Running Lotus Notes Version 7 with Lotus Domino Version 8 and above


I am a bit out of touch with Lotus Notes & Domino as I have not worked on it for 3 years or so and I believe this is a simple question, but I can't find the answer anywhere.  If you need to upgrade the Domino server for compatibility with another application do you have to  upgrade the Lotus Notes clients, or can they stay happily running an earlier version than the server?

Thanks in advance.

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John-Charles-HerzbergConnect With a Mentor Commented:
You do not need to upgrade the clients.  We are running a mix of 6.5, 7.x and 8.5.x with 8.5 servers.
The server version can be raised independent of the client version as long as databases are not upgraded to use elements only available to clients of the later version.

In general if you upgrade the server but do not change the database it will work ok.
Mail fiels shoudl use the previuos R7 template not be upgraded to R8 version.

Application database upgrade compatibility is totally reliant on that applications design, but again if the database is not explicitly upgraded to a later version it will be ok.

If you have 8.5.x specific applications requirments then get users to use browser access for those specific applications

Just make sure you disable Designer task in server's notes.ini (simply remove it from the list) to avoid refreshing the design of your existing databases with new version's templates.
Then, as doninja said, you could potentially have problems with e.g. mail databases, because of the fact that clients wont support some features of the template's design.

Although I think that there is not that much differences between templates of v7 and v8, better be safe than sorry...
Have found the display and views goes wrong when using R7 client on R8.5 template but the mail files do have to be explicitly upgraded to the R8 template, it isn't automatic luckily :)

Good point on design task during intial upgrade of server, but that could be needed for other databases so better to go through key exisiting databases that use standard templates such as discussion or document libraries and change the template name to something that does not exist to ensure it does not pick up any new elements.

You can then look if the template associated with is an explicit R7 version or got upgraded.

I think IBM have been nice and kept all R8+ specific templates seperate and left R7 versions on the server.
Don't forget there are two levels of database structure:  The design which has to remain the same for older clients, and the ODS, which is the On Disk Structure or file format.  The ODS needs to be upgraded for the Domino server to perform at its best.  This has no consequence for the client, since it still gets the same data from the server, the ODS only concerns the storage format, not the design of the data.

If you install a new server and not upgrade, there are no old templates.  Those are only there if you upgrade an older server.

Read the redbook: IBM Lotus Notes and Domino 8 Deployment Guide
And don't forget the wiki:
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