IBM announces E-Mail Hosting service

Bob Picciano (General Manager Lotus Software) announced on Interop. fare last week that IBM is going to start an E-Mail and Calendaring service based on Lotus Domino. It is available for companies from 1,000 to 10,000 employees and can be licenced at a price from 8 to 18 dollars per person.

This is most likely the answer to Microsoft’s Exchange Online which is available for companies with more than 5,000 employees.


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Lotus Foundations – First steps

Installing Lotus Foundations start is quite a simple thing following this guide. You end up with a VM holding a basic Foundations installation. 

Lotus Foundations Server

Lotus Foundations Server

Webmail and calendaring (Domino Web Access) is already included and ready to use. You can choose between Full and Light version of DWA.

The web interface provides and easy way to manage and monitor your Foundations installation. There are functions to add users, to install AddOns, to configure mailing, ports and other stuff. Adding a new user automatically creates a new mailfile for this user so that she/he can immediately start over with writing mails and creating calendar entries.

There are a couple of AddOns you can install to enhance the capabilities of the server. Lotus Domino, Lotus Notes, Lotus Symphony and Engate Mail Sentinel (Anti-Spam). All AddOns will be installed to the Foundations server and managed from there. The Domino Server runs on the Foundations server. Lotus Notes and Lotus Symphony however are installation packaged which can be downloaded to workstations and installed there. Both Lotes and Lotus Domino are currently version 8.0.1!

Altogether the installation and configuration of the server is very easy, AddOns install themselves with no additional settings to be made and it simply works! Now all sales people have to convince S and M customers to buy this server. I have no clue how to licence the server and the AddOns and how much a licence costs, but given the simplicity of installing and configuring the server and yet the power of tools it provides it should sell well.


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Java EE Server survey – My solution

I posted an article asking about JEE servers and which best to use in different scenarios. Well, I had to find a solution for my company and want to share it with you in case you have a similar task.

We have developed a web application that collects appointment data from Lotus Notes Mailfiles, writes this data into a relational database and provides an ajax frontend to view appointments, create new ones, update existing appointments and many more features. Changes will be synchronized with Lotus Notes mailfiles.

Anyway, it is a web application running on an application server. Since we have not used any EJBs, we don’t necessary need a full application server. Now there are a couple of installation scenarios for which to choose the appropriate server.

  1. New installation for a customer that has no application server running yet
  2. New installation for a customer already having an application server
  3. Internal productive installation
  4. Internal demo installation hosted on the web
  5. Internal demo installation in a VM for sales personnel to take to presentations

Numer 2 implies that we have to at least support the major application servers (IBM Websphere, BEA Weblogic, JBoss, Glassfish, Tomcat).

This is what I would do today in all other cases:

  1. New customer installation: Glassfish – I reckon Glassfish is at least as good as JBoss but has a web frontend for administration purposes. So I favour Glassfish over JBoss.
  2. We have to cope with what the customer already has
  3. Internal productive installation: Glassfish – When suggesting Glassfish to customers theres no way not to use it internally as well.
  4. Internal web demo: And again Glassfish.
  5. VM demo: Apache Tomcat – A virtual machine has not as much power as a server and there is other software running on it as well like Lotus Domino, Lotus Notes, a relational database, … Tomcat is lean and fast and sufficient for the given case.

All right. I’d appreciate any other suggestions.

Lotusphere 2009

Registration gates are open for next year’s Lotusphere! My first Lotusphere ever was, let me think, this year and all I can say is: AMAZING. There is nothing comparable in the world if you are interested in the Lotus Brand. I will definately go next year to inhale the athmosphere, meet many great people, learn a lot of new things and hopefully sell some stuff.

So, if that was not convincing, here is what other people say about Lotusphere.

If you need good arguments to get a couple of bucks from your boss check this out.

Anyway, I am already excited and can’t wait to go. Hope to meet you there.

Google launches WebBrowser called „Chrome“

Google Chrome as announced yesterday is a new Google project. A WebBrowser that follows a new approach. Instead of using one process for the entire browser Chrome uses a process for each and every browser tab. So in case a tab hangs because a script fails to execute properly only that tab hangs and every other tab is still working fine. Closing the tab means killing a process with all the memory allocated for the process.

Apart from that new approach Google claims to develop a faster browser in terms of startup times, page loading and so on.

A beta should be available today. A comic that shows the Chrome technology is available here.