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Can R5 webmail coexist with R4.6 desktop client?

Posted on 2004-04-05
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Last Modified: 2013-12-18
We're running an R5 server.  Most users have the 4.6 client, but some are on 5.0.11. We recently introduced webmail, and find that it works much better for the R5 desktop users.  My question: Is there a way to update only the webmail portion of the database design for the 4.6 users to R5? And if so, could you offer some guidance on the approach? (Or, alternatively, can one replace the design with the R5 template without breaking the functioning of the 4.6 client?)  (I'm a departmental tech manager, not the mail administrator.  Mail admin sez, "Can't be done," but I have my doubts.)
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Question by:auerweck
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Expert Comment

by:Sjef Bosman
ID: 10756652
Trying to sift the web-stuff out of a mail template is no easy job. Most things will be downwards compatible, although there will be some that refuse to work. So by all means, give it a try! Make sure that you work on a copy of the mail database (not a replica). Then replace the design with the R5 design you want to have and open the new deb with an R4 client. You can even do this locally.
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by:Bozzie4
ID: 10756734
If you have recent 4.6 clients (I mean 4.6.7), you should be able to use the R5 template.
But, like sjef says, try it and find out yourself :-)

Tom
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Stan Reeser earned 750 total points
ID: 10760363
Actually its 4.6.7a that has the cabaility for the larger unk tables.
This is the last 4.6x version there is.

As for updateing the tempate w/o updating the client... unfortunately Tom is incorrect .. the main store of the script library takes advantage of the R5 design enhancements and won't run in 4x.  

As for taking the web design from 5... well you should trust your admins thats why you have them.

While it is theoretically feasible, why not just update the clients... the interface even in notes is better in 5x and the cost to do what you are talking about is in the thousands of dollars to have it be done correctly and properly tested. You will essentialy have to rebuild the entire web part of R5 as a side by side application within the 4.6 nsf, so that if the client is notes use the 46 part and if web the 5x part.  This is more than just replacing the forms all the code and scripts in the library are different on each side and the 5x using things like pages and other R5only design elements. Any commonality that the notes side in 5x has with the web side would need to be identified and separated out.  I do custom programming for a living and I don't think I would even submit a bid on a project like that.

Good luck.
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Expert Comment

by:Jamie_Steele
ID: 10764622
If you are intending to use the R5 web mail client, then surely it does not matter whether the R4.x clients can use it? Just get them to use their web browser instead of the Notes client when using email. Updating the mail database to the R5 template is easy... if that is the way you want to go.

There is a further way of doing this, if you are running separate R4.x and R5 servers. You can allow each user to have a replica of their mail databases on each server, but set it to not allow replication of design changes. (i.e. Replicate only data, which means only the mail messages would replicate.) Then they would have the choice of using the R5 web mail, or the R4.x client.

I agree with sreeser... that trying to merge an R4.x and R5 template is futile.
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by:Stan Reeser
ID: 10766659
I think this answers if they just want the web interface:
 (Or, alternatively, can one replace the design with the R5 template without breaking the functioning of the 4.6 client?)  

But the separate servers is a workable solution.
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by:auerweck
ID: 11458881
Absurdly long delay in accepting, I know, but I was guided by sreeser's comments.  Other answers also helpful.

Yes, I would like to trust my admins, but the 2 folks who went to Lotus training both left the company some time ago, so we're left with a caretaker who only knows about the basic functions.  

Just by way of more background, we have several hundred users on R4.6, and recently added Web access for those who are at home or on the road. The 4.6 Web client is really, really bad -- you can't delete a message without getting a "Page not found" error -- but the prospect of updating hundreds of desktop clients, and converting their databases, is really daunting.  Oh, well.

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by:Stan Reeser
ID: 11459274
Glad to help

Yes the prospect is daunting but I will tell you that even the Plain Web interface for R6 is a VAST improvement over 4x web access and Domino Web Mail (formerly inotes) is another vast improvement over that if you have the server power (multiply your average concurrent notes client users by 3 to get their equivalent concurrent server draw with inotes).  With that users can use a web interface that has *many* of the features previously only available to the notes client (selecting multiple documents, and moving to folders just to name a few).  If you take the servers to R6 you may be able to do away with most of the clients completely.  Also  the anti-spam functionality while not best of breed is light years away from prior versions.

I have been through 2 separate system-wide upgrades for my clients in the past six months, and the process for mail was much easier than the process for the other apps.   And it really can be undertaken in manageable chunks.  You can contact me at my username above  at thedatacenter dot com if you need some hands on assistance.

Stan
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