Notes 7 kludge on the Mac

by Volker Weber

Ed Maloney comments on

From a meeting at the Apple WWDC last month ;
Lotus Notes: We met with Todd Bxxx, Apple's liaison with Lotus/IBM. Here's the Map of Notes releases for the Mac:
- Version 6.5.2 (just released?): Supports Panther
- 6.5.3 Will support Tiger (Should be released concurrently)
- 6.54/7.0: To be released in H1 2005, Lotus will have 6.5.4 on the client fully compatible with version 7.0 on the server. Lotus will make up for 7.0 client features by adding them as separate apps: A browser-based "SameTime" IM client and a "QuickPlace" app.
- Version 8.0 will have full parity (release date unknown of course). There will never be a 7.0 client on the Mac.

In absence of better IBM communication this sounds reasonably correct.

Update 2004-8-12: We now have an official statement from Lotus.


It kind of makes sense, but who is Ed Maloney?

Ken Porter, 2004-08-10

Interesting. If I read between the lines, I can conclude that:
(1) If 6.5.4 is released H1 2005, then 6.5.3 will be released before that, probably somewhere in Q4/2004 or Q1/2005. And if it's released concurrently with Tiger, this also means that Tiger will be released around that time.
(2) If 8.0 will have full parity between Windows and Macintosh, this means that Notes 8 will be the Workplace Client, and the Notes client as we know it will probably be no more.
Then again, I could be wrong ...

Pascal Frencken, 2004-08-11

No, Pascal, you are not wrong.

IBM has two interesting challenges:

1. How to peddle this story without the conclusion that Notes 7 is the end of the line and that 8 only continues to use the name ...

2. How to convince people to upgrade from 7 to 8 if ths mean a substantial new investment in terms of administration and servers.

Volker Weber, 2004-08-11

Would it really matter, if the Notes 8 Client might be based on a different Technology - e.g. Workplace Client Technology - if it was fully compatible to the prior Versions?

Arnd Layer, 2004-08-11

From 10000 ft above it does not.

But as you get closer you will have tons of challenges. To name just a few:

- What are the hardware for the WP client compared to the Notes client?
- How do you deploy the WP client compared to the Notes client?
- What additional server infrastructure do you need?
- Can you install and run the WP client without a server infrastructure?
- How do your tools and admin processes change as you deploy the new client?

The WP client will run a local web application server much as the DOLS client ran a local web server. For a Notes plugin to the WP client you will need to run an additional Notes "server" and a Notes PKI with Notes.inis. That does not sound like a solution that makes life easier than a "legacy" Notes client.

You may call me pessimistic, but maybe you can name one IBM software product that became more lightweight than its predecessor. :-)

Volker Weber, 2004-08-11

I think the discussion is often too focused on the Workplace client which is tightly bound to the Workplace Server. I was suggesting the underlying technology (eclipse, ...) Eclipse is really easy to install. IBM built an infrastructure which makes it easy to deploy the workplace client in an enterprise. So the technology offers both.
If the functionality of a Notes client is implemented based on Eclipse, this would offer a lot of new opportunities in the J2EE area.
The key to success is compatibility - and look at the DB2 integration of Domino 7 where this rule is obeyed.
I know Notes / Domino since 3.3 and like the changes a lot. Maybe we'll get true multitasking for all activities with a switch in technology.

Arnd Layer, 2004-08-12

Maybe we'll get true multitasking

You mean multithreading? I doubt it, since it the plugin relies on existing technology.

think the discussion is often too focused on the Workplace client which is tightly bound to the Workplace Server.

But that is what the Notes 8 client will be all about. No Workplace server, no Notes client.

Did you notice, that you have not addressed any of the concerns I voiced above? I am not telling that IBM cannot pull this off. But I stand by my point that it will ve very challenging. I know the propaganda very well. But WP is really, really hard, even if it works as designed. We have not even touched on what happens when things go wrong. Compare this to Notes. The issues addressed in the KBase are not necessarily reflected in the marketing brochures.

Volker Weber, 2004-08-12

The migration *price* to Workplace will be right for any customers with a maintenance agreement. I think the question is whether it will be worth the *cost*.

Also - At LS2004, Todd (from Apple) mentioned that there were some components that Apple needed to add to Safari for IBM. Based on the timelines above, it would seem that those enhancements will be available with Tiger. So now all I need is just a little patience....

Richard van Geilswyk, 2004-08-12

Re Safari, my understanding is that support is (theoretically) already there: IBM were waiting on LiveConnect support, and 1.2 has that.

Ben Poole, 2004-08-12

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