Trouble Shooting False New Mail Notification

Using a Notes 4.x client, you receive either visual or audible new mail
notification. When you open your mail file, however, there are no new
There are a number of circumstances that can cause you to receive false new
mail notification. Use the following information to troubleshoot this issue:

1. First, verify that you are using the correct Location document.Then, within
the Location document, verify that the Mail file field specifies your mail
file. (The Mail file field specifies which database your Notes client should
poll for new mail.)

2.In Notes 4.x, a sequence number is stored in the mail file and the NOTES.INI
file (NewMailSeqNum). The sequence number is incremented in the mail file when
new mail is received.

When polling for new mail, the Notes client compares the NewMailSeqNum variable
in the NOTES.INI file against the sequence number in the mail file. If the
number is different, a new mail indication is received. When you refresh your
mail view after receiving new mail but before the mail file is polled, you will
see new mail. However, the NewMailSeqNum NOTES.INI variable is not updated.
Thus, when the mail file is polled, you receive a new mail indication (with no
new mail) because the number kept in the mail file is different than the

When Notes is first set up, the NewMailSeqNum does not exist. When you access
your mail file for the first time, this variable is added to your NOTES.INI

If you remove the value of the NewMailSeqNum in the NOTES.INI and restart
Notes, this will re-synch the value stored in your mail file with the value
stored in your NOTES.INI.

NOTE: The polling interval issue has been reported to Lotus Quality
Engineering and an enhancement request has been submitted.

3. If your workstation is shared by multiple users (who switch location
documents but share the same NOTES.INI file), false mail notifications may
occur because the NewMailSeqNum is updated with the current mail file's
number. Therefore, if users are switching location documents (thereby pointing
to different mail files), the NewMailSeqNum in the NOTES.INI file and the
number in the currently chosen mail file will be out of synch.

4.Check for multiple NOTES.INI files. (Check both your local C: drive and
mapped drives.) The NewMailSeqNum in the NOTES.INI in use is compared against
the internal number in the mail file and is updated by the polling function.

5.In the NOTES.INI file look for an entry that begins either:


If either entry exists, comment it out - by inserting either a REM or a
semi-colon at the front of the line. (In once case, this resolved the problem
for a client that was getting mail notifications every two

6.If a user receives a mail-enabled document in which there is a
Readers field and the user is not listed in it, the user will correctly receive
a mail notification, but no new document will display in the views. You can try
to access the user's mail file from the server's workstation with the server's
ID. If the server is reader, the documents will be displayed. Another
troubleshooting method is to add a "Log_Mailrouting=30" line on the mail
server's NOTES.INI, and when a "false" mail notification arrives, check who the
sender is in the log or on the server's console

This was first published in November 2000

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