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Hide users within NAB

Is there an easy way to "hide" users within the NAB so that general Notes users cannot see them? For example, we have a number of accounts created for Sametime users to log into, also guest accounts for outside Web collaboration. These appear in our NAB as STuser1, STuser2, etc. Is there a way to keep them from appearing in the NAB address list?

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The easiest way to "hide" information from your general Notes population is to use the following process:

  1. Create a group that contains the users you do want to see one another (i.e., STuser1, STuser2...). Add "LocalDomainAdmins" and "LocalDomainServers" to this group (MOST IMPORTANT).

  2. Add a "Readers" field on the person form in the design of the Domino Directory.

  3. Edit the users you want to hide, and add the group mentioned in step 1 to your new readers field.

This will have the effect of allowing the Sametime users to "see" one another, while the general Notes population will not see those users in any address dialog.

Be aware, modifying the Domino Directory -- although a workaround -- is something you will have to keep tabs on, as every update to your server will require you adding the modification to the person document again. The users will remain hidden, but you will not be able to change the content of the "Readers" field until you place it back on the form in Designer.


Will this also disable the mail type ahead feature, as well as the capability to find them in the mail address dialog box? You keep the possibility to mail them by entering their fullname though.

—Patrick P.


Hiding the document using a "Readers" field in the Domino directory will HIDE the document from all features that a user may use to access that document. In the case of People, Group and Mail-in documents, this does include clicking the "Address" button on the Mail action bar, type-ahead addressing and of course, opening any view which contains that document.

—Mathew Newman, Lotus Instant Messaging/Sametime Expert


Can this be done with groups to hide the mass e-mail groups from the choices and look-up? I only want certain people to be able to e-mail the "entire company."

—Douglas D.


Using a "Readers" field provides the same functionality for any document in the Domino directory.

—Mathew Newman, Lotus Instant Messaging/Sametime Expert


I strongly recommend AGAINST reader fields in a large NAB. Reader fields make Notes basically re-index the views for each user/server/process every time they are accessed. In a large NAB this can take quite some time.



Wouldn't it be easier to modify the security setting for these users, remove "All Readers" and above and add the users and/or groups that should be able to see them? This is what we do for a lot of private groups in our NAB, usually setting it so only the Administrators group and members of the group itself that you're limiting access to. This way you don't have to modify your NAB, which can cause issues down the road during upgrades.

—Joni S.


As with almost everything in Notes Domino, there is always more than one way to skin a cat...

"Easier" is a perspective thing. The method I suggested means a simple addition to three forms in the Domino directory, including a "Readers" field in the Person, Group and Mail-in database forms. This method involves (for me) less than five minutes of work every four months (or thereabouts) to add the field to those forms. Any time I want to review who can use this document, it means looking at the content of this field.

The suggested alternative means opening the document, activating document properties, switching to the security tab, scrolling through the list to see who has a check-box next to their entry AND performing these steps EVERY TIME you need to review/edit who can "see" the document.

My method also has additional code to ensure that the (hidden/real) readers field is always populated with:

a. The selected entries,
b. LocalDomainServers, and
c. LocalDomainAdmins

Incase the modifier of the document "forgets" to include those entries, which of course have side effects for Replication and the ability for an Admin to "Repair/Recover" the document.

To get the best of both worlds, compute a display field to have "@Unique(@Trim($Readers:Readers))" while reviewing the document, and you can use my method OR your suggested method and the result is identical (i.e., the changes on the security tab will populate the $Readers field anyway, so why not use the built-in name - NB: Best Practice, ALWAYS use field names that are standard in Notes, Subject, Body, SendTo and $Readers are examples).

As for "Issues down the road," you can always look at the item list for the note (if you have forgotten to do the design change) and the Readers item will be listed in the same properties box that also displays document security.

BOTH methods produce the same result. One means extra work at upgrade time, one means extra work during every document review. Which method works for you?

—Mathew Newman, Lotus Instant Messaging/Sametime Expert


Doing this works great for the Lotus Notes client, but with iNotes it shows up a blank line in the address book.



Yes, one side effect (in the iNotes client), is that address look-ups will show a blank line where a document in the directory is secured. This is irrespective of the method used to "hide" the document (either through the Security tab, or the Readers field design addition).

I am not aware of any EASY change to the iNotes codebase to rectify this situation.

—Mathew Newman, Lotus Instant Messaging/Sametime Expert


We Notes developers all have issues, it seems, when someone finds another way to do what we have just described to someone -- myself included. But I have to side with Joni in this issue. It would be better to use the already available Readers field for the documents to avoid time costly update changes when updates come out. As for the maintenance of it, which Matthew hit on: all that is needed is a new view similar to the People view with one column added -- a Readers column with the following formula:

I just tried this and it works great. You can see at a glance who is allowed reader privilege at a glace for each document. You could even have a view that categorizes by this column. I am a strong promoter of the mantra "Don't reinvent the wheel -- just order new hubcaps."

—Ruth I.

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