Monday, October 29, 2007

Adding ScanMail to a new Domino partition

As a follow up to my earlier post on Domino upgrade on System i - Copying Trend ScanMail I would like to show how to apply ScanMail to a new Domino partition. This assumes you have a system with at least one existing Domino partition setup and ScanMail for Domino 3.0 installed on that partition.

As stated in the earlier post if you just setup a new Domino partition and then try to run the ScanMail setup to apply it to the new partition, it will give an error if a SMD patch or service pack has been installed. The way around this is to do the following:

  1. Setup the new Domino partition as you would any new partition.
  2. You will then need to get the SMD databases and templates from an existing Domino server in the domain. This can be done one of two ways; do a file system copy of the SMD databases from an existing Domino partition to the new Domino partition (with both Domino partitions shutdown to be safe), or replicate the databases from an existing Domino partition keeping in mind replication is disabled by default on some of the databases.
  3. Add the following entries to the NOTES.INI file on the new partition:
  4. Add the following tasks to the SERVERTASKS line of the NOTES.INI:
    SMDemf,SMDreal,SMDsch,SMDmon (You will also need SMDdbs if you use replication scanning)
When you start the new Domino partition it will load the SMD tasks. You will then need to open the ScanMail Configuration Database in Notes and configure the settings for the new server as usual.

Disclaimer: I'm not responsible for any damage, malfunction, or lost data performing the above procedure may cause.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Comcast filtering Lotus Notes (Update 2)

We started getting reports from some of our users last week that large e-mail transfers via Lotus Notes were once again working on the Comcast network. I did some testing this weekend and every upload was successful.

So it would seem the filtering, at least for Notes in the Chicago area, has been lifted by Comcast. There is no telling if this is permanent since Comcast denies ever doing this in the first place but I will be watching it.

Original post
Updated post

Update 10/24/07:
Here are some links related to the issue being resolved
Associated Press article
Ed Brill bolg posting

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Domino upgrade on System i - Copying Trend ScanMail

We run Domino on System i (iSeries/AS400) and use Trend ScanMail for virus scanning. When you install a new Domino point release the new Domino library doesn't contain the files needed by ScanMail. When you upgrade a Domino partition to this new release and it tries to load SMD it will fail because it can't find the program files.

The Trend solution for this is to run the ScanMail install and apply it to the new Domino code. However, if you have a service pack or patch applied to ScanMail the install program will error out saying there is a newer version installed than the one you are trying to install. The install program for the service pack is just an update script so you are forced to run the original install program. Trend's answer to this is to completely uninstall ScanMail and re-install from scratch. This is tedious on a system that has multiple Domino partitions running.

Below are the manual steps to add ScanMail to a new Domino library. These steps use the default Domino paths and uses 7.0.2 as the existing Domino code and 7.0.3 as the new Domino code where ScanMail is being copied to.

After installing the latest Domino code do the following (This can be done while the Domino partitions are up):

  1. From a 5250 session use the WRKLNK command and navigate to the /QIBM/ProdData/LOTUS/DOMINO702 folder.
  2. On the bottom command line enter CHGCURDIR ‘/QIBM/ProdData/LOTUS/DOMINO703’
  3. Locate the file SMD.INI and type a 3 next to it and press F4. In the Owner field enter *KEEP and press ENTER.
  4. Locate each of the following files, type a 3 next to each one individually, press F4. In the Symbolic link field enter *YES and in the Owner field enter *KEEP and press ENTER.

Now when you upgrade a Domino partition to the latest version it will be able to find the ScanMail programs. This process works for ScanMail for Domino 3.0 so future versions may change this process.

There may be a more automated way of doing this but my i5/OS knowledge is limited so this is what works for me.

Disclaimer: I'm not responsible for any damage, malfunction, or lost data performing the above procedure may cause.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Self-healing Domino

I was on the train yesterday going home when my Blackberry (BB) vibrates followed by the dreaded audible alarm. I have my BB setup to vibrate for most messages but whenever it receives an alert from our GSX Monitor it makes noise. I look at the alert and one of our Domino servers isn't responding. It used to be this would initiate frantic phone calls to find someone near a computer that would know how to look into the problem with the server and get it back online. Not in today's world.

This particular Domino server is running on one of our iSeries (System i) and I have Rove Mobile's (formerly Idokorro) Mobile SSH on my BB. I fired up a 5250 green screen from my BB and get direct access to the Domino server console. This server also has Auto Recovery enabled so I could see from the console and i5OS jobs that the server had initiated an auto restart and was on it's way back up. Within 5 minutes of receiving the server down notification e-mail I received the server up e-mail. All while sitting on a train with just a BB. I didn't even need the BB but it provided peace of mind that I could see the server taking care of itself.

Now the reason the server faulted was due to SPR# MIAS6VALFX which is fixed in 7.0.2 FP2 and 7.0.3. This server is currently running 7.0.2. I'm hoping this was just an isolated incident but as my earlier post stated, I have started the upgrade process to 7.0.3.

This isn't the first time we have had a Domino server fault and I'm sure it won't be the last. It's nice to have a system that will attempt to take care of itself in an emergency. Thanks IBM/Lotus from all the Domino admins and the users that never know what happened behind the scenes.

Domino 7.0.3 Available

Rob Ingram posted the announcement today. I have already downloaded the i5OS, Windows, and Linux server versions and our test Windows server is already upgraded. I had to start testing it since we may need to roll it into production to resolve a server issue that just appeared yesterday. I'm hoping it was just a one time occurrence. More on that later.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Joined the i revolution

After dealing with the clunky interfaces on other MP3 players I finally broke down and bought an iPod. I gave the Windows Media and less expensive MP3 player combo a try for a while. It just never measured up to the seamless integration you get with iPod and iTunes.

When the new 3rd generation iPod Nano came out I knew it was time to switch. The video wasn't that big of a deal for me although it has a very sharp screen. Even though it is only 2 inches it's easy to view a TV show. I like the interface, form factor, and seamless integration with iTunes. I downloaded 2 episodes of The Office from iTunes just to check out the video and see if I would find it useful. I also downloaded the new David Crowder Band album Remedy while I was in the iTunes store.

I have the 8 GB model and with 3 hour long TV shows, a couple of the latest IdoNotes and Taking Notes podcasts, and 125 songs I still have 5GB free. I don't need my entire music library with me so I don't mind just having a selection available on the iPod. I especially don't need my wife's albums on there so I use the manual sync option in iTunes.

I bought my wife the 1st gen Nano a year ago and after getting used to the iTunes interface decided this combo just works.

A co-worker pointed me to the Best Skins Ever site for a protective skin. I'll be getting this for mine and my wife's device and will post the results.