Thoughts on Notes & Domino 8.5.3

October 5 2011

By now most of my readers have read the deluge of IBM Lotus Notes & Domino 8.5.3 news. For those that have not, here is a bit of a recap:

Ed Brill:

Introducing IBM XWork Server

Image:Introducing IBM XWork Server

IBM Lotus Notes/Domino 8.5.3 now available, including entitlement to IBM Connections Files and Profiles
New license terms in Notes/Domino 8.5.3, including changes to Domino Express
Some great new resources for Notes/Domino 8.5.3

Niklas covers My Favorite Domino 8.5.3 XPages Features very well.

My thoughts:


8.5.3 is the release you want to get on if you are doing XPages development. If you have done work in 8.5.1 and 8.5.2, yes, you will feel some pain getting your existing apps there. But 8.5.3 is going to become the foundation of all the roll up of features that we have seen on and on the blogs. When the extension library and mobile controls get implemented in the product vs. a download from, 8.5.3 is going to be the platform you need to be on. I also feel like many of the fixes and features added to XPages in 8.5.3 are more customer and partner driven vs. IBM driven. 8.5.2 was feature set before the broad expansion of XPages really kicked in. IBM and the early adopters set the 8.5.2 feature list for the most part. 8.5.3 is a combination of those folks plus the second and third wave of XPages developers. SPR and Feature Requests came in from a larger audience. That is a good thing.


This is the first release of Notes with the Symphony 3.X client built in. No more overlay installer which can cause issues if you have both the stand-alone version and the integrated versions of Symphony installed. I have also found the following things work perfectly, which always had issues with 8.5.2:

1. Using both UNO and LotusScript API's in the same Notes session does not cause Symphony & Notes to crash.
2. Using UNO API with the stand-alone version and the LotusScript API with the integrated works perfectly side by side. You still have to install the Notes 8.5.3 client and then the stand-alone version for this to work.

There is still a problem that once you kick off the UNO API's the LotusScript API's fail, so need to get a PMR in on that.

I am also finding that the initial start-up time and initial loading of the Symphony LotusScript API to be much quicker than ever before. My custom Expeditor plug-ins that integrate Notes with Symphony also seem to be loading faster and are much smoother.

Final Thought:

One of the things the yellowverse complains about is that the seams between Notes and Expeditor are very visible. Add in Sametime, Symphony, Connections, and Quickr integration points, and things seem to felt like they were held together with duct tape. 8.5.3 feels like everything was built together. The seams are gone (or very well hidden). This release feels faster and better integrated then ever before. New features in PIM and XPages make this a desirable release on the client. 8.5.3 begins the foundation that is needed for 8.5.4 and the new social mail client to be revealed at Lotusphere 2012. I expect there to be some official add-ons from IBM that will enhance 8.5.3 ... but more on that as information is available. Nice work IBM. 8.5.3 seems like a solid and polished release.

4 Responses to “Thoughts on Notes & Domino 8.5.3”

  1. 1) Werner Motzet says:


  2. 2) Patrick Kwinten says:

    I am told there will be no 8.5.4?

  3. 3) John D Head says:

    not what Ed said at MWLUG ... they might call it 8.5.3 feature pack but it's really 8.5.4

  4. 4) Chris Whisonant says:

    It's being referred to as 8.5.4 here: { Link }


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