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Lotus Notes: NSF database usage report

Hi All,

I've been asked to choose between Lotus Notes and Exchange.

As part of the process I'd like to know which of to 50+ application databases are actually used, how often and ideally by whom.

Is this possible?

We are using Domino version 8.5

Many thanks
Lotus IBM

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Sjef Bosman

8/22/2022 - Mon
Sjef Bosman

You could start with the log.nsf database, it contains usage information. Next to that, every database contains user activity information (when enabled).

To assist you in choosing the best one for your environment:
- http://itcomparison.com/Mail/Exchange2k7vslotus8/Exchange2k7vslotus8.htm
- http://www.bleedyellow.com/blogs/dotdomino/entry/replacing_notes_here_s_how_it_really_goes_down4?lang=en

Also, don't forget to compare iNotes and OWA.

And if you're also thinking about SharePoint:
- http://www.linkedin.com/groupAnswers?viewQuestionAndAnswers=&discussionID=82756109&gid=73034&trk=eml-anet_dig-b_nd-pst_ttle-cn&ut=0Tm2ubIQ6onR01

Last but not least: do not underestimate the power of XPages...
Sjef Bosman

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How do I enable user activity on an nsf?

Also, Where's the best place to start with xpages, I'm fairly good with php, sql, vb and javascript.
Sjef Bosman

It's in the 2nd link I added, it says in figure 1 in the bottom-left corner that there is a check box "Record Activity", and that "Any user with Reader access and greater to the database can read the User Activity log from the Database Properties box Info tab (click the User Detail button)".
This is the best money I have ever spent. I cannot not tell you how many times these folks have saved my bacon. I learn so much from the contributors.
Sjef Bosman

Hmm, where to start with XPages? You need the Domino Designer, and it requires knowledge of:
- the Designer
- Notes and Domino
- databases and the object model
- web development
- JavaScript, dojo, Java and HTML
- Lotus Formula language and LotusScript

This should be a good starting point:
- http://www-10.lotus.com/ldd/ddwiki.nsf/dx/get_started_with_xpages

If you want a full assesment, with actual facts backing the charts, check out DNA by Trust-factory.com.

See also article on Ed Brill's blog

Note that your number of apps suggest you to be able to use Express licensing (less than 1500 users).  This means that for a fixed cost per user, you can use as many servers as you want, providing backup and redundancy. Although the initial cost is a little higher than Exchange, this quickly turns around as software license maintenance is a lot cheaper for Domino versus Exchange.  Also Domino uses a lot less hardware and people resources, giving even greater Return On Investment (or lower Total Cost of Ownership, whatever is your preferred measuremnt method).

Domino also offers you the advantage of having the server run on other platforms than Windows, offering you greater independence and security.

Oh, and you can use the built in free Lotus Symphony to save on your Microsoft Office licenses as well... And the spreadsheet in Symphony suports more rows than Excel too..
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Sjef Bosman

@Lars: do you still recommend Symphony? I stayed with OpenOffice first, but now there is LibreOffice...

What is great abou Symphony that it is integrated, one install.  Les stuff to worry about.

And if you are so inclined, you can buy a humungous library of help videos from Lotus, also integrated into the client. Lovely! And Symphony has a LotusScript interface!

Domino has both email and database support built into it. Keep in mind that you can't convert Domino databases to Exchange - they must be converted to Sharepoint and SQL Server. That's additional products, skill sets, licensing,  servers, and integration overhead.

How many users do you have? How big are their mailboxes?
Experts Exchange has (a) saved my job multiple times, (b) saved me hours, days, and even weeks of work, and often (c) makes me look like a superhero! This place is MAGIC!
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Also moving apps from Domino to dotNET (Exchange doesn't do applications, so you need extra hardware too) usually is so expensive that companies decide to keep Domino for the apps anyway.  If the decision is based on facts and costs instead of feelings and emotions, it is usually the case that there is NO financial benefit in migrating.

Thanks for the tips.  I've been really busy so not had the time to test the suggestions.

Several of the IT department are good in PHP/MySQL.  So "if" we went with exchange, porting the databases would be a combination of SharePoint (out of the box functionality) and several PHP sites.

But to be honest, my biggest issue is working out how much value the user place on the databases.  As most people say they hate notes, but i'm pretty sure there would be more support calls for missing features.

Exchange is currently just used for email, so several training courses and a bit of time to get used to the client should be the only headache.....

The way I see it, if the databases are heavily used - we will be keeping notes.

Although the company politics are more likely going to be my biggest issue.  Gaining buy in for either to go will be the hardest sell.  But I'm not going down the co-existence route, as it's just putting off the inevitable.
Sjef Bosman

Ok, then read this one thoroughly:
- https://inotes.ilionx.com/blog.nsf/dx/Domino85-vs-Exchange2010.pdf/$file/Domino85-vs-Exchange2010.pdf

You can build your case using the comparisons that are available. Most Outlook "success stories" I've seen discuss the happiness of the users. Of course, the Notes UI may be crap, but is it worth $200 - $400 per user to migrate, just because "they" hate Notes? As if Outlook were that good, do some enquiries on the web, and I bet you'll find more Outlook errors than Notes/Domino mail errors (just mail of course, since that's all Outlook can handle).

If all they want is Outlook, activate IMAP on the Domino server and configure Outlook with IMAP. If they want just a different mail client, set up the Domino server for iNotes, so you can use any browser to read and send mails.

PS Isn't it funny that Notes was the first with its workspace (tabbed pages), there was nothing but scorn. And now, many an application embraced the tabs...
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