ICS/Lotus (mostly), Linux, Travel, Skiing, Mixology, and Random Musing of Interest

Update: IBM Notes on MacOS High Sierra Support

Bill Malchisky  November 30 2017 02:00:00 AM
Ever since Apple released High Sierra (macOS 10.13) on 25 September 2017, there have been some interesting hiccups with certain network reliant products. I’ve worked with people on resetting encryption key rings for VPN tools and IPSEC connections, as one example. On the IBM side and as many of you know, Notes on Mac x64 has been a challenge (Including other IBM products). In working very closely with IBM on this issue, I wanted you to know the latest status.

Issue Summary
1. If you install Notes fresh on High Sierra, Notes will crash during the installation. If you keep at it, you will be successful, but the number of installation attempts varied a bit in our testing; the Technote (see below) states a second time shall succeed; in some cases we had to go more than that, but in the end, it would install. Thus, the installer instability is a problem;

2. If Notes is installed before upgrading to High Sierra, then Notes will keep working fine upon upgrading the macOS. In testing on my own iMac, installing Notes before upgrading to High Sierra worked well, though, I did notice that occasionally, the background on some icons changed colors until Notes is restarted. Example, the image icon inside an Action Button;

3. Additionally, we observed the installation issue both on the iMac and MBP platforms, so the installer issue does not appear to be hardware related.

Technote on IBM Support for Notes on High Sierra

Issue Update
* IBM reported that the fix would be released on 25 October 2017
* As of 30 November, IBM is still working on a quality, stable, reliable update
* IBM promised me an ETA by Friday, 1 December with when the fix will be available for my team to test
* Although conjecture, I suspect the broad reaching changes High Sierra introduced are delaying IBM's release
* With my client, we opened a PMR on 2 October and immediately worked closely with IBM on a fix
* We held (and continue) weekly meetings which include this PMR
* My direct communications with our assigned IBM L2 Support Technician are frequent and on-going
* It is import to note that IBM is also experiencing this issue and escalated internally through their own PMR
* I am not authorized to indicate how high or by whom, but know this matter is getting the correct attention inside IBM

Resolution Request
* My ask of IBM is to provide a stable reliable Notes 9.0.1 installer containing the latest IF2 patch
* That way we can do things in one shot, after waiting so long
* Honestly, we have not received a confirmation on whether they will provide just the installer or combine the patch, but that is our request

Let me know if you have any additional questions.


    Last Chance for Nominating IBM Champions

    Bill Malchisky  November 30 2017 10:01:00 PM
    Just a quick reminder that today, 30 November 2017 is the last day to nominate someone (or re-nominate yourself) for the status of IBM Champion.

    IBM Champions Nomination Form

    Additional Links Of Interest
    Information on the IBM Champion Program
    Seven Ways To Know An IBM Champion

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CxAsJImW8AAeadR.jpg style=

    IBM Domino and Docker Support Announced

    Bill Malchisky  August 15 2017 08:00:00 PM
    During Barry Rosen's Future directions on Notes/Domino session and again during our Linuxfest DC session last week at MWLUG, IBM announced that they will support Domino on Docker with Domino 9.0.1 FP10. Originally, this support would be announced in 2018, but due to the success of the IBM Application Insights Survey announced at Engage, IBM changed their task priorities and accelerated Docker support based upon your input.

    FP10 is scheduled to be released by EOY 2017. The next question is, "What does support imply?" Currently, if you call IBM and ask them for support and tell them you are running Domino in a Docker container on Linux, you will be told, "That configuration is not supported." Once FP10 is released, you can use Domino on Docker as a valid platform.

    Next, I asked Barry about supporting as a deliverable a Docker image file. Thus, "Will be be able to type, 'docker pull domino' and get an image?" He replied that is not part of the original plan, but under consideration.

    Finally, as I discussed with a few MWLUG attendees after Linuxfest DC and also during my last session, I want to provide a few points on deploying Domino intelligently inside a docker container
    1. Feel free to create your own docker image files locally so you can deploy internally Domino in a Docker container
    2. Be certain that you only include the installation files for Domino in the image
    3. Avoid installing or completing server setup within your image file or you'll have multiple servers deployed and running with the same server ID and server name
    4. Ensure that you also keep confidential or otherwise sensitive information out of your image files -- especially if any Docker image you create should be published to the Docker container catalog

    Nice to see that IBM is making great strides to improve what they offer and listen once again to the great IBM Community.

    Any questions, please feel free to ask.

    Image:IBM Domino and Docker Support Announced Image:IBM Domino and Docker Support Announced

    Attention IBM Customers and BPs, Be Heard! New IBM Notes/Domino Application Survey

    Bill Malchisky  August 14 2017 08:00:00 PM
    After the success of the first IBM survey announced at our IBM Engage session in May (see link to post)---which helped to re-prioritize new capabilities like Docker---Barry Rosen announced a new survey at MWLUG. I completed it and am pleased with this survey's focus on APIs, app modernization, along with creating a new feeling that IBM is serious about Domino as an application development platform.

    The first survey results really had an impact and moved up significantly Docker support (more shortly here); kudos to you if you took the time to be heard. Please take a few minutes to let the thoughts of yourself, your company, and perhaps your colleagues be sent to the minds at IBM. They are reading and acting upon your input.

    This will be covered in more detail during our Linuxfest DC session on Thursday, 10 Aug too.

    Survey Link

    Image:Attention IBM Customers and BPs, Be Heard! New IBM Notes/Domino Application Survey

      IBM Think 2018 Session Abstract Submission Date Announced

      Bill Malchisky  August 13 2017 08:00:00 PM
      IBM announced that commencing on 21 Aug 2017, you can submit abstracts for IBM Think 2018. As of this writing, there does not appear to be information on session tracks, other than a pop-up informing prospective presenters to be creative. As I've watched the conference site frequently over the past few weeks, no additional information being available on tracks, implies to me we will learn this on Monday, 21 Aug. Thus, if you are considering submitting a session, you can start thinking about what you might like to offer the community--if you haven't already done so. If you do submit a session, I wish you the best of luck in getting selected.

      Useful Links

      Simplified conference URL: ibm.com/think2018
      For conference updates - follow @ibmlive and #ibmthink
      Event location - Mandalay Bay Resort, Las Vegas, NV
      Sponsors & Exhibitors - Send e-mail here

      Image:IBM Think 2018 Session Abstract Submission Date Announced

      MWLUG - Linuxfest DC Guest Speaker Announced

      Bill Malchisky  August 2 2017 02:31:06 AM
      On Thursday, 10 Aug 2017, I will be presenting Linuxfest DC at this year's MWLUG located in DC. In order to provide an informative experience for attendees, I sought a special guest speaker to join me. Today, I am pleased to announce Barry Rosen will be co-presenting with me for an extended special breakfast session. We will be covering IBM's current Linux strategy, plus provide technical information to ensure that all session attendees gain knowledge they can use immediately upon returning from the event. Breakfast will be served. Both Barry and myself look forward to seeing you at our session.

      If you haven't registered for MWLUG, there are still a few spaces left. Please register here. See you in DC!

      Session Abstract
      SA105 - Linuxfest DC - Technical Brief and Discourse for ICS on Linux
      Thursday, August 10, 2017 | 07:45 AM - 09:00 AM | Beech Room

      The Linuxfest international tour continues! A lot is changing in the world of IBM and Linux. For example, with the emergence of Docker and Pink, Linux is now a critical component within any organization building and managing dynamic and scalable solutions. Join Bill Mal and Barry Rosen to get the latest on the current strategy regarding Notes, Domino, and Docker, on Linux. Whether you are a Linux newbie, a pro, or just curious, bring your questions to receive honest answers that always foster great dialogue from the IBM Community. IBM has a longstanding commitment to Linux, let us hear if their strategy still aligns with your business. After eight years at Lotusphere and Connect, we are happy to be making our debut at MWLUG. Join us!

      "As We Age, Don’t Give Up. Keep Doing." And More Wisdom from George Jedenoff’s "The Powder Philosophy"

      Bill Malchisky  June 30 2017 07:40:00 PM
      Well, I inadvertently held this post, so let's publish it now. In early 2016---in his then 56th consecutive year of skiing at Alta and Snowbird in Utah---Mr. George Jedenoff at the age of 98 took a few minutes to discuss his Powder Philosophy. A positive uplifting message that will leave you with a smile. Worth a few minutes to view and learn a bit from his years of wisdom. He still rips groomers and fresh powder, while also enjoying tree skiing--again at 98 years old.

      Stay healthy, believe in moderation, remain physically fit, and you just may be as mentally aware and capable as this guy at his age. Let's end the first half of 2017 with a great message going into the holiday weekend (US).
      Watch the four minute video here.

      "Don't worry about the fact that you could do something better than you can now. The fact that you can do it now is important. Too many people give up, they get discouraged because they are not as good as they were. Well, that is a part of life. Just make the most of it." --George Jedenoff

      Do You Have An Opinion on the Domino Application Platform Direction? Read This.

      Bill Malchisky  May 18 2017 12:15:00 AM
      As Barry Rosen mentioned during our Engage session last week, ICS Offering Management is seeking feedback around the Domino application platform. This opportunity is significant enough that I felt it appropriate to author a separate post.

      Currently, IBM is looking for feedback in the areas of APIs, XPages, Domino on Bluemix, Docker, and well, anything else you want to add in the development space. I took the survey and found it to be straight forward with plenty of opportunity to provide your input. IBM Management is reviewing these survey results with great interest. So, take a few minutes and let them know how you are using IBM Domino applications and where you want the future direction to venture.

      Here is the link to the IBM Application Insights Survey.

      Image:Do You Have An Opinion on the Domino Application Platform Direction? Read This.

      The ICS on Linux Round Table Session Notes

      Bill Malchisky  May 15 2017
      Great session last Monday. We filled the table with overflow and discussed many good topics raised by the attendees. Below are the notes and some of the URLs cited during the event. Please feel free to comment and keep the discussion going.

      IBM Notes

      FP7 is the last update for the Linux client;, no further feature packs will be offered for the Linux client
      Support will be best effort from here and will continued to be support up to 9.0.1 FP7 on thee then current set of operating systems. If you upgrade your Linux OS to a newer release and Notes is malfunctioning, IBM Support will request that you try the client on the FP7 set of supported operating systems before you continue the support conversation
      Mac client was discussed at length
      ** IBM is looking at the correct time to drop-in a FP parity with the Windows client
      ** This is a high priority item
      *** They suspect FP 10 will be the earliest time-frame for consideration, as FP9 is locked-down already, but this is not a commitment, for clarity
      ** Until then, Mac users can enjoy the x64 client, but use as is until a FP is offered
      We also discussed an auto-updater for Notes
      ** A high priority item within the set of features to provide
      ** Availability Q1 '18, possible, but not definite yet
      ** Touch client once and that is it
      ** Controlled in Policy settings document
      FP9 will mostly contain Java, Eclipse, and compile time updates


      IBM will support existing Linux flavors on Domino 9.0.1 with all succeeding feature packs
      Going forward, a theoretical (in naming not release probability) Domino 9.5 and Domino 10 would be only RHEL
      FP8 dropped i386 flavors
      Sametime was an issue as the STCS needs an i386 build with an older Domino version for now, which should not be an issue if STCS is the only server application on that box
      New offerings ---  e.g. Verse on Premises and INSMO --- are RHEL and Windows only
      **Know this OS platform policy is not an ICS decision, but a software group directive; every brand is impacted
      Cloud based offering under consideration with Domino playing the PaaS role through Bluemix
      ** Buy time to use and test as needed, billed at an hourly rate


      A question around offering D9.0.1 with the latest FP pre-installed offered a brief discussion
      ** Silent installers and scripts are available to assist
      ** Smart upgrade needs help
      ** Decision - "No," on joint installer as there are too many assumptions that would need to be made and applying a fix pack with a script takes a small amount of time when scripted

      We received a request for working with (supporting) unsupported Linux
      ** To assist, the group mostly agreed on CentOS support would be appreciated
      ** And we requested that IBM provide support for CentOS in production with a "Best effort support" option if full support proved too expensive for IBM
      ** Barry offered that a Domino on Docker offering may resolve some of the support issues...

      Speaking of Docker
      Connections Pink

      Looking at the IBM applications insights survey (link below) to provide input on their application strategy
      ** If you do have questions on docker, then please take the survey
      Also, looking at Domino for PaaS on Bluemix through Docker
      ** Benefits aren't as great due to the ease of install, but it would allow for keeping things current and consistent

      Miscellaneous Questions

      Issues or concerns when moving from Windows to Linux on Domino
      ** Filename spaces and case
      ** ExtMgr add-in converts all requests to lower case
      ** Try Domino4Wine for your admin and DDE needs on a Linux or Mac client
      ** You can also run a simple script to case convert all files to lower case
      ** Hardcoded fully explicit paths (c:\...) rather than Data directory relative paths and filenames can be an issue
      ** Direct reference of OS specific files (e.g. DLLs) can also be an issue

      Presenter Links for Additional Information

      Daniel's Links

      Start Stop Script
      Ask for his installation scripts, case convert ExtMgr add-in, or Domino Consolidation session deck  

      Barry's Links

      IBM performance data - Windows v Linux
      IBM application insights survey

      Bill's Links

      Linux Skype Chat
      Domino Admin on Linux tips, then select these two decks
      1. BLUG 2013: The Ultimate IBM and Lotus on Linux Workshop for Windows Admins
      2. Linux School: Advanced Administration for IBM Software

      "Why the Largest Companies in the World Count on Linux Servers"

      Bill Malchisky  May 8 2017 09:00:00 PM
      I read this morning a great piece in Linux Journal by Petros Koutoupis. The author's name being new to me, I read the article with an open mind. What I found is this introductory level article offered a decent dissection of this important topic. As I've covered over the years in my Lotus on Linux Report presentation series, more companies outside of Microsoft use Linux for their edge servers than any other operating system. That data point continues to this day. Additionally, despite recent desktop support changes, IBM has and still does a lot for Linux behind the scenes, and anticipate covering some of that in my Engage session later today. What surprised me was my learning that Mr. Koutoupis works for IBM. You would not know that until the end of the article. So he wrote --- in my opinion --- a very fair and informative piece.

      If you have customers that want to know why they should use Linux or are afraid, then some aspects of Mr. Koutoupis' article may help you in those conversations. You can also refer to my presentation, entitled, "Lowering Costs: Should We Consider Lotus on Linux?"

      Title: "Why the Largest Companies in the World Count on Linux Servers"
      Source: Linux Journal
      Author: Petros Koutoupis
      Publication Date: May 7, 2017

      There are also two links in his article of importance
      1. Hybrid Cloud Security with z Systems
      2. Learn more about LinuxONE's ability to help business consolidate servers

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