Upgrading Lotus Domino R5 to R8.5.1

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Strongback Consulting

I’ve just recently completed a server upgrade for a customer where they had a single R5 server and were ready to upgrade. Yes, R5. That version has been out of maintenance now since September 2005. The upgrade was a success, but I’d like to throw out a gotcha or two.

In this case we added two new servers to the Domain, and used AdminP to move the mail users over to the new servers. The old server was just as dated as the Domino server was and it needed replacing also. We ran into errors moving mail users during the ‘Replace Mail File’ fields (step 5 of 13) in the AdminP process. We had already upgraded the design of the Domino directory and the the Administration Requests databases, and changed the ACL’s to make one of the cluster mates the administration server of both databases. Changing the administration requests database ACL back to have the original mail server as the administration server solved the problem and adminp mail move requests were able to complete normally again.

The change in database design was not an issue at all, and it is quite amazing that both are backwards compatible all the way to R5 (although officially, I think it goes all the way back to R4).

Other things to consider if you are upgrading from R5, is that the concept of moving a non-mail database, does not exist back then. You will need to notify users of the new replica location. In R7 you can simply move a database, and it will leave a pointer that will update client bookmarks. R5 does not have this luxury so prepare accordingly.

Also, its best to create replicas of the mail files first before you actually run the AdminP mail move process. This gives you an opportunity to ensure the latest ODS for the databases and to enable them for LZ1 compression and DAOS. Don’t forget to add to your new server config document “create_R85_databases”, otherwise, you will not be able to enable databases for DAOS.

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