First, a disclaimer: I do not use Lotus Notes Archiving. Instead, I use another method to invisibly move my finished work (emails, calendar, and tasks) to my archive. However, I serve many Lotus Notes users that use, want to use, or are forced to use Lotus Notes archiving. It is from these clients that I have learned a great deal about the relationship between archiving and lost productivity. This blog post is written for these people and it will consider the impact of poorly configured archiving and what you can do about it.

I received an email from a customer today asking me a question about email archiving:
"My company requires that I archive my mail for anything that is greater than 30 days old. Many of my lists and contexts have disappeared as a result. NOT GOOD. HELP!"

This kind of problem gives Lotus Notes a bad name

Before I describe the problem and a work-around, I'd like to share another more tragic story: Many years ago, I was hired by a large organization to deliver one of my productivity seminars. This organization had over 180,000 Notes users  and they wanted to learn how to use Lotus Notes more effectively; they wanted me to teach their people how to really get things done with Notes.

If you are familiar with David Allen's Getting Things Done (GTD) methodology or if you have follow my blogs for any period of time, you know the  importance of having a single "trusted system" in which to store your actionable information. I was delivering an in-house seminar to about 300 people from one organization and I was talking about the benefits of Lotus Notes and how well Notes works as my "trusted" system when a senior manager from the audience interrupted me:
"Sir, what you describe is fine, but I would never use Lotus Notes as my "trusted system" because I can't trust that Notes won't lose my important information!"

After the audience stopped applauding in agreement, I asked him why he felt that he couldn't trust Lotus Notes and he explained that his calendar and task information would automatically disappear after 90 days, convincing them that Lotus Notes is an untrustworthy (and generally despised) application.

The wind blew out of my sails; I had to agree with him. If my tasks and calendar items disappeared from my system,  I wouldn't trust Lotus Notes either. Fortunately, it doesn't have to be this way.

Continue Reading "Thoughts on email archiving (Admins: Here's how to keep your users from hating you or tell you Lotus Notes sucks)" »

With today's release of eProductivity 1.81 out the door, I took some time to play with the widgets in Notes 8.51. This is really neat. I was able to easily configure two widgets in Notes and I even have them now floating on my desktop as their own windows. How cool is that?

Here's a preview of the Today view and the All by Context views:
The new The new

While I'm testing this with eProductivity, you can use these steps with any view in any database in Lotus Notes.

I've documented the steps I used to accomplish this here.

Lotus Knows it’s in Fast Company

Monday, October 19th, 2009
From the title of this blog, you know that Lotus Software is the cornerstone of my productivity toolkit. Notes is the first app I load in the morning and the last one I shut down. Lotus knows it's in fast company -  some of the best and brightest (not to mention, most productive) people on the planet use and love Lotus Software.

Now, everyone "knows".

Well done, Lotus Marketing.


Rock your work with Lotus Software

I've been using Lotus Notes for a few years (Since R2) and over the past 16 years, Notes has become the core of my information, communication, collaboration, and action management systems. I started using Notes back in the days of 2400 Baud SmartModems. One of the reasons I used, recommended, and deployed Notes for my clients at the time was because it allowed people to work locally (off-line) and it hid the fact that the modem technolgy was slow and phone jacks were hard to find. (Remember, this was back in the days when you had to carry screw drivers and alligator clips with you to the hotel.) I was reminded of this when my colleague pinged me in SameTime, from 30,000 feet:


Short story: 8.5.1 upgrade was fast and easy but Windows Update killed my server.

The long version: Saturday afternoon, I decided to upgrade one of my development servers from 7.04 to 8.5.1 today. I am pleased to say that as far as I can tell the upgrade was easy and fast. Once I backed up my data, it only took me about 10 minutes to install 8.5.1 and let the server do its thing at startup. I then restarted  the Domino service  and all appeared fine. How's that for a seamless upgrade? Sweet!

The last step was to reboot the server to confirm that the Domino service would restart automatically. As I went to do this, I noticed the pop-up from Microsoft, telling me I had Windows updates pending. I decided to go ahead and apply these and reboot.

That's when the fun began.

Continue Reading "10 Min to upgrade to Domino 8.5.1; 20+ hours to recover" »

I recently upgraded my Domino Mail server to 7.04* Today I noticed screens full of the following error on the console:

Error Updating view '#XXXXXX' in MAIL\username/nsf: Entry not found in index

According to this thread in the Notes/Domino 6 & 7 Forum, this is a known issue with 7.04.

One post provides steps, apparently from IBM, to fix the problem.

Another references a HotFix  704HF37 that is supposed to fix the problem.

All of the links to this hotfix appear to be broken. Has anyone seen this problem and/or a fix for it?

* I'm waiting for Domino 8.51 Gold and for my add-in tasks to be certified for 8.5