Category Archives: Lotus

Lotus Connections Customer Community and GCPC recap

Monday was the kick off meeting of the Lotus Connections Customer Community, the community was formed by IBM to help guide the future direction of Lotus Connections, and set priorities based on customers needs.  IBM shared the current plans for Connections 2.0, I can’t go in to any real detail here, but I can say the product looks like Connections will be getting some cool new features, and have tighter integration with the other products in the Lotus Family.   It was an interesting day spent with a number of other Connections customers, all at different points in adopting and deploying Connections, Monday evening the GCPC annual face to face meeting kicked off.  Tuesday the day began with a Keynote by Alistair Rennie VP Development and technical support  and Charlie Hill IBM Distinguished engineer, The began by reviewing last years council recommendations and how they were acted on by IBM.  A good part of their presentation was similar to what was presented last week at the Lotus Collaboration Summit followed by a look ahead at the next product release cycle.  Tuesday was focused on Notes and Domino, with Rob Ingram, Russ Holden, and Mary Beth Raven giving at look at plans for 8.0.1 and 8 Next.  Much of their presentation was similar to what was covered at the  Notes/Domino software design review last week in Westord (Nathan I am no lawyer, but it would seem we can talk), though less in depth. The last session of the day was a feature prioritization session for 8.0.1 and 8 next.  Grouped with other customers we worked through 6 categories of feature and enhancement requests, move the ones important to high priority, secondary priority, and trash the ones that we considered unimportant.  The catch was we had a limit as to the number of high priorities we could select, so it was a negotiation within each group to work out the features that were important to all to see in the next release.  Hopefully we got it right and the design team can work the high priority features in to the next releases. The rest of the week will be  focused on Quickr and Sametime, and at the end of the week, the Council will present the priorities for all of the products to IBM.  Unfortunately I am not able to be there the rest of the week, but I was able to sit down with some of the Sametime and Quickr teams and discuss future direction with them as well.

Domino Web Admin supports Firefox in 7.0.3

I don’t use the web client for administration that often, but on occasion the need arises, it  always bugs me that I have to leave Firefox and launch IE to use Web Admin.   This technote documents that as of 7.0.3 Firefox will be supported for the Web admin client.

Notes 8.0 Client Open mic call

Lotus support is hosting an open mic call on the Notes 8.0 Client on August 29th.  Technote 1268483 has all the details, as well as instructions to submit your questions in advance.

My view on Notes and Domino 8

So as was announced yesterday by Ed Brill, Mary Beth Raven, and many others by now Notes and Domino 8 will be available this Friday. Since last November I have been using Notes 8 almost exclusively, and early this year I moved myself over to a Domino 8 server to take advantage of the few features that require a Domino 8 Server. I have been through 11 Client builds, and 4 Server builds, and overall I would say IBM did a great job. Here are the highlights in my opinion: Notes Client 1. The new and improved UI – the client is much easier to navigate, many more tasks can be accomplished without changing views, and over all it is much more pleasant to work in then previous versions. 2. Mail Conversations – one of the best productivity enhancements in the client, I mainly use conversations in two ways, first it really shrinks down my inbox every morning when I can start at the end of a thread and very often never have to open any of the other messages in the thread. Second for the really long mail conversations I use the conversation mode to eliminate many of the older entries (lets face it everyone replies with history, no reason to save them all). 3. Dynamic Contacts – by default Notes now adds anyone you have contact with to a Recent Contacts view (up to 2000) allowing you to find these addresses via type ahead same as a contact in any other address book you have configured. This means people who sent you mail or even who were CC on e-mails sent to you can now be pulled up in type ahead. 4. The Sidebar – The day at a glance view is terrific, lets me see my day without having to open or switch to the calendar view. I love having the Sametime client embedded, one less application to launch, one less reason to leave or minimize Notes. I have also been using the Activities sidebar as I have been building and working on Connections, this is a great example of a Composite application used to extend the notes client. This is just the stuff that is out of the box, I am sure there are many more uses for the sidebar that are yet to be developed. 5. Ghosted Calendar entries – having initiations that are in your inbox now appear on your calendar in a different color is great, besides preventing me from double booking a slot or accepting the wrong meeting in a given slot, on more then one occasion it has also reminded me I had an invite that had not been acted on yet. 6. Productivity Tools – I have been using them, I have them as my default application for word, excel and powerpoint, I think this will be a tough sell in my organization to replace Microsoft Office, but then again the tools are nice and maybe the price is right. Domino Server 1. Out of Office agent as a service, say good bye to users setting the agent to run on local, setting it locally and not replicating, and any one of the 100 other tricks that caused problems with the Out of Office agent. Enable the OOA as a Service and let the server handle it. In addition once you enable the service you have the ability to set the OOA in hourly increments, if you only want it for part of a day. 2. Fast Restart – this one I am excited about, one of the most frustrating parts of a server crash is the time it takes to run NSD, depending on the server and the crash it can take up to 20 minutes, which is a long time when a server is down. Fast restart is the best of both worlds, the server can restart while the NSD completes. I have to say that my Beta servers have not crashed so I have not really played with this one, but when the day comes and it does happen hopefully it will work. One note of caution on this one see point # 3 in this post regarding memory requirements for Fast Restart 3. Policies – I have been told that 95% of the client settings can be configured via policy (in the process now of checking this) in additon policies can now be configured to “Set and Enforce” which will gray out the preference for the user. These are just my favorite features, there are many many more, check 8 Things to Like About Notes 8, Part 1 and 8 Things to Like about Notes 8, Part 2 as well as the Notes homepage for more information.

Help my Identity has been stolen….. or at least my ID file

Had an interesting experience yesterday at the Lotus Premium Support Seminar. On of my co-workers attended a lab session on using Server.Load, when he (and everyone else in the room) launched the Notes client on the lab machine, they were prompted for their password, only the ID file was mine. They were then given ID’s to use for the lab. Interestingly enough we recently had an onsite engagement with Lotus Field Support Services to some load testing in our environment, while they were there I know I had taken a configured Notes 7 client and copied it over to one of the IBM peoples machines, as we needed as many machines as possible to ramp up the load test, apparently that client was then taken and used to create an image duplicated on to all the machines in the lab. Now let me be clear about one thing, while my ID file was on the other machine, my password was never given out, and while I am sure that giving another person access to my id was not bet practice, it was on of those things you do when you are under pressure to get something done and take the easy way out, but needless to say I was surprised to find my ID file on a bunch of lab machines at a conference. I suppose lessons learned and I will prepare better the next time we have people coming on site who need access to systems.