HCL Notes Client V12 webinar

Panagenda and HCL hosted a webinar on Thursday 22nd April 2021 which we attended. Barry Rosen (HCL), Kim Greene (Kim Greene Consulting), and Christoph Adler and Daniel Klas (panagenda) were hosting the event which was focused on the Notes Client.

The long beta period, with three consecutive betas helped HCL polish V12. The biggest innovation is going to be the possibility of having the Notes Client viewable in a browser. Some attendees mentioned poor performance, though, so I hope that HCL can sort it out before the release. For companies trying to reduce the dependency on the fat, heavy Notes Client, this will be a welcome innovation, although I expect that the more complex Notes Client applications will still need to be run locally.

The points that caught my attention were:

Improved HTML rendering

This has been a pain point for years now. Admittedly, this is no easy task, since there is no standard, be it RFC or otherwise, of how e-mails with HTML should render in different clients, so correctly rendering incoming e-mails is a time-intensive, frustrating task, since each e-mail client follows their own standard. HTML rendering in the Notes Client was stuck in the nineties, though, so this is going to be less of an embarrassment.

Keyboard navigation in the Workspace

This is particularly welcome for the more nerdy users, for whom the loss of keyboard navigation would be annoying

64bit Basic Client

The Windows version of the basic client is transitioning to 64bit (The mac version is already 64 bit). HCL is still putting it in beta, to give time for third-party developers to update their dlls. It’s a most welcome improvement, though. I’m very relieved that the basic client is getting more care and attention – presumably because it’s the basic client that is the core of the ‘client on iPad and Webbrowser’ , and that we are slowly reverting the abomination that is the Standard Client (The decision to port the client as a RCP Eclipse application was one of IBM’s major blunders in my opinion)

The second part of the webinar was a presentation of panagendas Marvel Client upgrade functionality. As usual, Christoph Adler rattled off the presentation at his usual 400wpm, and left me as usual impressed with the speed of the update, and with the breadth of different configurations that the upgrader can cope with.

Adé Nathan

Nathan T. Freeman passed away on 12th April 2021.

He was one of the gurus of the Notes/Domino developer community, very much at the cutting edge of technology and always pushing the boundaries of what was possible with our beloved Notes stack. An early adopter of XPages, he was one of the first to show that one could significantly improve the quality of the XPages applications by concentrating on pure Java Development (which was unfortunately hidden under the covers of XPages), and also one of the first ones to eschew it.

He was one of the founders of OpenNTF, and in a lucky twist of fate his initial were NTF, the file extension for Notes templates, which I always found particularly nifty.

He had an abrasive online personality completely belied by his charm and affability when met in person. I had the pleasure of emptying a bottle of whisky with him on a long night in Eindhoven at the Engage meetup. Eloquent and quick-witted, he was a pleasure to talk to, and an excellent intellectual sparring partner.

Due to unfortunate circumstances his family is in dire straights, I include a GoFundMe link if you would like to contribute.

We will miss you Nathan.

Andrew and the SNoUG Team

V3 of Notes and Domino V12 Beta is out – now!

Source: https://ncug.org/

V3 of Notes and Domino V12 Beta is out, and anybody who is a Notes/Domino customer can download it and try it out, just like with Beta 1 and Beta 2.

Beta 3 Highlights

  • Notes Client
    • New improved Workspace
    • Mac M1 Compatibility
    • 64 Bit Basic Client
    • Improved HTML rendering in Email
  • Domino
    • Active Directory Password syncing
    • Adding Verse to Domino installer
    • Entitlement Tracking & Reporting for CCB/CCX
    • Back up Solution
  • Domino Designer
    • Addressed beta feedback


The latest release includes:

  • Domino on Docker
  • Domino for Windows, Linux, AIX, IBMi
  • Traveler for Windows, Linux, AIX, IBMi
  • Notes Standard for Windows
  • Notes Standard for Mac
  • Designer and Admin Client
  • Connections Plugin for Notes 12
  • Notes Basic 64 bit


You can download it from Flexnet:


Here are the languages that are supported, thus far:

  • Arabic
  • BrazilianPortuguese
  • Czech
  • Dutch
  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Japanese
  • Korean
  • Polish
  • Russian
  • Swedish
  • Spanish
  • Simplified Chinese
  • Traditional Chinese


In the previous Beta version, HCL changed the workspace for the Notes client. The reactions from the HCL community were mixed. Here are the changes since then:

  • Cleaned up the fonts on chicklets (modern)
  • Reduced excessive spacing
  • Changed the font color of workspace database icon-policy (WorkspaceTextColor) – End user can change
  • Added mechanisms to partially/ completely collapse navigator
  • Added indications to identify multiple replicas
  • Keyboard Navigation

Here’s a picture of my workspace, so that you can see some of the new stuff:

HCL Notes Workspace V12 Beta 3

Here’s what will be coming after general release of V12:

  • Modern hover on workspace icons (complete database name/server name/more info about application)
  • Rearranging the pages (Workspace tabs)
  • Grouping
  • Search bar for workspace

Apple M1 Support

M1 is Apple’s latest hardware offering, which was released in January.

HCL have tested and confirmed that v12 Notes Standard client Beta 3 does work on the following hardware:

  • M1 Mac Mini: 8-core CPU, 16GB unified memory
  • New Apple MacBook Pro with Apple M1 Chip (13-inch, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD)

They would like customers to try it and give them feedback

Forum and feedback

Register for new Account: https://registration.hclpartnerconnect.com/betasignup.nsf

Beta Forum: https://registration.hclpartnerconnect.com/d12betaforum.nsf

Active Directory password sync

You will no longer have to remember one password for your PC account and one for your Notes account. You will now be able to set up syncronisation so that whenever a user’s password is changed in Active Directory, it will automatically also be changed for Notes.

AD password change events are sync-ed to Domino in less than 5 seconds. This change can be either admin or user-initiated.

More information.

Backup = COOL!

You will from now on be able to run backup of your Notes/Domino environment in a much better way than before.

A new backup solution is embedded in Domino. It will come preinstalled but you will have to activate yourself on every Domino server where you want it to run. You control the backup from a Notes application:

Domino backup
Multi restore nsf files

You can run this with a backup provider of your choice. There’s no longer any need to run Tivoli next to your regular backup environment.

Domino Database

  • Backup Configuration
    • Destination: (local/cloud storage, backup vendor)
    • What to back up? Directories/file names to include / exclude
    • Schedule
  • Restore jobs to be processed
    • Side-by-side / Replace
    • Who will have access to restore
  • Logs
    • Backup/restore logs
    • Transaction log backup history

Domino Server Tasks

  • Backup
    • Invoke Domino Backup C-API to put NSF/NTF file in backup mode
    • Notify configured backup subsystem to start backup
    • Wait for backup to finish and reactivate Domino databases
  • Restore
    • Process data that is made available by backup environment and make available to Domino. (Disable agents, change filename, change ACL, change ReplicaID, etc.)
    • Replay transaction logs (if requested)

Here’s the technical bit:

Domino Backup setup

License tracking

You will now also be able to keep track of how many licenses you have, and what level of access each user have on the server.

A user needs a license (entitlement) when:

  • They have the ability toaccess the server§
    • Server Access Security Settings
    • Ability to authenticate with the server
  • They have ACL access to at least onedatabase on the server
    • Explicitly named in an ACL
    • Member of a group named in an ACL
    • Match a *wild card in an ACL
    • Database has a –Default-access level of READER or higher

Domino will now come with a Notes application called Entitlement Tracking:

Entitlement Tracker for HCL Domino
User entitlement form on Domino

You can also generate a report and email it to HCL or the powers that be:

HCL Domino entitlement tracking report

New HCL Connections plugin

The HCL Connections plugin for Notes have famously been completely broken since V10. Windows close at whim, you risk your workspace being ruined and you haven’t been able to upload files into Connections from Notes.

In the same directory where you find the files for downloading Notes V12 Beta 3 and Domino V12 Beta 3, you will also find a file called ConnectionsAddonInstallerforNotes12_Beta.zip. Do yourself a favour and donwload it. You can once again integrate Notes with Connections.

Domino Release 12 Beta 2 is out – now

HCL Notes, Domino, Traveler V12 Beta 2 is available

The speed with which new features are being added here is stunning fast.
We have been really impressed with the first beta and we are looking forward to getting stuck into all
the new stuff here.

  • What’s new in Domino 12? LINK
  • What’s new in Notes 12? LINK
  • What’s new in Domino Designer 12? LINK
  • What’s new in Traveler 12? LINK

Here’s a flavour of the new look!

improved workspace interface

Get it now on flexnet it’s available for all current customers.

Explore the HCL Domino v12 Beta Program

HCL Domino V12 Beta 1 is here!

HCL started the public beta of HCL Notes/Domino V12 and is offering the following packages
in the first phase:

HCL Domino ( Docker, Linux, Windows and AIX ) – english
HCL Traveler ( Linux, Windows and AIX ) – multilingual
HCL Notes Standard Edition ( Windows and MAC ) – english
HCL Designer and Admin Client – english

Feel free and participate in the V12 Beta Program where you also can post questions and other stuff on the
HCL Domino V12 Beta forum.

Take a look at the highlights of Phase 1:
HCL Domino V12 – What´s new
HCL Notes V12 – What´s new
HCL Designer and Admin V12 – What´s new
HCL Traveler V12 – What´s new

In upcoming phases there will also be support for IBM i and of course multilingual support.

See the full story in the HCL Domino V12 Beta 1 on the official blog of HCL.

Domino Volt – so schaut’s aus

Wieso, weshalb, warum singen die Kinder mit vorm Fernseher. Oder sangen… keine Ahnung ob diese Sendung immer noch existiert… Nicht alles vom letzten Jahrhundert hat es geschaft immer noch aktuell, relevant zu sein, es sei denn noch aktueller. Aber Notes gelang es dank HCL definitiv.

Ich konnte Volt in Arnhaim bei der Engage 2020 Anfang März entdecken. Faszinierend für mich waren ein Paar Fakten :

  • der Produktleiter, Marty Lechleider war anwesend und half jedem von uns der Fragen hatte, diskutierte auch ohne Filter alle Themen die einer von uns ansprach. So eine Qualitativ hohe Interkation is neu und, zumindest für mich, viel mehr Wert als jedes ‘verkaufs-marketing-bla-bla’ Seminar wie wir die bei IBM und anderen Herstellern gewohnt waren..
  • Volt war automatisch in der Sprache die im User PC angegeben war vorhanden.
  • die Benutzung war ‘fliessend’. Einfach und instinktiv konnten allerlei Sachen gemacht und Funktionen gefunden werden
  • Volt fühlt sich nicht wie ein Prototyp an, sondern wie ein Produkt das bereit ist. Von den 3-4 Stunden Arbeit damit sieht es so abgerundet aus : keine eckigen Kanten, flottes Verhalten, gut durchdacht, dazu noch dokumentiert.

Eines stand aus : eine Aehnlichkeit zu xPages. Benutzt man Volt, da kommen doch oft Stellen wo ein xPages Entwickler sich schon sagt : oh das kenne ich ja.

Das andere sehr Interessante ist der Import der Daten von einer Excel Datei. Diejenigen die an der CWP Factory Tour in Milan dabei waren und Michael Alexander’s Vortrag sahen, konnten in Volt das sehen was Michael ein Jahr zuvor demonstrierte. Damals war es noch kein Prototyp. Eher eine Idee der Michael nachging. Das so was binnen 12 Monaten sein Weg in ein fertiges Produkt findet ist beeindruckend. Das erhöht auch den Wert der HCL Beifträge und Seminare : es ist nicht blos Marketing blabla.

Jetzt stellt sich die Frage wofür Volt nun dienen kann ? Wie kann es wohl zum Einsatz kommen ?

HCL zielt auf den Citizen Developper. Ich muss zugeben : den kenne ich nicht. Das hat wahrscheinlich damit zu tun dass meine 30 Jahre Arbeit mit Notes meistens bei SMBs statt fanden und nur von Zeit zu Zeit bei Grossfirmen. Und der Citizen Developper von dem HCL spricht ist eine Person die bei grösseren Firmen arbeitet. Aber, für Firmen wie unsere, TRACE Software Industries SA, die Notes Entwicklung und Consulting machen, ist Volt ein tolles Produkt. Ich kann mir auch ganz gut vorstellen wie IT Departments von Grossfirmen damit vieles anfangen werden können.

Selbst wenn das nicht offiziell so vorgestellt wird, denke ich an Domino Volt als Alternative zu xPages, zumindestens für 90% der Funktionen die bis jetzt in xPages gemacht wurden. Und, so denke ich, es ist einfacher als xPages, sieht stabiler aus und erlaubt viel schneller bei einfachen Applikationen zu einem brauchbaren und gut aussehendem Resultat zu führen. Die Interfaces zu anderen Systemen (z.B. die Demonstration mit SalesForce) deuten darauf hin dass Volt strategisch durchdacht ist und für lange Zeit als Kompagnon- resp. BegleitProdukt zu Notes/Domino da sein wird.

Wir, TRACE Software Industries SA, arbeiten an einer Serie von Standard Modulen : Online registration, customer support, newsletter creation worflow, und andere. Der Fakt dass dies alles in einer Notes Datenbank passiert, und daher mit standard Notes Mitteln verarbeitet werden kann ist einfach genial. Wir können alles in unsere CRM und ERP platform ohne weiteres einfügen.

Christophe-Franz Jost ist Leiter der TRACE Software Industries SA (www.trace.ch), basiert und Lausanne und seit mehr als 37 Jahren international aktiv. Er entwickelt seit Version 2 mit Lotus Notes.