How to deploy widgets and/or plugins in your organization

Deploying widgets and/or plug-ins in your organization is very easy and there’s a number of options for doing it.

  1. Desktop policies
  2. Widget catalog via MyWidgets
  3. Drag’n’drop of widgets to the MyWidgets sidebar plug-in

Using a desktop policy is just a administration shorthand for using the widget catalog via MyWidgets.

The first thing you really should do, if not simply using publishing widgets created through the MyWidgets functionality, is to read up on and understand the Lotus Expeditor provisioning manifest syntax. The manifest is used to specify where the update site server is and which features and in which version to install. The manifest looks weird at first but it’s actaully easy enough. Unfortunately there isn’t a nice UI for creating these provisioning manifests but I head rumors in the Meet the Developers lab at Lotusphere that a UI is coming. Soon… 🙂

And now for the time and frustration saver…

Absolutely make sure that you put the widget catalog in the root of the Domino server to make sure it ends up in the root of the Notes client. If you do not do this and you specify a widget catalog in the preferences the Notes client wont apply updates to the widgets when new versions are available. This is a bug at least in Notes 8.5 GOLD.


PMR at Lotus Support

Just got a call from Lotus Support confirming that the issue mentioned previously with mail settings not being correctly applied is indeed a bug in the software. In short the bug implies that a mail setting that requires an agent to be enabled (e.g. the “Allow Notes to update To Do status and dates for incomplete entries” setting on the calendar profile) will not be correctly applied to user mail databases.

For the time being you can use the agent mentioned previously to work around the problem.

Force application of mail settings

As previously reported I think I’ve found a bug in how Domino applied mail settings to users mail databases – at least when the setting requires an agent to be enabled as well (the “Allow Notes to update To Do status and dates for incomplete entries” setting on the calendar profile). For those who want to read the previous posts the first one is here (“Loving policies – especially mail settings”) and the second one is here (Re: Loving policies – especially mail settings).

I finally got around to bringing the issue up before Lotus Support and as part of the support process I learned a new AdminP command:

Tell AdminP Process Mail Policy

The command will force AdminP to apply mail settings immediately. Nice. Some might know the command already but I sure didn’t.