Tuesday, January 19, 2021

SnTT - Hear Ye, Hear Ye, Something new at Openntf for ADMINS

Show n Tell Tuesday

That's right, I resurrected Show n Tell Tuesday for this post because I can, it's my blog, and why wait for Thursday anyway?

A few months ago, my friend Roberto had the luck to join the Openntf Board. 

If you don't know what Openntf is, click on the link and check it out. NOW! 

The TL;DR is Openntf is THE place to go when you need a template for an HCL Domino or Notes application to help your company. It is also where you can go for tutorials on various development topics and all kinds of developer code snippets.

Admittedly, few admins ever add to the site, because, well, historically there is not much for admins there and often what we see/know is proprietary to our clients and companies. This has been my perspective for many years. However, a new world, a new time, and progress is being made, thanks to Roberto.

Openntf was not ignorant of the issue, many of my friends and fellow IBM Champions, and HCL Ambassadors, have worked hard over the years to make Openntf as useful as it is today by their incremental changes and awesome templates and code bits, even if I don't understand all of them. 

We have come a long way.

Maybe we just got older and complained more, maybe they finally realized without Admins there is no server running, or maybe we do bring some benefit. 

After all, as we rise like an HCL Phoenix from the ashes of the IBM years we are seeing new people ask questions and post requests, young and old, and they need guidance from us old, er, wizened people.

Roberto asked many of us what we would like to see as Admins in Openntf and I said I would like to see Lotusscripts, Formulas, and other code bits that help make our lives better, easier, and faster. 

I was worried that as some of us move along or retire or cross the Golden Firewall, we will lose knowledge and that would be pretty sad, given how many years of managing Notes and Domino networks we represent.

I am sure other admins also gave him input and I hope they will look into it further after reading this post or you reach out to Roberto with more ideas.

In December I was asked to test something on the Openntf website and that is what this news is about.


In addition to the existing benefits of the Openntf site, there is now a dedicated section for snippets of code, which is what EVERY admin needs. Here is a link to it: https://openntf.org/XSnippets.nsf/home.xsp

Now when you add a code snippet, the option to select the Language for it can be called "Admin Scripts".

There is a tag field so you can put whatever else you need in it to help your fellow admins find it when they need it.

I have posted 3 snippets which I use frequently, no doubt most of you will recognize the need for these as well.

  1. Create a Forwarding Address in a Person Doc based on Email Address
  2. Looking up and Converting a List of Notes Names into their Email Address
  3. Converting Regular Common Name Lists into Notes Hierarchical Names
The first one is a simple script to grab an existing email and edit it for another field. Helpful when updating domains or in merger situations. Edit it, select all, done. 

The second one is really good for your AAs or Marketing people who need to extract email addresses of employees or clients, and upload those into bulk email sending services like MailChimp or into Salesforce. I have set those users up so they never bother me again. Okay, I lose some billing time but honestly, who wants to look up a few hundred or thousand people's emails anyway? This takes seconds to do it.

The third, a similar request to the second one, is because I was receiving very long lists of names to create ACL groups and mail groups. Names should be listed properly in these groups and this script helps you out. Again, in seconds.

Could these snippets be coded better? 
Could they be used differently?
Will I be adding more over time?
Can any Admin, or Developer, use them?
Should you use these?

The answer to all these questions is YES!

I tried to explain the code and how to use it, so if I need to edit it or you have problems let me know and I will try to help you best I can.

Looking forward to seeing more snippets up there and that we can say 2021 is the year of the Admin.

Have things you need or like to see, let me know, I might have them and get them posted.