Tuesday, March 1, 2005

Lotusphere questions, Lotusphere answers


By Mick Moignard

Lotusphere isn't just hoopla and breakout sessions. There's a great deal more to it than that. Several rooms in the Dolphin are set-aside as "labs", as well as the certification exam room in the Swan. Each lab covers a different subject area: IBM Innovation, Performance and TCO, Mobile, Application Development, and "Meet the Developers".

"Meet the Developers" is where some of the guys and gals from the Notes and Domino development team, and the various Workplace development teams, are available to answer questions from attendees. Each year, throughout the year, but increasingly towards 'Sphere time, I collect questions I can't find answers to. I then plan to spend some time at Lotusphere asking these questions in the labs. Sometimes, but not always, I get answers.

Now, it's a bit sobering to remember that Notes and Domino are pretty big pieces of code these days, so while the people you talk with may know some parts of the code better than anyone else on Earth, it's not uncommon to find you can't get an answer to the question you ask because there may not be anybody there who knows about the area you are looking at. Here are a number of questions I've asked over the years, and the answers I got. They aren't in any particular order, and they aren't all from Sphere 2005.

Transaction logging

Transaction logging appeared in R5, using technology that came from DB2. It enables completed Notes transactions to be replayed on a server restart, and also enables Notes-aware backup systems to be able to roll a database forward to a point in time. When will developers get some sort of access to this in order to define Notes units of work, and/or be able to commit or roll back Notes data updates as required?

This is something that's been thought of. I got the impression that in fact it's something for which there have been some specific plans for past versions, but which have tended to get rolled off the development schedule in favour of other things. So it won't be in 7, but who knows if and when it might appear. Do any of you have any need for this functionality? Please let us know.

Notes 7 DB2 Query View

When I create a Notes 7 DB2 Query View that joins data together from multiple DB2 sources, I can join data from different parts of the same Notes database, from different Notes databases, or Notes to non-Notes data in other DB2 databases. How do I determine what Notes documents open when I double-click the view entry?

You need to include a #NoteID column in the view. All the Notes fields that are referenced in a DB2 Query View must have been surfaced to DB2 first by being accessed in a DAV (DB2 Access View). Each DB2 Access View has a #NoteID column that references the NoteID of the documents; this is the mechanism that connects the physical document to the view row. In the DB2 Query View, you include the #NoteID column from the DAV that defines the Notes document you want opened when the view is clicked. And there's nothing to stop you from using a DB2 connector to populate some fields in the document from DB2 data from other Notes databases, or even non-Notes data elsewhere in DB2.