Friday 25 November 2011

I  Lotus on my iPhone :-)

Just downloaded three new apps for my shiny new iPhone

I also noticed that the Connections app now supports WordPerfect documents via their app - which is nice - I'm sure that someone on Twitter mentioned a need for WP on the iPad or iPhone recently ?

Thursday 24 November 2011

Understanding IBM Tivoli Directory Integrator for IBM Lotus Connections 3.0: A getting started guide

One of my IBM colleagues drew my attention to this: -

The purpose of this white paper is to give users a good understanding of how IBM Lotus® Connections uses IBM Tivoli® Directory Integrator, so they can understand how to look at the Lotus Connections AssemblyLines and understand what they do.

In this white paper

• Introduction
• Installation
• Out-of-the-box Profiles population
• Setting up the development environment
• Testing your configuration
• Logging/tracing
• Connections 2.5 "Best Practice" approach
• Connections 3.0 "Best Practice" approach
• Custom delete logic
• New Connectors
• Sample files
• Conclusion
• Appendix: Comprehensive overview of all notifications in Lotus Connections 3.0
• Resources
• About the authors

Definitely worth a read ….

Monday 21 November 2011

Understanding HTTP plug-in failover in a clustered environment

This is another of my "file it away because I know it'll be useful in about 5 minutes time" links: -


After setting up the HTTP plug-in for load balancing in a clustered IBM® WebSphere® environment, the HTTP plug-in is not performing failover in a timely manner or at all when a cluster member becomes unavailable.


In most cases, the preceding behavior is observed because of a misunderstanding of how HTTP plug-in failover works or might be due to an improper configuration. Also, the type of Web server (multi-threaded versus single threaded) being used can affect this behaviour.

Lotus Symphony Viewer up in the Android Market

Now I don't have any Android devices, being an acolyte of the Temple of Apple, with two iOS devices, and a 3rd on the way.

However, this looks to be rather shiny.

With the IBM® Lotus® Symphony Viewer you can view Open Document Format (ODF) text documents, presentations, and spreadsheets downloaded to your phone or tablet without the need for any network connection. Launch the viewer directly from the application icon and choose an ODF file to view, or select Symphony when you want to view an ODF document from another application such as IBM Lotus Notes® Traveler.
Connect a projector dongle to your phone or tablet to use the viewer as your presentation source

Got an Android phone or tablet ? Use Open Document Format ? Then get some of this ….

Now ask me what I use to view ODF documents on the iPad ?

Wednesday 16 November 2011

Customizing IBM Lotus Connections 3.0 email digests and notifications

For my current project, I was looking at a mechanism to customise the look, feel and content of IBM Connections email notifications.

Summary:  One of the primary new features of IBM Lotus Connections 3.0 is the email digest capability, which provides personalized daily and weekly newsletters that are generated based on the activities and updates in the user's social network. This white paper describes how to customize the daily and weekly digests emails, ranging from changing the look and feel of emails to more complex customizations such as adding your company-specific content to the email digests. In addition, this paper also covers customizing individual notification emails sent by the Lotus Connections services.

written by Vincent Burckhardt and Lorenzo Notarfonzo looks to be just the ticket.

Definitely worth a peek ….

WebSEAL and WebSphere Portal - An Integration Pattern

Saw this on Stephen Swann's blog

Thanks to Niall, I've been encouraged to provide my thoughts on how Single Sign On from WebSEAL to WebSphere Portal can be achieved.

In reality, the integration pattern is one of the simpler patterns to adopt. I say simple, but as Niall alluded to when asking me to provide my thoughts on the issue he quite rightly stated that there are at least two approaches to the problem - the LTPA approach and the TAI approach.

Definitely worth a read, as he's a pretty sharp cookie ( if that's even possible ).

IBM Web Experience Factory - My First Time Out

I was updating a WebSphere Portal Express v7 VMware image  for a colleague, using an existing VM built using Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.5.

Having updated Portal to use the latest CF009 codebase, I also wanted to include the most recent version of WebSphere Portlet Factory Designer, now known as IBM Web Experience Factory.

Having sought and downloaded the product: -

IBM Web Experience Factory V7.0.1 Multiplatform Multilingual (CI1XDML)

as and the corresponding fix pack ( ), I also needed a copy of Eclipse into which to install WEF.

For some strange reason, IBM includes Eclipse with WEF on Windows, but not on Unix :-(

Looking at the System Requirements document, I noticed that Eclipse 3.6.1 is required.

This led me to the website, from where I downloaded Eclipse JEE Helios.

This gave me a file - eclipse-jee-helios-linux-gtk.tar.gz - which I installed by simply expanding it ( via tar xvzf ) into its own directory - /opt/IBM/WebSphere/PortletFactory/eclipse.

Having done this, I was able to install and fix pack WEF, and create portlets to my heart's content.

Monday 14 November 2011

Lotus Traveler workshop. Dublin 6th December

This from Paul Mooney 

We have never ran the Traveler workshop in Dublin, so with the end of the year rapidly closing in, it's about time to rectify that.

The Lotus Traveler deep dive workshop will be held in the Conrad Hotel in Dublin on the 6th December.  Details here.  Register here.

Wednesday 9 November 2011

New backup & restore tool for IBM Connections Communities

Saw this posted by Suzanne Livingston on earlier, and thought "Wow, that's shiny, oh so shiny"

There is a new asset in the Greenhouse Catalog for IBM Connections users. 

IBM Connections community backup and restore is an easy way to back up and restore Connections communities. 

• Back up a Connections community to a zip file. Backs up Members, Forums, Feeds, Bookmarks, Activities, Blog, Wiki, and Files in a community, interactively or via script.
• Restore a Connections community from the backup zip file. Restores Members, Forums, Feeds, Bookmarks, Activities, and Blog to a community.
• NOTE: Files and Wiki pages cannot be automatically restored.

Now we need some of that :-)

Nice one, folks

Tuesday 8 November 2011

IBM Connections – Incorrect Global Moderation Alerts

This from Jon Halman's blog, one which I regularly follow for the gems, nay pearls, of wisdom

I've been working with a customer recently on Moderation within IBM Connections 3.0.1 and we discovered an issue where alerts are being sent to Global Moderators when they shouldn't.

In this scenario pre-moderation (content approval) is disabled but post-moderation (content flagging) is enabled and Blog owners (both Community and standalone) are allowed to moderate comments on their blogs.

If a Blog owner enables moderation on comments then they will receive a notification asking them to approve (or not) comments when they are submitted. The problem is that the Global Moderators also receive this notification which they shouldn't (as pre-moderation is disabled).

Want to know more ?

Then check out the blog post ...

Integrating Lotus Connections V3 with WebSphere Portal Search V7

Saw this in two places this morning ….

(i) My colleague, Cali, bookmarked it on our internal IBM Connections 3.0.1 deployment, which meant that the IBM Lotus Connections alerts plugin for Lotus Notes  told me about it almost immediately ….
(ii) My other colleague, Stu, Tweeted about it, within a few seconds

Ah, serendipity, how sweeeeeet you are ….

Here's the TOC

• 1 Prerequisites
• 2 Preparation
• 3 Lotus Connections
• 4 WebSphere Portal Search
• 5 Procedures
• 5.1 Creating Lotus Connections crawlers
• 5.2 Creating a content source
• 5.3 Troubleshooting
• 5.4 Crawling the content
• 5.5 Starting the content sources manually

Worth a read ….

Monday 7 November 2011

Cateye HL-EL530 Cycle Light

Well, I've just taken delivery of a new front-light for my bicycle - a Cateye HL-EL530.

Haven't yet had a chance to road-test it, but I nearly fell at the first hurdle when I couldn't open the darn light to fit the batteries.

However, the internet had the answer, the internet is my friend.

Or, to be more specific, this YouTube video did the job - thanks to CycleWare for posting it.

Essentially, it's all in the twist …..

Will post a more full review tomorrow ...

Sunday 6 November 2011

Import pictures from Domino database into IBM Connections

Saw this on Robert Farstad's blog, and thought it was worth a re-post

Many organizations who buy IBM Connections already have a employee pictures database in Domino of some sort.

I do believe this would work for all kinds of domino databases, either if you are using the names.nsf or some other picture DB. You just have to find the correct fields in the domino db you are using.

In this scenario, the Iterator is a standalone pictures DB, called pictures.nsf. The field "bc_mapping" contains an email-address of the user. This is used as the link-criteria when doing a lookup to the employee table. The Employee table then gives us the "PROF_KEY" value for that profile/employee, which I then use in the link criteria in the Photo table.

Friday 4 November 2011

Enabling and Disabling SSL Redirection in IBM WebSphere Portal

This is something that came up in a recent project, where we noticed that we were unable to access our WebSphere Portal environment whilst the front-end IBM HTTP Server (IHS) servers were down.

This is a bit of a PITA as we wanted to access the Portal instance directly on, say, TCP port 10039/10040 whilst IHS was down(ish), allowing us to do systems maintenance whilst the end-users get a nice friendly "Closed for maintenance" page.

When I dug into the configuration with the SME who built Portal for us, it turned out he'd kindly hardened Portal for us, using the redirect.login.ssl and host.port.https Custom Properties for the WP ConfigService Resource Environment Provider.

This Wiki post says it far more elegantly than can I.


Thursday 3 November 2011

5 Reasons to Attend Lotusphere 2012

IBM Sametime Standard 8.5.2 - Port allocations for NAT traversal

Saw this on my IBM Connections homepage this morning, thanks to the Recommendations widget on the Updates page, and thought it might be of use to me ( and others ) at some point down the line.

The Sametime® Connect client will dynamically allocate UDP ports as a result of ICE negotiation.

Ephemeral ports are allocated on clients and are assigned by the client's operating system. Ephemeral ports are usually in the range of 1024-5000 and are dynamically re-allocated by the operating system as needed. Proper function of the Sametime NAT traversal feature requires open access to UDP ports on both the TURN server and the Media Manager's Packet Switcher.

Note: UDP is the preferred protocol; TCP should be used only if UDP is not available (for example, due to company policy).

Introduction to IBM Lotus Domino 8.5 XPages - Available on OpenCourseWare on the IBM Lotus Greenhouse

Saw this in my inbox this morning, and thought it worth sharing.

Not sure if I have the brain-power to learn XPages right now, but it's definitely hot technology, being used in many IBM Lotus products, including Quickr for Lotus Domino.

If you're interested in knowing more, check this out: -

The OpenCourseWare (OCW) movement,  part of the larger Open Educational Resources (OER) movement, was pioneered 10 years ago when the Massachusetts Institute of Technology launched its OpenCourseWare initiative, making educational course materials in digital form available on a free and open basis to all. 

ISSL Education is pleased to announce an OpenCourseWare Pilot in  IBM Lotus Greenhouse. The free courseware available, as part of this pilot is the material used in the instruction of Course D8L55 - Introduction to IBM Lotus Domino 8.5 XPages. The timing for building Social Business application development skills that leverage XPages technology could not be better - especially with the recent announcement of the Domino 8.5.3 XWork Server.  
 Here are a few key points about the OpenCourseWare Pilot :
Materials usage is intended for those who would like to setup their own environment and self-instruct on XPages.
Classroom and self-paced eLearning versions of this course are available (at the public list price) for individuals who prefer formal instruction and lab support.
A variety of additional XPages Application Development courses are available for a fee to continue your study of this technology and further develop your skills. 
To access and download the free courseware you need to be a member of Lotus Greenhouse.  
Already a member? Login to access "Introduction to IBM Lotus Domino 8.5 XPages" courseware.

With the launch of this pilot, ISSL Education takes a step forward to advance informal learning through the sharing and use of free, quality educational materials to build skills in the marketplace.

Please share this announcement with peers, partners and clients.

Thank You!

IBM Connections Widgets - JustNudge are up to their tricks again ;-)

Following on from my earlier post about Michael Ransley and his widgety ways, JustNudge have released another one: -

Today we are proud to release our latest widget for IBM Connections. This widget allows an IBM Connections user to associate their profile with their twitter feed and have the feed displayed when someone views their profile.

This widget uses a profile extension to allow the user to populate their twitter username using the edit profile functionality of IBM Connections.

For a limited time, Just Nudge is releasing this widget to the IBM Connections community free of charge.  To get the widget see our Twitter widget product page.  If you require any further information please contact us via email at

Tuesday 1 November 2011

Apple Macintosh OSX and Keyboard Shortcuts

Had two reasons to look up OSX  keyboard shortcuts today.

The first was to find out how to pull up the Apple (  ) menu at the top-left corner of the screen; the one that contains "About This Mac", "Software Update' etc.

Thanks to this YouTube video, I now know that it is: -

[fn] [Ctrl] [Shift] [F2]

and that hitting the [Space] bar allows one to pull down the menu, and select the appropriate command e.g. "App Store", "Force Quit" etc.

The second keyboard trick was in relation to a Twitter correspondent asking how to print the  symbol ( that's the Apple logo ).

The trick is: -

[alt] [Shift] [K]



*UPDATE* 02/11/2011 - One of my US colleagues, Mike Alexander, also came up with Dashkards (sic) as another good source of keyboard shortcut goodness

Visual Studio Code - Wow 🙀

Why did I not know that I can merely hit [cmd] [p]  to bring up a search box allowing me to search my project e.g. a repo cloned from GitHub...