Category Archives: Domino

A solution for Quickr clients who just want to keep working…

keep-calm-and-keep-working-32As mentioned below, IBM Lotus Quickr was discontinued in 2013 and its end of support date is now set at September 30, 2016. Anyone renewing maintenance from this month on will have a decision to make in the near term about whether it’s worth the investment, what is next, and what solution fits your situation(s) as a replacement for the longest-lived web-based document management solution out there. That’s marketing speak for good, but long in the tooth.

Here are my general thoughts on your replacement options. A full analysis is always recommended, of course, before you dive into any of these. Here you go:

  • If you have customization or applications, they will need to be rebuilt in a target system of your choosing. The smoothest path is Domino, but if you’re not a Domino shop it’s time to start planning the development effort.
  • If you’re ready to retire your Quickr places but need the data, SNAPPS has a solution to export places to the file system. (info@snapps.com)
  • If you are a Connections customer and using Connections Content Manager (CCM), IBM has a migration tool to move Libraries. It takes significant expertise to run and only brings over limited content, but it’s a start.
  • If you are a Connections customer and not using CCM, or would rather use Files and Activities, a custom solution for migration is the way to go. Contact SNAPPS for information.
  • If you are not a Connections customer, or are and don’t like the limitations in CCM, and either do or don’t have Domino, DOCOVA has a new offering for you. DOCOVA is a fully featured document management system with migration paths from Quickr, and even a path to a non-Domino version. This path lets you keep working with your content at a high level of security, customization and robust management. I’ve included their announcement video below for reference. Enjoy!

All good things must come to a late middle: Quickr End of Support Update

QuickrLogoTinyAs prognosticated in a previous post (yay for alliteration!) IBM has announced the withdrawal of support for Quickr:

Effective September 30, 2016, IBM® will withdraw support for the following part numbers licensed under the IBM International Program License Agreement:

Program number Program release name
5724-S31 IBM LOTUS QUICKR FOR DOMINO
5724-Z67 IBM LOTUS QUICKR FOR WEBSPHERE
5725-A17 IBM LOTUS QUICKR CONNECTORS

So, start your clocks (if you hadn’t already in April 2013 when marketing was withdrawn)! A year for hundreds of companies with hundreds of thousands of users to plan and execute on a migration strategy, if you worry about such things as supported software. In some cases (such as regulated companies, SarBox, etc.) you have to, and will have quite a bit of planning ahead. High level, you will have to concern yourself with:

  1. Analysis of your current environment and usage patterns
  2. Quantification of customization, task and calendar patterns, and priority level
  3. Assessment of other in-house document solutions, or extranets if that is your use case
  4. Evaluation of available options from third parties – Microsoft, IBM, DOCOVA, custom
  5. Retirement / attrition planning and communications
  6. Development of a migration plan and communications
  7. Acquisition of licenses for a replacement platform / solution
  8. Technical services for migration of maximum available data
  9. Training and user adoption strategies on the new platform

Just another year in the life of a CIO!

You don’t know what you don’t know. You know?

StethoscopeOne of the most often asked questions about Lotus Quickr in its golden years has been “what do I have?” — meaning, on the server and in the places. This is the case with any self-service platform and has been especially pertinent with Quickr, as IBM has unintentionally made some of its migration requirements quite difficult to get your head around. A basic for-instance: the requirement that all workflows be complete before starting to migrate a place. Super, makes sense. Except that there’s no way to tell this in the product, no “outstanding workflow” view, and no simple way of determining for which places, rooms, and forms workflow is even turned on!

There are a myriad of other “requirements” and a list of things that do and don’t migrate to take into account — if only you could quantify and identify them. If you have 100 places, you likely have 500 or more databases including rooms. So in 500 databases, can you easily identify where you have lists? Active calendars? Tasks? HTML forms? None of these items migrate, so you probably at least want to know where they are in order to interface with the managers of these places to determine how active and important they are. At best, you’d want to produce a list of them, identify which are active within a certain time period, and through the application of a few algorithms be able to classify a Quickr place as a good, moderate, or bad candidate for migration — and then do the same for your archiving strategy.

HTML forms are my next best example. If you have done any customization in the 14 years you’ve been able to, you may have some of these powerful things lying around. They don’t migrate to CCM…or do they? In fact, it’s not impossible. Programmatically, you can convert the content in an HTML form to a simple form, then it can be migrated (assuming there’s attachments involved). The migration of simple forms to CCM is hoky, but it can be done…with some volume limits.

Having spent years making Quickr efficient, lean and mean for large deployments, I have access to SNAPPS tools that slightly modified can tell us just these things. Depending on volume, in fairly rapid fashion I can tell you how ready you are for a CCM migration, how much work there is to do, and estimate the percentage of your Quickr content that will be preserved. It’s part magic tools, part intuition, and part experience, like any in depth analysis.

I mention all this because I’m currently in different stages of this kind of analysis with four Quickr clients, all of whom just don’t quite know what they have. That’s the common factor, and the result of years using a powerful, self-serve, customizable platform like Quickr. In fact for two clients, I’m even running demonstration projects to migrate a single place to CCM in order to show them the results, but in a safe lab environment using LDAP mapping to a lab directory. I’ll be doing a lot of those next year as more companies are figuring out what they want to do with Quickr. And, I intend to post some of the results here as I go. For now, it’s the larger environments that are starting to get concerned with what I’ve predicted as an April 2016 end of support.

But don’t worry, with enough money you can keep that going too… 🙂

Question of the year: what to do with Lotus Quickr

QuickrLogoTinyIt’s been 16 months now since the end of marketing for IBM’s Lotus Quickr 8.5.1 (a less than desirable move, IMO, not that I’m biased). In that time, I have fielded questions from conference audiences and increasingly this year, clients and Quickr customers about what they should be planning to do. Sometimes, with Quickr applications or deployments in the thousands and tens of thousands of users.

As I’ve mentioned before, support will go on for a while – most likely guess is now until April 2016 – but not the kind of support you get with a current product. More of a “broken/fix if really necessary” kind of support, with fixpacks having slowed down to one every 3-4 months instead of monthly, support moving overseas (from me anyway), and barely any resources applied to anything but Severity 1 and 2 cases.

To answer those customers and inquiries, I’ve tried to help them classify themselves by their use cases with the following as a general guideline. Think of it as a 4-lane highway (apologies for the inside joke for old timers):

You are a: Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4
You use Quickr for: Basic document storage Simple forms, room and folder security Placetypes with UI, custom forms Business applications
Your best strategy is: Evaluate CCM for complete migration Consider simplification then CCM + Domino Possibilities: CCM, Connections customization, Forms Experience Builder, WebSphere applications Perform more detailed analysis and planning to determine path to replacement product(s) or SaaS offerings

In any of these cases, it’s quite possible you would have to combine strategies. As well, it’s always a good time to evaluate whether running your own operation with Quickr (which was fairly easy for most clients) translates well into running your own operation with Connections Content Manager (CCM) and all the admin, WebSphere, hardware and skills that entails. It may in fact be time to consider outsourcing to a SaaS provider like IBM SmartCloud or, on the application end of the spectrum, Intuit QuickBase. It’s important to ask these kinds of questions:

  • Do you use Quickr for an extranet?
  • Do you require more granular security?
  • Do you require greater use of forms?
  • Do you use Quickr for business processes?
  • Do you rely on more complex workflow?

Answers to these, and a degree of importance for each, will help you determine readiness of your Quickr environment – or part of it – for migration to “something else”.

Then there are those who just want to dump their files into SharePoint and start fresh with something new for the external collaboration efforts. I don’t blame you…it seems easy. It isn’t, but it seems that way. Quickr doesn’t have a native or even easily implemented programmatic way to export its contents (a conscious decision by IBM years ago) so third party solutions are part of the equation. There are very few, including a PDF-generating service I can offer, to get content from Quickr to the file system. What you do with it from there is up to you… 🙂

Looking back at the table above, I’ve found that in many cases, customers really have no idea what they have on their Quickr servers in terms of customizations. That’s because it was so easy to import an HTML form, create simple forms, or apply a custom theme (OK that last one wasn’t easy in the last version). And because o this, it’s important to review the server’s setup, purpose, and survey the place managers as part of a “discovery” of what they have…to come up with the best strategy.

When you next evaluate your Quickr strategy, feel free to use the above as a guide, and of course feel free to contact me for help doing it.

Been a while since I posted on a fix, or at all for that matter

So IBM released Fixpack 43 for Quickr Domino yesterday, and as I’ve not posted on the topic since Fixpack 36 more than a year ago…well just a reminder that you should be updating your servers with fixpacks as frequently as possible. With Quickr being EOM’d last year and with support set to go through April 30, 2016 (extensions available for $$$$ through April 30, 2019), you can imagine that the support organization at IBM is easier to work with when you’re on the latest version and fix.

Whoa. Just thinking about that last date. As of April 30, 2019, Quickr will be a 20-year-old (plus one month) web-based collaboration product. Too bad they’re letting it go, I’d have bought it a beer one year later.

Also new with Fixpack 43, IBM has baked in the new qptool migration code to allow you to migrate some content to Connections Content Manager. More on that later, though you can go read my Engage 2014 presentation that covers the topic including warnings and caveats.

That said, I thought I’d share my setups with you — the ones I run in development and staging, and the ones my clients now run.

  • Domino 8.5.3 FP5 (supported, just not documented FP level)
  • Quickr 8.5.1 FP42/43 specific to Domino 8.5.3
  • LDAP of some sort, as I never run Native Domino authentication
  • Internet sites documents are used, so I can compress outgoing files like CSS and JS widgets
  • Transaction logging on, circular, 4096 MB
  • DAOS on, to a separate drive, for attachments over 64k, don’t get greedy
  • View rebuilds on a separate drive
  • A few hundred other settings, OS performance tweaks, antivirus exclusions, etc. appropriate to the environment.

So here’s a list of what IBM has done with Quickr Domino in the past year, in case you’re interested. About 10 of these fixes are “mine”.

FP 8.5.1.43

03/20/2014

No SPR

Under certain circumstances, not all users get migrated to Connections when migrating to Connections.

02/12/2014

RSOI9EGDUP

LO78374

Under certain circumstances, anonymous preview of a document could result in an “internal server error” followed by a “file type not supported” error.

*please note, this fix requires the notes.ini setting QuickrAnonPreview=1.

02/12/2014

RJDT9EC22W

LO78310

Notify those responsible when tasks are assigned and completed setting when the task is in a room does not notify the assignee.

02/12/2014

PPOR9FBJY5

LO78618

When browser is set to Norwegian, cannot select a date from either Calendar or Tasks.

02/12/2014

RTIN98LPYJ

LO75748

Using LDAP to Domino, adding a flat group using “qptool addmember “ will result in notifications being sent to this group to fail.

02/12/2014

GAKI9F5HVZ

LO78562

Customer specific issue : Server Crashes on a  Room database when “qptool replicamaker” runs.

FP 8.5.1.42

12/12/2013

PPOR9ABHDU

LO76522

After upgrading from 8.2, some documents are displayed in a small area of the page making it unreadable.

12/12/2013

GAKI96DJV9

LO74678

When using Internet Site Documents against Domino Native, customer has problems uploading Emails and Files via Notes Connector

12/12/2013

No SPR

Under certain circumstances, a place manager or owner could be prompted with a basic authorization dialog when deleting members from a place.

12/12/2013

ACHG98K95B

LO75704

Preview of a specific document in a customer’s place produces an error “File Type Not Supported”.

12/12/2013

No SPR

Added support for Microsoft Office 2013 in the ActiveX Upload control.

12/12/2013

JMAC9DD28J

LO77858

Calendar entries in a Room get sent to all calendar subscribers even if a user doesn’t have access to the Room.

12/12/2013

No SPR

When using Domino Native authentication and have added multiple groups to a Folder ACL, when saved, may lose one of the groups.

FP 8.5.1.41

10/28/2013

PPOR97KDND

LO75255

Issues with Swedish characters when creating new users and passwords.

10/28/2013

JMAC9C4SLB

LO77297

Attachment name with apostrophe displayed incorrectly when ActiveX round trip editor is enabled.

10/28/2013

HMON975JHH

LO75066

Un-reproducible Domino server crash with the top call of the crash stack “nquickplace.QuickrWS::ClbDynamicDateValue::~ClbDynamicDateValue”

10/28/2013

No SPR

When saving a Microsoft Office document based on a custom form that has the option to only save the document in the Index, the document is saved to the Index, but also appears in the Table of Contents for that place/room. 

10/28/2013

No SPR

Some documents in a folder are not displaying in connectors when a checked out document is locked by a user whose name contains Unicode characters.

10/28/2013

GAKI99JFRA

LO76204

The Quickr Domino server my crash when clicking the Members link when using EMM.

09/27/2013

PPOR9AZK9X

LO76809

Under certain circumstances, after creating a new Page, the About tab does not display.

09/27/2013

No SPR

Under certain circumstances, in a Folder, the menu New Folder and Folder Options are lost once a page is added to that folder.

09/27/2013

PPOR9B8G9Y

LO76896

When a user is a Reader in a Folder protected by ACL and that user chooses Place Actions / New , they are prompted with a basic authentication dialog.

09/27/2013

PPOR9AZEAZ

LO76804

In Connectors, a user might not see all places they are a member of when in the Add Place dialog.

09/27/2013

RTIN9BQPCV

LO77131

Quickr modifies the notes.ini variable $h_hostname with every request.

08/27/2013

No SPR

When entering a place, if there are many items in the TOC, the TOC doesn’t scroll to the top automatically.

08/27/2013

DWHN9AJCZJ

LO76605

When selecting [All Members] as the membership of a room, those members do not get a link to the room in the TOC.

08/27/2013

JMAC9A5QNE

LO76468

For places that still use the Drag and Drop applet, using Java 7 greater than update 21 prompts a 2nd time saying that the jar hasn’t been signed.

08/27/2013

GAKI98DJTS

LO75635

When the Quickr Server has a different date format then the browser, Advanced Search By Date may not return the correct results.

08/27/2013

MBJZ8SD9SL

LO71940

When using SiteMinder, pressing Logout may not perform the actual logout functionality.

(see fix MBJZ8SD9SL in “Additional Information for special fixes” section)

08/02/2013

DWHN999JXD

LO76093

When within a Forum or a Forum Topic, choosing Place Actions -> New -> {document type} the Location will be in the Forum or Topic, it should be Library.

08/02/2013

MMOI979NNH

LO75116

Some inbound SMTP messages from Outlook clients do not display properly in Quickr.

08/02/2013

RSOI95REDS

LO74377

When a Place Manager opens a document checked out by another user in Connectors, the original document opens and any changes get saved back removing the other user’s changes.

07/10/2013

TMAI98T4K4

LO75829

Business cards do not display when hovering over the user’s link in a Room.

07/10/2013

PPOR98TL2B

LO75281

What’s New HTML email notifications do not contain hyperlinks to the document

(see fix PPOR98TL2B in the “Merging Notification Template Updates” section)

07/10/2013

GAKI96MLCU

LO74799

In Internet Explorer 8.0.7, Quickr Folders display incorrectly.

07/10/2013

TMAI98MD2S

LO75754

When viewing a page with an attached .xlsm file, it is referenced as an “Unknown Document Type”.

07/10/2013

PPOR98TL2B

LO75281

Using a specific customer place, Quickr on Domino 853 will crash when retrieving the contents of the TOC via Notes Connector.

FP 8.5.1.40

06/19/2013

PPOR973DZ8

LO75009

Certain Swedish characters are not displaying properly in Email notifications.

06/19/2013

ZKUN96UFZS

LO74900

Emails received into Quickr from Hotmail are not displayed correctly due to incorrect iframe height.

06/19/2013

DWHN8XMDMX

LO71359

Italian translation fixes.

06/19/2013

HMON97WNX8

LO75401

In the Versions tab of a document, accent marks are not maintained in the Summary of Changes for each version.

06/19/2013

GAKI97QK5D

LO75329

Issues with a customer specific Imported HTML document.

06/19/2013

RSOI98SCGM

LO75832

With the Quickr server set to a European locale and the qpconfig settings <allow_editing_mailed_in> and <attachment_times_for_mailin> are set, uploading a file through connectors causes the server to crash.

06/19/2013

TMAI98T4K4

LO75635

LO75829

Advanced Search by Date when Quickr server is set to a European locale results in an error on the Domino Console and no search results.

FP 8.5.1.39

05/23/2013

No SPR

Updates to the qp2 ActiveX control.

05/23/2013

RSOI96ND6D

LO74814

On Linux, the Quickr server may crash when entering 208 char or more characters in an input field.

(see fix RSOI96ND6D in “Additional Information for special fixes” section)

05/23/2013

PPOR973G9E

LO75011

Under certain circumstances, an external user notification does not contain a link to the place.

05/23/2013

DTRR8LJM53

LO63711

In room membership, a group cannot be added or expanded when the group name contains a # character in the middle of the name.

(see fix DTRR8LJM53 in “Additional Information for special fixes” section)

05/23/2013

RTIN95GQFS

LO74239

Using the Quickr API, the RemoveMember call no longer functions.

05/23/2013

RSOI969KJ6

LO74650

When sending a link, ampersands (&) displays incorrectly in the notifications.

05/23/2013

DWHN97SAZX

LO75361

When an admin user publishes content from a Quickr place to a Filenet Custom Library, the document metadata gets transferred but the content is truncated to 0KB. The actual document appears in the Filenet CE Library, but it has no actual content.

04/25/2013

HMON962J76

LO74550

In FireFox when going to the next page of a multiple page search result, the page is never displayed.

04/25/2013

No SPR

In certain situations the Quickr server may crash not providing call stack information in the NSD, the situation is known as “truncated stack”.

04/25/2013

MMOI95JQ49

LO74279

Under certain conditions downloading the attachment to an Imported Office Document sends the generated html file instead of the actual document.

(see fix MMOI95JQ49 in “Additional Information for special fixes” section)

FP 8.5.1.38

04/05/2013

DTRR93ZHY8

LO73519

Quickr 8.5.1 on Domino 8.5.3 does not acknowledge the qpconfig parameter <session_token_timeout>

04/05/2013

DWHN94PDUS

LO73849

When sending a Notification, if there are invalid email addresses, the list of invalid email addresses is presented as an error in the Notification dialog.  The user can then fix the invalid addresses and send again without knowing that the valid email address actually did get sent.

(see fix DWHN94PDUS in “Additional Information for special fixes” section)

04/05/2013

MMOI92EK53

LO72731

When a document has many versions, only the first 100 are displayed.

(see fix MMOI92EK53 in “Additional Information for special fixes” section)

04/05/2013

KLIU8BX5GM

Certain non-English characters cause the Members Page to show the user as No Access even though they do have the correct access that was assigned.

04/05/2013

DWHN8XMDMX

LO71359

Fix several Italian translation issues.

04/05/2013

RTIN95YP8M

LO74495

Domino server crash when cleaning up temporary files.

04/05/2013

DAMC95QHQF

LO74365

Sending mail to a Group which contains a subgroup with an Internet email address results in mail being sent twice to some users

(see fix  DAMC95QHQF in “Additional Information for special fixes” section)

04/05/2013

WBSI8U4957

LO74271

When sending a Link or Notification from a Folder or Document protected by ACL and selected to send to all members of the place, the mail would go to all members, even though they did not necessarily have rights to the Folder or Document.

03/12/2013

HMON947RE7

LO73604

Using ‘qptool changemember’ or Adminp, changing a Group name does not work as expected.

03/12/2013

HHIE952359

LO73967

A Room can not be opened from a link in the What’s New Page if the LotusQuickr context root is changed.

03/12/2013

MMOI8ZRTER

LO72491

“Error Opening Document – The Local File Is Locked And Cannot Be Replaced.” error message when trying to open the same file multiple times through Connectors when using a Custom Form and versioning.

03/12/2013

RTIN92RJ74

LO73041

When using ActiveX and create a Page, select to send a notification, click “Save and Check In”, the Attachment ActiveX box displays over the Notification dialog.

03/12/2013

DAMC94HL45

LO73764

‘qptool changemember’ clears the Policy assigned to a Place.

03/12/2013

MMOI8R5UU9

DWHN93YFBR

LO73500

LO67105

Folder security in Rooms does not always work as expected.

03/12/2013

TJOR94LN84

LO73788

HTTP 404 error occurs when downloading an Imported File Document that has a single quote in its filename.

03/12/2013

HMON8LYNXP

LO64177

If a Document based on a Custom Form has a Date Popup that is left blank, the Connectors show the date properties as 12/31/1969.

03/12/2013

MMOI95MQT4

LO74332

Issues creating a Calendar Entry on the day before and the day Daylight Saving take affect.

03/12/2013

RSOI8TAJWT

LO68733

When editing Site Administration\Other Options page, an orphaned draft document gets saved if you close browser before saving or cancelling your changes.

02/26/2013

CAML94HSTP

LO73768

Statistics for Templates are missing from Place Administration / Statistics.

02/26/2013

CRAY86WJPX

LO73391

You will get a javascript error when your LotusQuickr directory is differently named and you delete a Place.

02/26/2013

HMON92YT3W

LO73156

Room entries and updated place statistics do not work as expected when in a clustered environment.

02/26/2013

ASHH946B7G

LO73571

When using Domino Native Directory, the Notification option “Notify All Members Of This Place” does not send to a user whose mail system is Internet Mail.

02/26/2013

RSOI94VHHN

MMOI93KTDS

LO73332

LO73932

When creating a Custom Form with a field named with a long title (more than 200 characters), when filling out the form, may crash the server.

 

*note: For existing Custom Forms with long Field titles (title’s length is greater than 230 characters), the field should be deleted and re-added.

FP 8.5.1.37

02/12/2013

DAMC94UH5U

LO73914

The “What’s New” page is blank, even when there is new or updated content after a room is created.

02/11/2013

DTRR949H5F

LO73645

Send Notification checkbox is not unchecked after Inherit Membership is de-selected when creating a Room.

02/11/2013

DWHN94DHWG

LO73678

The Attachment field is not mandatory when creating an Imported File document when using ActiveX.

02/11/2013

PPOR94LEKS

LO73777

When adding members to a document,  focus is lost in the Filter field if you type and then wait for the results and then continue typing

02/11/2013

PPOR94GFBT

LO73732

When selecting Notify from the Members screen / More Options dropdown, the notification screen will not notify you if you don’t put any names in either the to/cc/bcc fields and then send.

02/11/2013

HMON94PQTF

LO73864

Fix a Server crash where the crash from the NSD happens in HuUiDoc::RestoreAuthors.

02/01/2013

DTRR93ZHY8

LO73519

The qpconfig.xml option <session_token_timeout> does not work correctly.

Note: this issue is specific to Quickr 8.5.1 on Domino 8.5.3

02/01/2013

GAKI8YXCW4

LO72042

An email delivered to a place that contains no paragraph break may not wrap or scroll in the rich text editor.

02/01/2013

TJOR8V8MKV

LO69964

All-day Events created in the Calendar shows on the day before the event in the recipient’s Notes Calendar.

02/01/2013

HHIE9477VD

LO73572

The text for the Show Member Link option within the Customize/Basics is inconsistent between the main room and sub-rooms.

02/01/2013

YXIO937BF8

LO73250

Imported HTML documents from older versions of Quickr are changed to Uploads during migration to Quickr 8.5.1.

02/01/2013

JSHN8J4T8R

LO61867

When configured, the ADMINP task does not remove Place Members on a Quickr server configured with an LDAP directory.

02/01/2013

DAMC92MNQV

LO72973

Mailed-in Documents with multiple attachments do not display correctly from the browser client.

(see fix DAMC92MNQV in “Additional Information for special fixes” section)

02/01/2013

DWHN8XMDMX

LO71359

Fix several Italian translation issues.

02/01/2013

MMOI8ZDU4P

LO72310

When the qpconfig.xml setting for versioning is set to implicit, the Replace File dialog does not have the versioning option checked.

02/01/2013

TJOR8EAUGQ

LO58728

Fix a Server crash where the crash from the NSD happens in CGI::DecodeURLEncodedContent.

02/01/2013

RTIN8RFRS8

LO67285

Fix a Server crash where the crash from the NSD happens in NBlock::Unlock.

 

New Kid on the Social Block

Jerald MahurinTo say Jerald Mahurin is a “new kid” is a bit misleading. Heck, he’s older than me and I’m practically antediluvian. However after nearly 20 years in the industry, having been my instructor when I first learned LotusScript in 1995, then with SNAPPS for the past ten years and currently its Vice President, it’s my pleasure to welcome Jerald to the not-so-yellow-verse community of IBM Collaboration Solutions bloggers.

His first article is a tutorial-level undertaking, in which he shares the fruits of his labor creating custom branding for IBM Connections Communities. This is a 10-printed-page article just to get you started

He’s promised me the next one will be shorter, but personally I like having a resource out there that is as thoroughly documented as this article. It took weeks of experimentation and wiki-diving, reverse engineering and Voodoo incantations to come up with the consolidated procedure he describes.

So welcome Jerald, and keep it coming! Now go on over to SociallyCurious.com and say hello!

IBM Partners SNAPPS and SWING Software Join Forces

snapps_swing

May 17, 2013, Overland Park, KS: Strategic Net Applications, Inc. (SNAPPS) has inked both reseller and OEM partner agreements with Croatia-based SWING Software to bring greater reach and integration expertise to SWING’s success in the document integration and publishing field. Both firms are long-time IBM Business Partners. SNAPPS has joined a handful of resale partners and is one of two OEM partners worldwide, according to SWING. With its first OEM product offering, SnappArchive™, SNAPPS has integrated SWING’s PDF Convertor engine into IBM’s Lotus Quickr as a permanent archiving solution.

According to SNAPPS president and CEO Rob Novak, “The partnership with SWING Software strengthens our commitment to IBM customers by bringing them best of breed solutions, great integration and customization. Our business is all about productivity in the collaboration space, and working with SWING allows us to offer customers more ways to be productive.”

SWING’s PDF Convertor is designed for users, administrators and developers to enhance IBM’s Notes and Domino with PDF export capabilities. For end users, it adds a simple point-and-click interface. Administrators can schedule server based exports, while developers have access to a rich API to create integrated solutions. The flagship product is used for archiving, sharing outside the firewall, discovery, and records management and retention policy purposes. SNAPPS now resells PDF Convertor and will build custom solutions for customers using the APIs.

“We are very excited to partner with SNAPPS, a leading solution provider for IBM collaboration platforms,” says David Jakelic, CEO of SWING Software. “As the areas of expertise and portfolios of our two companies complement each other perfectly, we believe this partnership will result in top-class solutions for our customers.”

Both SNAPPS and SWING Software have been long time IBM Business Partners, recognized for their contributions to the market through products, consulting and education. Combined their solutions and services have reached more than 2,000 companies worldwide, and the partnership enhances their ability to service those customers as well as new ones.

About SWING Software. SWING Software delivers document integration and publishing software to over 1,000 organizations worldwide. Its solutions uniquely combine key collaborative platforms and standard document formats, making document production, publishing, and distribution processes more efficient.

About SNAPPS. Strategic Net Applications, Inc (SNAPPS) has been an IBM Business Partner since 1997, serving customers worldwide. Known for its work with IBM’s Domino, Sametime, Quickr, and Connections, SNAPPS offers deep integration and customization services, collaboration strategy consulting, and technical education to its clients and conference attendees. CEO Rob Novak, an IBM Champion since 2011, has published several articles, co-authored numerous books and white papers, and serves as principal consultant to global organizations.

SNAPPS can be reached at www.snapps.com, +1-913-440-0000, or info@snapps.com.

# # #

SnappLinks for IBM Connections adds Scribd support

scribd

 

 

No, that’s not a typo! On the heels of our announcement of SlideShare® support, SNAPPS has added support for Scribd® document embedding in SnappLinks™, its innovative add-on for IBM® Connections® blogs and wikis.

Scribd is the world’s largest digital library where people can publish, discover, and read books and documents of all kinds on the web or any mobile device. Millions of books and documents have been contributed to Scribd by the community and this content reaches an audience of 100 million people around the world every month.

Embedding Scribd documents is just as easy as SlideShare – the scribd.com website has a version of each document with an Embed link. Clicking that link gives you options for size, pagination, height and width and generates the embed code.

SnappLinks™ gives you a single button in the editor to paste in the Scribd code, immediately creating embedded rich content.

SnappLinks brings color and functionality to IBM Connections editors

SnappLinks brings both color and functionality to IBM Connections editors

Scribd is unique in that due to the nature of the media it gives you a full-screen reading option. We’ve tried this in Connections and it makes for a very clean, highly consumable reading experience.

Why embed a Scribd document in Connections? Simple, really.

  • No need to upload content to Connections
  • Have private conversations about public documents
  • Take advantage of a growing platform’s technology

Scribd support is, as of today, included in SnappLinks for IBM Connections along with SlideShare, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Google Maps, Wikipedia and email links. Contact info@snapps.com for a demo or pricing information.

Sticking with Quickr a While? Some Suggestions

QuickrLogoTinyAs you contemplate the document-management-collaboration-teamspace-workflow-process world in the coming months and years, it’s likely that many of you will want to wring everything you can out of your investment over the past 14 years (that’s right, 1999) in Lotus Quickr and its previous married and maiden names.

I’ve heard from companies who are planning to migrate to Connections Content Manager 4.5 (coming soon to a server near…me), and some that plan to migrate in and out to everything from PDFs (we do that) to Sharepoint (uh, huh) to IBM ECMs and other collaborative platforms like Liferay.

But for many, sticking with Quickr Domino for the foreseeable future is a very valid choice. Your users know it well and don’t need training, or use the Quickr Connectors religiously, or you have a customization in place that conforms to paragraph 17 section 42 subsection d of the corporate style guide. Whatever the reason, if you intend to maintain a Quickr Domino server I have a few technical and business suggestions to bring and keep you up to date.

Internet Sites Documents

Starting with an earlier fixpack of Quickr 8.5.1 (currently 37), Quickr officially began to support Domino’s Internet Site Documents. Prior to this, we all used the Web Configuration document and standard MSSO / LtpaToken combination. And if you did, it’s not likely you switched because things are working. Switch. Two reasons — if you are still on Domino 8.5.1 (see below) you can add a custom header to provide better support for IE9 by putting it into compatibility mode. But more importantly, when using Internet Site documents, you have the option to have the server automatically compress (gzip) files from the file system as they are fed to the browser, cutting down traffic. And Quickr traffic, and these files, number in the hundreds. Multiply this by hundreds or thousands of users and this represents a significant savings and performance boost.

Domino – Upversion

Starting with Quickr 8.5.1 Fixpack 34, the team separated the Dojo installation to the point where Quickr no longer depended on the Domino Dojo version 1.3.2 being in a specific directory. Don’t get this wrong – Quickr still uses Dojo 1.3.2, but it installs its own copy. This has made the Quickr server more independent from the Domino version, meaning…it’s more likely we’ll see Quickr supported on Domino 9 when the time comes. (That is not an official or even informed statement, it’s just technically more feasible.) So, upgrade Domino to 8.5.3 (FP1, HF618 specifically) and when doing so, be sure you understand that there are two fixpack code streams now – and install the Quickr fixpack for Domino 8.5.3 going forward.

Fixpacks – Do Them

Quickr fixpacks are released every month. I suggest a maintenance release schedule of every two months, one month behind IBM, unless there is a specific fix for you or a showstopper bug (to you!) in a fixpack. Applying fixpacks is easy, despite the best efforts of the documentation to be confusing. Once you’ve done a few of them it becomes second nature and can take little to no downtime. Be sure to read the fix lists and consult the sample qpconfig xml document for new parameters and options, and once in a while even some features.

RTQM

With each fixpack comes an updated release document, and while you may be tempted to skip it, there are often hidden gems, like the time that all the notification templates were updated, or XSRF security was added. Have a look through this document, then, as I suggested above, compare your existing qpconfig.xml configuration file to the newly deposited qpconfig_sample.xml file. You may in fact find undocumented new settings (I know of one for sure, because I put it there!).

Collaboration Space Lifecycle

Quickr places that are designed for project work are temporal in nature (I love throwing ST:TNG terms into my blog), but more often than not at the end of their usefulness they sit on the server taking up space, processor, indexing time, and resources. Just like the more granular corporate document management lifecycles and retention policies, the lifecycle of Quickr places and their documents, collaborations and bastions of tacit knowledge should be planned as well. We have tools to export to PDFs, which may or may not work for you, and there are other storage options out there…

Tools and Apps and Workflows, Oh My!

Once you’ve settled on an updated Quickr instance, it’s time to add in some moderate helper tools, optimizations and easily pluggable customizations to enhance the user experience. Sitemaps, widgets to do pretty much anything, custom notification templates (branding), themes, views and HTML forms are all part of the more mature, high-ROI Quickr environments I’ve worked with for 14 years. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to deduce that you get more out of software when a) people like using it and b) it helps get their job done faster and better. So consider some of the free and paid add-ons out there. A few are in my post below (well those are more full-blown apps). One was even done for a rocket scientist. Honest.

 

Quickr Fix 36 – Oh yeah, a couple of my fixes are in…

QuickrLogoTinyI haven’t really been posting too much technical yet on the new blog but this is one of my pastimes, reading through fixes. Especially ones that include “my” fixes, like the one in red below. Hard to believe this one wasn’t noticed before now — comments not being secured like their documents are. So anyone could see “RE: Should we fire Joe?” or perhaps “RE: Is Susan pulling her weight?” in the What’s New page. If Joe or Susan were admins, there’d be hell to pay.

Another fix of mine (I enjoyed this one, as I opened a PMR, gave the solution, writing my own undocumented qpconfig.xml node) has to do with the Preview capability in Quickr. You may know that Quickr, like Notes and iNotes, uses the KeyView viewer technology to preview certain types of files. Well, in some cases you don’t even want to try to invoke that viewer, you don’t even want to show the link “Preview” next to the file attachment. After staring at the corresponding widget for  while, I dug a bit in the DOM and discovered an element called “filetypes_not_supported” with an array of six values. But they had some spaces where they shouldn’t be, and only the first one of these “.zip” was actually hiding the Preview link. The rest were showing it.

I dug a bit further and found a corresponding area of qpconfig.xml where, if this setting could be controlled, I would expect it to be. I added the setting without the spaces, and voila, fixed the core code. And now as of Fixpack 35, there is a somewhat documented node in qpconfig.xml:

<filetypes_not_supported>.zip,.z,.exe,.bin,.nsf,.ntf</filetypes_not_supported>

Now why did I care? Well, I had written a few widgets to invoke the Adobe Acrobat embedded viewer instead of KeyView. The KeyView one is quite bad on some PDFs, especially ones with images. Because of this, we didn’t want the Preview link EVER to show up next to a PDF, regardless of the form. That’s what started this little hunt in the first place.

QuickTime LogoRecently, I expanded on the PDF viewer widget and turned it into more of a utility viewer-enabler widget for files of other MIME types that have native browser viewers. A client had asked me if I could build a QuickTime version (four kinds of files) for their training needs, so their videos would stream from the site. Good news, we could do that and now due to the fix above we can avoid the Preview link and hence user confusion.

Go forth and fix, people. I have two more “By the way, I already fixed it” PMRs going in this week, so watch out for those next time…I sure hope the support folks don’t mind me doing that. 🙂

FP 8.5.1.36

GAKI8YXCW4

LO72042

An email delivered to a place that contains no paragraph break may not wrap or scroll in the rich text editor.
HMON8YJRFH

LO71856

When sending a Link from a page that has been edited, the subject line in the email may contain the word “test”.
DAMC8UMGNB

LO69635

When email groups have subgroups that contain the same user, that user may receive notifications multiple times.
DTRR92QM8H

LO73028

Comments to a Page that is private may display in the What’s New page.
MMOI6C8UHQ Request a way for Local Users of a place to not see places that are available to all logged in users to display in My Places.

(see fix MMOI6C8UHQ  in “Additional Information for special fixes” section)

RTIN92RJ74

LO73041

When using ActiveX, and editing a Page, the ActiveX attachment box appears on top of the of the notification dialog when sending a notification.
HMON92ES4H

LO72785

Popup Date fields display the previous day after upgrading from Quickr 8.2 to 8.5.1.
DWHN92GKHL

LO72884

Attachment links in custom forms disappear when using Internet Explorer 8 in compatibility mode.
TMAI92J69B

LO72896

Cannot create a new Room in FireFox when in the What’s New page.
TJOR8SVQEC

HMON936KKF

LO73241

LO68478

Pages upgraded from Quickr 8.2 to 8.5.1 display the modified date in the future.
DWHN8WTF6X

LO70889

Changes made to a subfolder in a PlaceType does not get pushed down to the child Places.
PPOR8ZTLPG

PPOR922LBL

LO72642

LO72519

When a Task’s title contains certain special characters, those special characters are removed from the notification.
TJOR8WGNVG

LO70682

Daily and weekly Newsletters may show the incorrect last modified date and time.