NDDM Technical Manual

NDDM Technical Manual

IBM Notes Domino Application Scan and Analysis tool.

Optimized for Domino Server decommission projects.

 

Lialis will always support your Domino Server Application Scan in short daily remote calls to ensure a perfect and swift scan.

 

Scan steps overview and introduction

To achieve the best scanning result in the shortest time frame, we advise you to carry out the below listed scan sequence.
Each step in the table below is explained in detail in this post.

Preparations
  • NDDM relies heavily on Domino server to server replication. Prior to rolling out NDDM in your Domino environment it is advisable to make sure that the current Domino Hub / Spoke server replication document setup is configured perfectly and it will allow swift replication of NDDM.nsf between all Domino servers in the Domino Domain. If your connection documents hold file names, then NDDM will not replicate, please check this out. A good approach is to create a dedicated Hub to Spoke server replication document with an interval of 5 minutes, that for only replicating the NDDM.nsf file.
  • NDDM will run a agent that will scan all Notes databases on all Domino servers. NDDM will be signed with a certain signer ID. This signer ID must be listed in all Domino server documents in below field “Sign or run unrestricted methods and operations”
  • The signer ID must be added to the ACL of NDDM.nsf.
  • All Notes apps on the Domino servers to be scanned must have the hosting Domino server in the ACL, with all roles enabled. A good practice is to make sure that the LocalDomainServers group is present in all Notes database ACL’s with all ACL roles enabled.
  • Please review the Agent Manager task settings in the Domino server documents of the Domino servers to be scanned by NDDM. Notes content scanning may take a few hours or days, depending on the size of the Notes databases on the Domino server. It is recommended to increase the agent manager run time, for example to 12 hours (720 minutes). If the scan takes more time, then there is no problem: NDDM will continue the scan at the point where it was interrupted in the previous scan.

  • User activity recording has to be enabled for all Notes databases. The scheduled server task load statlog will take care of this. Please check for this task to be present in notes.ini or as a server program document in the Domino Directory. Check some random nsf files to verify if user activity recording is enabled. If user activity recording is not enabled, running the Domino server command load statlog will enable user activity recording. If load statlog does not do anything, then please check the notes.ini for No_Force_Activity_Logging. If you find this setting, you can remove it or set the value to 0 (instead of  1).
  • Carefully read the section “Supported Notes and Domino builds” on this page. Certain Domino server releases on certain OS need a notes.ini settings LS64BITCCALLOUTPointerSupport=1.  For some of the 64-bit Domino servers, this setting is required to fix a Domino 32/64 bit incompatibility issue that otherwise would prevent the NDDM from performing a server-based Notes Database user activity scan.
Setup and roll out
  • Install the NDDM Notes application on the first Domino HUB server
  • Set the ACL of the NDDM Notes application, add the signer ID to the ACL with manager access, do the same for the server group containing all servers in your domain.
  • Sign the NDDM Notes application with an ID that is allowed to run unrestricted agents (allow restricted operations)
  • Use NDDM to create NDDM replicas to all Domino servers to be scanned in your Domino domain, or use AdminP to rollout NDDM to all Spoke servers.
Import databases
  • Instruct all Domino servers to import the Notes database file names in NDDM
  • Wait for replication to deliver the results to NDDM on the HUB server
  • Review the exclusion list, exclude all Domino system and Admin databases
User activity scan
  • Run the server based user activity, on one Domino server that holds many or the most Notes databases
  • After the first run, you can exclude all discovered non-real end user accounts (e.g. admin, signer, system, server accounts).
  • Then run the activity scan a few times more. During these successive runs, accounts previously excluded will not be found. However, new non-real  end user accounts may surface. Exclude these as well.
  • Continue excluding non-real end user accounts until only real end users are found in the user activity, or the scan returns na (‘not applicable’) for certain Notes databases (this means the user activity does not hold real end users).
  • Now you are set to scan all other Domino servers for user activity. Keep on adding newly discovered non-real end user accounts to the exclude list and rescan these Notes databases.
  • Continue this process until all Notes databases are scanned for user activity, and the scan only returns real end user accounts or na’s.
Content and design scan
  • Instruct all Domino servers to carry out the content and the design scan
  • Wait for replication to deliver the results to NDDM on the HUB server
Review content scan
  • A small number of Notes databases may not have been scanned by the Domino server
  • Re-scan these Notes databases using the manual scan option, with the Notes administrator client full access administration enabled.
Database read protected
  • Re-scan the Notes databases displayed in the view “Database Read protected” using the manual scan option with Notes administrator client full access administration enabled. This way all Notes documents will be scanned.
Target calculation
  • Make sure the Notes database user activity and content scan are completed for all Notes databases
  • Set the target calculation cut-off date, for example 1 or 2 years in the past (as per your choice)
  • Run the target calculation against all Notes databases
  • Export the results to Excel and review them in conjunction with Lialis (send us the Excel to review)
Optional: Run design keywords scan on Replace Notes databases (server/client based agent)
  • Run the ‘Scan Design on Keywords’ scan on the Notes databases that have the target ‘Replace’. This helps you find the Notes databases that are, for example, sending workflow approval emails (in this example type the keywords: @MailSend and notes://). This scan also allows you to find ODBC connections to a certain server (in this example type the specific SQL server name).
Optional: Run deep doclinks scan on Replace Notes databases (server/client based agent)
  • Run the ‘Deep Scan Doclinks’ scan on the Notes databases with the target Replace. This scan is relevant for the Notes content migration to another platform.
Optional: Run reader and author fields scan on Replace Notes databases (client based agent)
  • Run the ‘Scan Readers/Authors fields selected docs’ scan to find out how the Notes databases are using reader and author fields

 

Except for ‘readers/authors’ scan, all scan tasks are carried out by the Domino server. Scanning may also be done by the Notes client at much lower scan speeds though.

Supported Notes and Domino builds

Supported Notes and Domino builds

NDDM runs a scheduled agent on Domino servers to carry out the scan. Therefore NDDM has been tested extensively on the newest versions of all relevant Domino server major releases: R6, R7, R8, R9, R10 and R11; on both Windows and Linux operating systems, 32 and 64 bits servers. We expect lower Domino servers versions will not pose any problems. However, if you run lower Domino server builds (R4, R5), we advise you to contact us so we can give these versions a test run. Please consult the following list with Domino versions/platforms that we tested NDDM on.

Summary of tested configurations:

Windows/32
Release 9.0.1 FP8|February 23, 2017 Build 405
Release 9.0.1 October 14, 2013 Build 405
Release 8.5.3 FP6|November 21, 2013 Build 390
Release 7.0.2 September 26, 2006 Build 265
Release 6.5.5 November 30, 2005 Build 198

Windows/64
Release 11.0 .1 FP2|October 20, 2020 Build 452 *
Release 10.0.1 FP6|September 24, 2020 Build 450 *
Release 9.0.1 FP10 HF747|July 24, 2020 Build 405
Release 8.5.3 FP6 HF3175|April 28, 2017 Build 390

Linux/32
Release 9.0.1 October 14, 2013 Build 405

Linux/64
Release 11.0.1 FP2|October 20, 2020 Build 452 *
Release 11.0 November 25, 2019 Build 451 *
Release 10.0.1 November 29, 2018 Build 450 *
Release 9.0.1 October 14, 2013 Build 405 *

*) notes.ini setting required: LS64BITCCALLOUTPointerSupport=1

The required notes.ini settings for some of the 64-bit servers is a fix that has been applied because of 32/64 bit incompatibility. This setting is necessary for the relevant server to perform a user activity scan on a database. When an argument is passed by reference, the C function receives a 32-bit pointer to the value area. API calls from LotusScript on a 64-bit Domino server will fail (crash) when an 64-bit pointer is expected.

For example: when a variable is a pointer that is passed by reference, this works perfect on a Domino 32-bit server when this variable is defined in LotusScript as a Long. However, the same situation on a 64-bit Domino server – where the variable is defined in LotusScript as a (64-bit) Double – makes the server crash.

In order to be able to return the pointer in double, you need to set environment variable LS64BITCCALLOUTPointerSupport=1

You can set this variable by directly editing the server’s notes.ini, or by issuing a console command on the server:

set config LS64BITCCALLOUTPointerSupport=1

A server restart is not necessary after this notes.ini change. It will take effect immediately.

After adding the Notes.ini setting, the Agent Manager task has to be restarted on the Domino server.

During our extensive testing, we learned which servers this setting should apply to. If a user activity scan is initiated on such a server – and this setting is not found in the server’s notes.ini – this is reported in the scan log on the Task document. The database scan will continue its run, but the user activity scan task is skipped.

Furthermore, if a scheduled User Activity scan task is run from a server that may very well run without problems, but was not tested by us, we don’t allow the agent to run the User Activity scan anyway. Other scan tasks are allowed though. The Task document log will tell you that the User Activity scan is not possible on this server.

This also applies to non-tested 32 bit servers. As mentioned above, we tested the newest versions of all relevant Domino server major releases from R6 up to R11. Only on these Domino servers, the server-based agent is allowed to do a User Activity scan. If one of your servers is not allowed to do the User Activity scan, there are 2 options:

Option 1: run a User Activity scan from the client (background agent). This option is recommended.

Option 2: ask a Notes developer to adjust the script library called ‘slPlatformInfo’ to include your server. When you choose this option, please be VERY careful, and make sure you run a test before you apply this on the production server. You can also contact Lialis to perform this test and adjust the script.

If for whatever reason the agent is interrupted during the scan (for example by an unexpected error, or an automatic Domino server reboot or crash), the Notes database that the agent was processing at the time of the interruption is skipped when the NDDM scan agent starts again. Just in case the scan of this database has caused a server crash, omitting this database in the successive run prevents the server from crashing again. The skipped database is logged:

Domino server performance impact

Domino server performance impact

All scanning tasks are carried out by the Domino server on its own local Notes databases by a NDDM Lotus Script agent. See image below:

Domino server based scan of the Notes database user activity. The impact on the Domino server is zero because the scan is very fast. For example scanning 100.000 Notes databases will take less than 10 minutes (depended on server speed).

Domino Server based scan of the Notes database content. The impact on the Domino server performance is average; not high and not low. The agent will scan each Notes document in all Notes databases on the Domino server running the scan. The scans are very fast because the Domino servers scan their local Notes files. However, a single Domino server scan can take up to a few days depending on the amount of Notes files on the Domino server.

NDDM has been designed in such manner that multiple Domino servers will run their own local scans in a parallel operation, resulting in enormous scan speeds. So, scanning 1 Domino server will take the same amount of time (a day or 2) as scanning 10 or even 100 Domino servers.

The Domino server agent manager must allow long agent run times of at least 6 hours (12 hours is even better). If the Domino agent manager cuts off the NDDM scan agent there is no problem. The NDDM scan agent will pick up the Notes database scan in the new run at the exact moment it was interrupted in the previous run.

A Domino administrator can adjust the NDDM scan agent, simply by adjusting the Agent schedule. For example to set the NDDM agent to only run at night time.

 

With NDDM we have scanned many Notes databases, from small to extremely large. The database in the example below holds 115,087 Notes documents and the NSF file size is 51 GB. The Notes content scan of this particular NSF file took 30 minutes.

01/06/2021 05:57:09 PM GMT – Start Database Analysis
01/06/2021 05:57:09 PM GMT – Start scanning Design Elements
01/06/2021 05:59:25 PM GMT – Finished scanning Design Elements
01/06/2021 05:59:26 PM GMT – Start scanning content (incl. scan links)
01/06/2021 06:27:51 PM GMT – Finished scanning content (incl. scan links)
01/06/2021 06:27:51 PM GMT – Finished Database Analysis

Here is an example of a small Notes database of 400 MB holding 876,430 Notes documents. The scan took 15 minutes.

01/06/2021 01:23:47 PM GMT – Start Database Analysis
01/06/2021 01:23:47 PM GMT – Start scanning Design Elements
01/06/2021 01:24:46 PM GMT – Finished scanning Design Elements
01/06/2021 01:24:46 PM GMT – Start scanning content (incl. scan links)
01/06/2021 01:38:26 PM GMT – Finished scanning content (incl. scan links)
01/06/2021 01:38:26 PM GMT – Finished Database Analysis

The scan speed depends mostly on the amount of Notes documents and to a lesser extend on the Notes database file size.

The total Notes database content scan speed also depends heavily on the Notes database setup and the OS server performance. We have managed to scan 280 GB in one hour. In this one hour, 4,823,000 Notes documents where scanned by one particular Domino server. If 100 Domino servers carry out the scan, the total scanned GBs and Notes documents can by multiplied by 100.

Setup and Configuration

Setup and Configuration

When you read this technical manual, we assume you have received the NDDM Notes database file from Lialis. It’s not possible to download an evaluation version.

Open the local NDDM Notes database with your Notes client and make a Notes database copy (with your Notes client) to the main IBM Domino (HUB) server that replicates with all other Domino servers. Make sure to include the documents in your copy. Do not copy the ACL.

Open the new NDDM Notes database copy on the first Domino server and continue.

ACL – First adjust the ACL. Make sure all Domino servers have manager access with delete permissions. Also add all administrators and viewers if applicable. You might want to add people to view the content with read permissions, or even set the default access to Reader. Add the signer ID with manager can delete permissions.

Signing – NDDM will run unrestricted scheduled agents on all Domino servers to be scanned. This means you have to sign NDDM with a Notes ID that is allowed to run unrestricted agents on each Domino server. In most environments, the ID of the Notes administrator has these privileges. You can also use a certain Domino server ID file to sign NDDM. But no worries, NDDM will report if the ID does not have enough permissions, and it has the means to adjust it later on in the scan phase.

Configuration

NDDM holds multiple Settings views listed in the left navigator where the NDDM configuration must be set prior to scanning.

Excluded Files and Folders – First exclude all Domino system files and folders from the database import. You may also want to exclude the mail folders. We already made a pre-selection of system files that we are aware of. We do this because it’s a waste of resources to scan large Domino system databases like the log.nsf. It is up to you to add additional folders and files to the exclude list prior to carry out any scanning. Because Linux servers are case-sensitive, the file/folder names entered here are case-sensitive as well.

You may use the button “Add additional files/folders” to paste files and folders to quickly setup the exclusions.

It is not a problem when some system databases were accidentally imported. You can delete these system database documents from the NDDM, and you can then improve the exclusions list after the Domino server import has been completed.

Users and servers to exclude from the user activity scan – Here you must add users and servers to exclude from the Notes database user activity scan. This step is mandatory, because filtering away all Domino servers, signer ID and names of administrators and developers will result in a much more accurate list of activity of real users. Generally, it’s not interesting to know what servers and admins are doing in a Notes database. So add as many names now. Later in this manual you will be guided how to improve this list.

Try to add as many known Domino servers and ‘unreal’ users to the exclude list. See the sample below:

You may use the button “Add additional servers/users” to paste Server and user names from Domino groups to quickly setup the exclusions.

NDDM Search keywords – The strings listed in this view will be used for the design string scan. In the setup phase we leave it for now.

NDDM Servers –  The roll-out part of NDDM allows you to create replicas of the NDDM Notes database to all (or a selection of) Domino servers in the Domino domain that you are planning to scan with NDDM. Your Notes client will create the new replicas in the Notes client background. This may take a short while depending on the amount of Domino servers you are actually going to scan and network bandwidth.

You may also use the Domino Adminp process to create NDDM replica’s.

You need to make sure that all Domino servers you are going to scan are setup with a so-called ‘pull push replication’ to the main or HUB Domino server. Normally this is the case in Domino environments. Check this anyway just to be sure.

If you have Domino cluster servers, you only need to install NDDM on the main Domino cluster server.

When all NDDM replicas are created with NDDM or via Adminp, please press the button Check NDDM Replica to make sure the NDDM file is present on each Domino server.

You may assign Keys to each group of Domino server, for example to indicate global regions where the Domino servers reside in.

NDDM – Send Errors to – If scan errors occur on a database, a button will appear on the Database info document that allows you to send the error message to the specified address.

 

Scheduled Agents

NDDM runs 4 scheduled agents, of which 3 need adjustments in the Notes Designer Client prior to running.

Agent DBDISCOVERYANALYSISONSERVER is the agent that does all of the import and analysis work. This agent needs to be able to perform restricted operations with full administration rights. This will prevent a lot of database access errors.

Agent EXPORTONSERVER creates a CSV export of all databases that are included in the NDDM tool. To enable the agent to save the CSV file on a drive, this agent should be allowed to perform restricted operations:

Agent ProcessMailingQueue sends out email messages to database owners. To make sure the message is only sent once from one server, and to provide a single reply address, this agent must

  • run on one specified server:

  • run on behalf of the reply user:

This is also described in section ‘Batch-wise send out mailings to end users for information’.

Scanning - Import Notes databases

The NDDM Notes views are set to NOT refresh automatic. This has been done to speed up the NDDM scan process. Please press F9 in the views when you are working in NDDM

At this stage all selected Domino servers have a replica of the Lialis NDDM Notes database. You do not need to open all NDDM replicas. NDDM has been designed in such a way that you can initiate all scan work in 1 NDDM Notes database on your main central HUB server. With task documents, each Domino server is instructed to carry out its own scan work. You only need to wait for the results to be replicated back to the central NDDM Notes database.

You might want to check the Domino server agent manager task settings in the Domino server documents. Scanning may take a few hours or days depending on the size. It is recommended to increase the agent manager run time to 12 hours for example. If the scan takes more time, then there is no problem: NDDM will continue the scan at the point where it was interrupted in the previous scan.

You also might want to create new Domino server replication connections documents between the HUB server and all the Domino servers to be scanned, where only the NDDM Notes database is replicated (pull push) in the shortest time interval of 5 minutes for example. This will speed up the work considerably.

Follow the order of steps as described below carefully.

Scanning – Import Notes databases. In this step, the Domino server adds a Database Info document for each database found. To make sure that no .nsf file is omitted, only information that can be retrieved regardless of database access is recorded (server, file path and -name). This task will only take a few seconds to complete.

Select one, multiple or all Domino servers. Use the Key to filter away Domino servers.

The scheduled tasks can be seen in this view:

Now wait until the Domino servers have carried out the import and the import task is completed. Each database on the server now has a Database Info document in NDDM.

A Domino server will run this Notes database import task in a few seconds. The only delay is waiting on the agent manager and the scheduled replication.

Note: if there are multiple new/in progress task documents for the same server, the scan agent will always pick the newest Task document to run on, which is the first displayed in this (unsorted) view. So make sure that you only create a second task document AFTER the server completed its first task.

Ideally, use the ‘Scheduled On Domino’ option for all scan tasks to perform. Domino servers agents process data much faster than client-based agents. However, in certain cases you might want to run a task manually on the client. You can do so by using the ‘Manual On Client’ option in the navigator .

You can always re-run this step. The agent will simply add new Notes databases when they are found.

If you delete all NDDM content you can run this task also to start from scratch.

Make sure you improve the NDDM exclusion list and delete newly excluded files from NDDM simply by deleting the Notes db records in NDDM.

Scanning - User activity

Scanning – User activity. When the Notes database import – conducted in the previous step – is ready, it is time to carry out the Notes database user activity scan. In this scan, the excluded Domino servers and Admin user names are skipped, thus not reported and not used in the analysis phase of the scan.

You want to know the real end users activity. Domino server and Administrators user activity is irrelevant

This manual will assist you to carry out the scan multiple times until only real end users remain. The separation of real end users from servers or system users is crucial for determining if a Notes database is still (actively) used in your organization.

As mentioned before, also the user activity scan should preferably be performed by the scheduled server agent.

Press the menu “Analyze Databases > Scheduled On Domino > User Activity > Servers” to display the task screen.

Select “Analyze User activity” (default). A good approach is to start with 1 Domino server holding the majority of the Notes databases because we have to extend the list “Users and servers to exclude from the user activity scan”.

Besides collecting all Notes database user activity details per year, NDDM will also collect all user activity details per user. The ‘User Activity after Date’ box can be used to list all active users and their activity after the specified date. By default, the date is set one year back into the past. You can adjust this date if you like to.

NDDM will also collect the top x users in this time period. These 5 (for example) most active users can be used to communicate with, using the NDDM email tool (explained later on in this guide). You may change the top x number users if you like.

When the date and/or top x users fields are blank (or 0), these settings are omitted during the scan. All activity is then included in the activity per user and the top x active users.

Press the button “Initiate task(s)”. The scheduled scan tasks can be seen in this view:

When the scan is completed open view ‘Database Info’:

Scroll to the right and sort the column ‘Last Read By’.  Zip through the content and identify the first non real end user name (for example a Domino server, Admin, agent signer or Developer name).

Simply open the Notes database scan document and press this green marked link. A pop-up will appear where you can select the non end user name(s) to add to the exclude list.

The user name(s) will be added to the exclude list of NDDM.

Carry out this exclude task for all non end user names found in the user activity scan in the column ‘Last Read By’.

Do the same with the column ‘Last Write By’. Go through the content and identify Domino server names, Admin names, agent signer names and Developer names in order to find all names that are not the real end users.

At this stage you have excluded all non end users for the first Domino server. Now you must do a new server based user activity scan for the same Domino server. There is a big chance that new non end users will pop up in the columns ‘Last Read By’ and ‘Last Write By’. Exclude these names now and redo the user activity scan a few times until the 2 columns ‘Last Read/Write By’ only report real end users.

When the first Domino server only reports end users and all non end users are excluded, you can start scanning the other Domino servers for user activity. It is likely that you will find a few more non end users which you must exclude. When you exclude more names, you should do a rescan of the user activity on the Domino servers where non end users where found. After a few new user activity scan operations, only real end users should be listed in the columns ‘Last Read/Write By’. Once again:

You want to know the real end users activity. Domino server and Administrators user activity is irrelevant

One remark on the user activity scan: “na” (not available) can indicate that – although user activity recording is enabled – there are no user activity entries, or that all user activity is designated to users that are excluded. In the latter case, it can be concluded that the Notes database is not used by real end users.

These are the possible scenarios regarding User Activity scanning:

Scanning Notes database user activity with the Notes client and exclude all non end users will take a day max.

It is crucial the user activity scan does not show non end user names. You may improve the results later in the scan process

Scanning - Notes database content

Scanning – Notes database content.

Normally the Notes database content scan is done after the user activity scan. The Notes database content is executed by the Domino servers in parallel, because this task will process a lot of Notes data.

Instruct the Domino servers to carry out the scan and sit back for the results to appear in the central NDDM Notes database.

You want to discover the dates when the Notes database content was last modified

You may select one, multiple or all Domino servers.

Do not enable Deep Scan Doclinks yet. We will do this later on.

Wait until the view “Scheduled Scan Tasks\All” shows that all servers are ready with the content scan.

A few important remarks on the Notes database content scan:

  • In the content scan, the Users/Servers exclude list is NOT applied, because it is very interesting who has last modified the content; a Domino server, a signer ID or a real person. The exclude list is only used in the user activity scan.

A Domino server will run a Notes database content scan task in a few hours or a few days, depending on the database size and number of documents. You must wait for the scheduled replication. The Domino servers will run this task in parallel, not sequentially.

A sample Notes database content scan result:

The Last Doc Created/Modified (By) data of the scan is very important to determine what to do with the Notes database in the step ‘target analysis’, which is explained further below.

At a later moment you may re-scan all or selected Notes databases to update the scan details, using the options in the left menu.

For the few Notes databases that encountered problems during the Domino server based scan, you can apply a manual scan. You can find these Notes databases by – for instance – checking the ‘#Forms Used’ column:

Before you manually scan these Notes databases, make sure to enable Full Access Administration in the Domino Admin client.

Now select these Notes databases and click on ’02. Analyze Databases\Manual On Client’.

Scanning - Notes database content scanning issues

Scanning – Notes database content scanning issues.

The Domino server based scanning agent runs under a same Notes ID that was used to sign the NDDM. Its possible that this ID does not have access to the complete content of some Notes databases. This sometimes happens when – for instance – an ACL Role is used in reader fields on the Notes document.

When the agent was unable to scan all content, the Notes database is highlighted in red in the view. For example:

The form shows the number of documents that could not be scanned (marked with a green square in the image below).

To fix this, make sure the scanning signer ID has all the roles in the Notes database ACL. If this does not fix the issue, the problem may be caused by something else. A Domino administrator needs to step in to implement a fix resulting in a complete scan of this particular Notes database. However, if the scan target for this particular database is already beyond doubt, a complete scan for this database is not needed.

View ‘Database Read Protected’ displays all Notes databases where the scan has discovered protected Notes documents.

To get round the protected Notes documents issue, run a manual content scan of these databases with the Full Access Administration option in the Notes admin client enabled. By doing this, you can access most protected documents, resulting in a much better scan result. The image below displays the steps to be taken with regards to scanning read-protected documents.

NDDM has these 2 views to report Notes databases where the user activity or the content scan has not been completed

Make sure these 2 views are empty, then all Notes databases are scanned properly.

Scanning - Logging of scan errors

Scanning – Logging of scan errors

On the bottom of each NDDM Database Info document, a scan log is displayed.

If an error occurs during a scan, this error is listed in this Analysis Log field:

For the User Activity scan, additional warnings and info is logged as well:

  • Warning: User Activity recording not enabled for this database
  • Info: User Activity recording is enabled for this database, but no activity was found

 

In the Database Info\Errors view, documents are displayed that that have a scan error.

In case of scheduled tasks, additional logging is displayed on the task document itself. This logging will also list errors that can not directly be traced back to a specific database.

The Scheduled Scan Tasks\All view displays the number of errors found during the scheduled scan. These do not include the Warning and Info messages mentioned above.

Additional (fatal) errors are logged in the Agent Log view. These errors mostly correspond to the error on the Database Info and/or the Task form, but sometimes this is not the case.

This logging capacity in NDDM makes it a lot easier to track down the cause for any error. Note, however, that in the compiled version, the error does not display the correct line number.

Target Analysis

Now the scan is ready. You have collected a huge amount of details on all Notes databases which now have to be analyzed.

In this phase, NDDM will try to classify all Notes databases into one of these 3 main categories:

  • Replace – Notes database is actively in use
  • Archive – Notes database is only read
  • Delete – Notes database is not used at all

Lialis NDDM has a set of Target calculation rules that will assist you to calculate the Targets automatically.

For each Notes database the content scan and the user activity scan are reviewed by above listed target definitions. NDDM will calculate in which group (Replace, Archive or Delete) the particular Notes database fits.

The Targets setup we have supplied in your NDDM version may differ from the examples we give in this guide. The Targets setup we supply are based on the latest knowledge we have gained in our projects.

Lialis will always guide clients in the target calculation phase because of its complexity and importance

First you have to decide the target cut-off date; for example 1 or 2 years in the past.

In below Diagram we have simplified the cut-off date approach we use in NDDM.

This way you can adjust the cut-off date easily on all targets

Important – make sure you restore task 320 to 15 July 1970 !!!!!!!

The problem is that there are always Notes databases that do not fit nicely in one of the 3 categories (Replace, Archive or Delete). This is the main reason why there are more than 3 target calculation documents provided in NDDM by Lialis.

Lets look at the Replace target definition document in more detail.

Target number is used later on in the process when we worry about Notes database replicas on multiple Domino servers.

Target short can be Replace, Archive or Delete. You may rename these if you prefer.

Target description has a very detailed naming of this particular target.

Availability it is possible to enable 3 options:

The blue marked criteria are applied to the Notes database content scan results.
The green/yellow marked criteria are applied to the Notes database user activity scan results.

  • No Documents – when the Notes database has 0 documents
  • No Activity – when the user activity is “na” (means there are no real users found after applying the exclude list on the user activity)
  • Not scanned – when the user activity is not enabled in the Notes database

In the following fields you can set if this target is applicable. For example if the last document creation date is after a certain date.

Last doc created, Condition: Created after Date: 02-03-2020
Last doc modified, Condition: Modified after, Date: 02-03-2020
Last read date, Condition: Read after, Date: 02-03-2020
Last write date, Condition: Written after, Date: 02-03-2020
Reads, Condition: Larger, Number: 10
Writes, Condition: Larger, Number: 10

All criteria must apply to the particular Notes database scan results before the target is applied.

The target calculation may be carried out by the Domino server or by the Notes client. Its better to let the Domino server carry out this task because the Domino server will do it much faster compared with the Notes client.

In the view “Database Info” press the button Analyze Targets > All docs (scheduled).

A new server task will be listed, wait for the server to carry it out.

With the targets supplied, we try to achieve that all Notes databases are targeted. However, this might not be always the case.

In the rare case that a target cannot be calculated, the below columns are empty in the main view Database Info.

On the Notes document you can follow the target calculation decisions made by the system. This will help you understand the target calculation and it will help you finetune the target calculation.

Lialis support is always included to assist you in the target calculation and fine-tuning

If a Notes database is replicated across multiple Domino servers, NDDM will calculate which Notes database replica is used the most, based on the available usage data. This particular replica will then be assigned the Winner role. The calculation mechanism is not very complex.  The hub server icon (see image below) indicates that this particular Notes replica is the winner database. If a Notes database is not replicating, it will always get this winner role.

When all Notes databases with the winner role are migrated, or closed, or otherwise dealt with, you can be sure that all Notes databases in the whole environment are migrated and the all Domino servers can be decommissioned.

NDDM supplies 3 views to display only the Delete, Archive or Replace winners databases

It is recommended to use these 3 winners views to carry out batch ‘ACL Close’ operations or to send out emails with the NDDM survey tool for example.

A good way to study and review the targets is to export the NDDM content to Excel (client-based, selected documents) or CSV (server-based, all documents in view) as illustrated below.

In Excel it is easy to review the target calculations made by NDDM, by having a close look at the columns that have the target definitions. Simply make the deletions in the Excel columns in the same manner as defined in the Target settings document and you will understand how NDDM does the target calculations for you.

Note that the columns we use in the target calculation are colored in Excel.

Target Analysis - Notes database replicas on multiple Domino servers

A Notes database can have replicas on multiple Domino servers. Notes content is replicated between replicas, but Notes user activity is not replicated. This means that – with respect to the example of the Sales development database displayed below – 6 replicas of the same Notes database will be targeted differently on each Domino servers: 1 replica is targeted with Delete, 4 databases are targeted with Archive, and 1 database is targeted with Replace.

This real live situation happens regularly, because Notes content is often modified on only one or maybe just a few of the many replicas. In this example, the so called ‘winner target’ will become ‘Replace’ because this target overrules the lower targets ‘Delete’ and ‘Archive’.

You might have wondered why the targets have a number. Well, this number is used to calculate the master winner target. In above example, 1 Notes database gained the target 2570 Delete , 4 Notes databases got the target 3560 ‘Archive’,  and 1 database got the target 4590 ‘Replace’. The replica with the highest target number is assigned the winner status, which in this example is 4590.

Note that the numbers of the targets you received from Lialis may differ from the the numbers being used in this manual.

In the project execution, the Notes databases with the winner targets will be dealt with. The Notes database from this example will have to be replaced. When all winner Notes databases are either deleted, migrated/replaced or archived the project is completed.

In future reporting, only the winner Notes databases should be used and reported, because they stand for the whole Notes database collection.

Scanning - Notes databases design string scan

NDDM offers a way to find certain Notes database design strings. In this example we search for the design strings “@MailSend” and “.Send” to find out which Notes databases are sending out emails with for example workflow links that point to documents in other databases. Listing these Notes databases is important if you plan to do a Notes email migration first, since the database workflow will likely no longer be functioning.

Finding out these details only matter for the replace winner Notes databases. Hence first go to the view Replace winners.

Select all Notes databases in this view and carry out the scan instruction as displayed below, to find the design strings “@MailSend” and “.Send”.

The scan will be run in the Notes client background and will take a few minutes per Notes database.

An example of the found strings:

If a substring (case insensitive) is found, the complete line of code is returned as a result.

Another way to find out if a database is sending mail, comes from the content scan: If documents are found containing a SendTo and/or CopyTo field, the addresses in these fields are listed on the Database Info document. Note that this listing is up to a max number of characters. The goal is to get an impression of how important the mail functionality is for this application, rather than obtaining a complete list of addresses.

When you combine all this information, you get a relatively good insight in the mail functionality and whether it is still in use, for example:

The Notes database holds memo forms with people in the SendTo field:

The memo form has been used recently:

The Notes database holds design elements capable to send out workflow emails.

The ‘Database Design strings found’ view displays a selection of the Notes winner databases where the design strings (.Send & @MailSend) were found. Also the number of names found in SendTo and CopyTo fields is displayed in this view:

Note: only if you ran the ‘Scan design on keywords’ on a database, and only if this scan returned results, the database info document will be visible in this view.

Scanning - Deep Notes Document link scan

NDDM offers a deep Notes document link scan. Normally, you would only run this on Notes databases with the target Replace HUB.

Go to the ‘Replace winners’ view, select all Notes databases and press the menu option ‘Selected Databases’ highlighted in the picture below:

A server-scheduled task will now scan all document links found in each document in all databases. Each link will be tested whether it is a dead link or if it is pointing to an existing target. Note that for each server involved in this scan, a separate Task document is created:

When the scan is completed:

A result of the Deep Notes document link scan is displayed in the image below

Scanning - Reader and Author fields details

NDDM offers a readers and authors field scan. Normally this scan is only carried out for the Notes databases with the target Replace.

This scan can only run on the Notes client. Full Access administration privileges must be enabled to make sure that the agent has access to Notes documents that are protected with readers fields.

Go to the ‘Replace winners’ view, select all Notes databases and press the action ‘Scan Readers/Authors fields selected docs’ highlighted in the picture below:

An example of the results is displayed below. Note that the names displayed per field, is a collection of all the names that were found on all documents created with the specific form.

Export to Excel

With NDDM its easy to export all content to Excel as illustrated below. Simply select all documents and choose:

  • Selected docs (Client-based) – will open an Excel workbook – which should be installed on the client machine – and populate it on the fly.
  • All docs (scheduled, CSV) – will generate a CSV export file containing all database info documents from the current view. This process is much faster than the client-based export, and is preferred when exporting a large amount of documents. You can find the exported CSV in the CSV Exports view. Detach this view and then import it in Excel.

In Excel, it is easy to review the target calculations made by NDDM, by having a close look at the columns used by the target definitions.

The Excel export provides additional information that is not displayed in the NDDM Notes views. For example, a listing of the design forms that the Notes database contains. Sorting on the forms column will give a great insight in Notes databases with a similar design. Notes databases that contain forms with the same name indicate that chances are high that these databases have a similar design, and thus may be grouped together, even if the template names are different.

Note that the CSV Export is done by scheduled agent called EXPORTONSERVER, that should be allowed to perform restricted operations as described in section ‘Scheduled Agents’

Batch-wise change Notes database access

NDDM supplies great Notes database ACL adjustment functions that can be applied bidirectionally to multiple Notes databases in one go. It is easy to close the access for regular users for all Notes databases that have been targeted to 1400 Delete. If needed, this can be undone with one mouse click.

First, configure the ACL lists. The “Edit ACL Lists” function allows you to configure ACL entries to be added when the ACL is adjusted by NDDM. For example, always add the servers and admin groups.

The entries listed under “Unchanged ACL entries” are not updated during the batch process where NDDM is changing ACL’s on multiple databases. Make sure to add the standard ACL Manager groups, server names and administrators to this list. Also include the members of groups that you add to the ACL. When a Notes database is ‘closed’, keeping these entries in tact ensures proper replication between Domino servers and Admin access later on.

 

 

Change the access with NDDM on the main Notes database replica and let the replication do its work to the other replicas.

In the example below, the Admin is going to put the selected Notes databases with the target 2570 Delete to read only.

Its a good practice to set Notes databases with the target “2570 Delete” to read only, and give users a few weeks to react as they are not able to modify the content in Notes. Then you know that the Delete classification should be adjusted.

The ‘Database Status’ view gives details on ACL closure status.

The NDDM Notes form displays details on all ACL changes made with NDDM.

Changing back ACL changes made with NDDM is easy using the appropriate action menu:

Reverting access is logged as well.

Batch-wise send out mailings to end users for information

When the targets are applied accurately, it is time to reach out to the recent users of the Notes database to get confirmation of the calculated target.

NDDM has a way to send emails in batch, based on predefined templates and specific data from your scan that can be used in your project.

To send a mailing, click in the menu on ‘Mailings’.

We have supplied mailing examples:

In this example, the ‘Send to’ field has the option ‘Most active users’ selected. This means the email will be sent to the following users:

Its very practical to communicate with the recent top x users instead of all unique users of which some may not even work within the company anymore.

The ‘Add link to Database Info document’ checkbox will add a link to the NDDM Database Info document at the bottom of the email. Note that recipients must have at least Reader access to be able to open the document. You can enable this by setting the Default access of NDDM to Reader.

The email displayed above can for example be sent to all Notes databases with the target Archive. Form the view ‘Archive hubs’, select the Notes databases you want to use for your mailing. Then press the ‘Send mailing’ action to choose the email template.

Email documents are listed in a ‘Send Queue’ which can be accessed this way:

A scheduled agent called ‘ProcessMailingQueue’ will pick up and send these emails. This agent needs some configuration if you are going to use the NDDM mailing features. To configure the agent, open NDDM in the Notes designer and open this agent:

Set the Domino server which will run this agent to send out the emails.

Determine which user will be the sender of the email. Set this username here and save the agent under this user’s Notes ID:

All Sent message are saved in NDDM. You can access them in the Mailings\Sent view.

A red cross icon is displayed when an error has occurred when the message was sent. At the bottom of the mail you can see the reason for this error:

The Database Info document is updated with the last Mailing History:

NDDM is mainly used in environments where the email has already been migrated, for example to Outlook. Getting this NDDM mailing feature to work smoothly in hybrid email domains may be challenging. But no worries, Lialis will assist you in setting this up.

Fix missing Notes database ACL roles

Another function of NDDM is the ACL role scanner. This scanner reports the roles that the person, current pressing the ‘Get Role List’ action, is missing in certain Notes databases.

This feature is very useful to fix issues related to a server-based scan showing incomplete scan results, due to Notes document readers limitations.

Open view “Database Roles”. Select all documents in this view, or only select the Notes database you are interested in. Then press the action “Get Role List”

The agent will report the roles that are specified in the ACL, and which of these roles the current user (Administrator) is missing.

When the agent has finished, sort the column “Missing roles for Current User”. Select the Notes databases where the Admin is missing ACL roles and press the ‘Set Manager’ action in the left navigator. This action will add the Admin to the Notes database ACLs and will assign all roles to this user.

When you then rescan these Notes databases, the column “Missing roles for Current User” will show no roles. This means the Admin has all roles assigned.

The next step is to rescan the ‘red marked’ Notes databases where the Domino server failed to analyze to all documents due to reader security. In general, scanning with the Notes client with Full Access Administrator enabled, and with all roles assigned, will produce a complete scan result.

Import status values from excel into NDDM

In most projects we carry out for our clients, the NDDM generated Excel file is used as a project master file in which the status of each Notes database is tracked carefully by the project team. In some occasions, it is useful to import the Excel master file status into the NDDM field named ‘Target’. For this purpose we supply a way to import these targets into NDDM.

All you need is to create an Excel file with 4 columns. The Domino server name in Column A, the file path of the Notes database in Column B, the title in Column C and the target you wish to import in column D, for example:

Then import the Target values in NDDM as illustrated below:

The imported targets will then show up in the Status column in the NDDM view “Database Status”.

Scanning - Deep Notes Database ACL and group permissions scan

This scan will report the users and their access level to the Notes database. If groups are found in the Notes database ACL, the members of these groups will be collected from the Domino Directory.

Just like the database content scan, the ACL scan can be done manual on the client, or server-based via a scheduled agent. For example, you can select the Notes databases you want to scan and press Actions/02. Analyze Databases/Scheduled On Domino/Content –> Selected Databases.

Select the ‘Scan ACL’ check box and then press ‘Initialize Task(s).

The task is created for the NDDM agent to pick up.

If you don’t want to wait for the agent, you can also scan the selected databases manually.

A result example is displayed in the image below. Note that in this case, groups contained the Common Names of users. Normally, the abbreviated name is logged.

When a user name is found in multiple groups with different access, the user name is registered to the ACL level that corresponds to the ‘actual access’ of the user.

Doing a proper Domino scan is challenging. Lialis will support the scan from begin to end to ensure a perfect result.

Please contact us here if you are interested in NDDM commercials or a demonstration.

Thank you for your interest.