Admin questions come fast and furious to Expert on Demand Mat Newman

It's a busy two weeks for Mathew Newman when he fields questions on Lotus Notes/Domino troubleshooting as TechTarget's Expert on Demand. Many of the questions are from admins.

Mathew Newman has been a busy guy this week.

Aside from his role as a director for consulting firm ISW Development Pty Ltd., Newman has been the Expert on Demand for the past two weeks at TechTarget's Expert Answer Center, responding to questions on Lotus Notes/Domino troubleshooting. Many Notes/Domino users, particularly administrators, have been taking advantage of this opportunity to ask him questions on a range of topics.

Mathew Newman

SearchDomino.com has excerpted some of these questions and answers. You can read Newman's answers to all the questions but if you have a question, send it to him quick. He's only on call through end of the day Friday.

One question came from an administrator who wanted to automatically purge the inbox and sent e-mail folders for 800 Notes users. The admin asked if using the "Remove" option would be the best way to do that.

Newman's recommendation was to create a schedule agent to cycle through all the documents located in the specified folders, and delete any documents created before the selected date.

After experiencing issues with large attachments in users' mail files, another admin wanted to create a mailbox. agent that would e-mail to the IT department the user's name, attachment size and, if more than 5MB, whom it was sent to. The admin wondered a) if this were possible and b) whether this agent already existed.

Newman answered, "Agents cannot be run within the mail.box automatically." But he added the admin could create a "Before new mail arrives" or "After new mail has arrived" agent in the users' mail databases. The agent would examine the size of the attachments in the unprocessed documents and send the e-mail message indicated to another user or, alternatively, to a reporting database, specifically for the purpose you mentioned.

As a final note, Newman said that the admin should be aware it is possible to run reports through the mail reporting tools to identify the top 25 messages, senders or receivers by size in order to identify when and where the messages are transferred, but not necessarily the details of each individual message.

Another admin upgraded the Domino server from 6.5 to 6.5.4, then wrote that the scheduled agent in the application database was not running on its schedule. "The agent is enabled and the signer of the agent is also correct," the admin said. "When we run manually, the agent is running without any problems. What's the reason for this?"

Newman advised the admin to check the agent's execution security level on the agent properties. He said to:

  • Open the agent in Designer.
  • Access the agent's properties.
  • Check the "Security" tab.
  • Check the option under "Set runtime security level."

    "I have seen a number of situations when a scheduled agent that previously executed successfully no longer worked because it had defaulted to Do Not Allow Restricted Operations," Newman added. "Change this setting as appropriate and test again."

    Another admin wanted to know if it was possible to programmatically create a new Notes user.

    A new user can be added programmatically through LotusScript, Newman said. He said to check out the NotesRegistration class in Domino Designer help and the associated RegisterNewUser method of that class. Performing this operation from a Notes form is relatively straightforward, he said, if the form has all of the settings required by the RegisterNewUser parameters. Otherwise, the admin would have to add new fields to the form, prompt for the additional settings or write static options into the code itself.

    The last problem in this story concerns an administrator who upgraded his Domino server to R6.5.4 and installed Sametime on a different server. Now, he writes, he cannot do a clean shutdown (quit) for the server running Sametime. When it is shutting down HTTP services, it just stops.

    Newman said, "This is a known issue with Windows Server 2003 and the configuration you have mentioned. The stoppage is related to memory, and the amount of time that the tasks take to shut down while releasing memory back to the operating system. Given time (which you may not have), the tasks will eventually shut down and you will be able to restart the server."

    He added, "I have seen this issue come up repeatedly over the years, where Windows will not release the Domino service from the services list if you do a server shutdown using "Quit" or "Exit" from the Domino server console. The console window will just hang and the service will still be in the Task Manager, where Windows won't let you end it. My recommendation: If you are running Domino/Sametime as a Windows service, especially where the startup type is "Automatic," do not shut down the server using "Quit" or "Exit" at the console. Especially do not use the Restart Server command. Instead stop the service using the MMC."

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