizations. In addition, users can work either online or offline.