ShowTable of Contents
IBM® Lotus® Notes® is the client-type application of the Notes/Domino® client-server model that functions as the main interface of the IBM Lotus Domino server. Mail is one of the major features of Lotus Notes; it's the most popular way to communicate within your corporation and with other companies via the Internet.
You can automatically add a personal signature to all the messages you send. You can also use an alternate signature if, for example, you have different signatures for internal and external correspondences.
To set up your signature:
1. Click in the More button and select Preferences (see figure 1).
Figure 1. More --- Preferences
2. Click the Mail tab and then the Signature subtab (see figure 2).
Figure 2. Signature subtab
3. Figure 3 illustrates the remaining steps to set up your signature, which are explained below.
Figure 3. Steps to set up signature
A. Automatically append a signature to the bottom of my outgoing mail messages.
You must enable this option in order for Lotus Notes to automatically add the signature when you create a new message.
B. Rich Text.
This option lets you use rich text features such as graphics and attachments. Some mail clients do not support this format, but the majority of clients do.
C. Plain Text.
This option lets you use only plain text and does not support images or attachments, which likely also prevents your messages from being blocked by an anti-spam system. All mail clients should support this format.
D. HTML or Image File.
This option lets you use HTML or an image file as your signature. It must be a TXT(.txt), HTML(.htm or .html), JPEG (.jpg), bitmap(.bmp), or GIF(.gif) file. The file can exist anywhere on your computer, but you might want to store it in your Notes Data folder for convenience.
E. Append My vCard.
Click the Append My vCard button, change any of the information in the fields, if needed, and click Append vCard to Signature. To move the vCard file to a location other than following your signature, cut and paste it to the new location.
You should select only one of the options: Rich Text, Plain Text or HTML or Image File.
F. Rich Text(T,field).
If you selected the Rich Text option, you must add your signature with the options shown in figures 4 and 5, to format it properly, and you can also add images and attachments.
Figure 4. Rich Text options
Figure 5. Rich Text options
G. Plain Text(field).
If you selected the Plain Text option, you must add your signature in simple text only (see figure 6).
Figure 6. Example Plain Text signature
H. HTML or Image File(path).
If you selected the HTML or Image File option, you must select your TXT(.txt), HTML(.htm or .html), JPEG (.jpg), bitmap(.bmp), or GIF(.gif) file. To do that, just click the Browse button and select the appropriate file.
4. After you are done with the signature and all the corresponding options, click OK. Now when you create a new message you should see your newly configured signature in the body of the message as shown in figure 7.
Figure 7. Signature in body of message
You can change your signature at any time by repeating these steps, specifying new options. You can remove the signature by clearing the “Automatically append a signature to the bottom of my outgoing mail messages” option and can also change the information in your vCard, replacing the existing version with an updated one.
You can use an alternate signature if, for example, you have a different signature for internal and external mail. Add the signature that you use more frequently to your preferences as described, so it's automatically added to all emails you send.
Save your alternate signature file to your computer (it must be a TXT, HTML, JPEG, bitmap, or GIF file). The file can exist anywhere on your computer, but you might want to store it in your Notes Data folder for convenience.
Use a plain text file if you send messages to users of mail programs that display only text.
When you want to use your alternate signature, follow these steps:
- When you start a new email, the signature you specified in Mail Preferences automatically displays. Delete that signature from the email message.
- Click Actions --- More --- Insert Signature.
- Select Import from File (Text/HTML/Image), select a file type, select your alternate signature file, and click Open. Click OK.
When addressing mail in Lotus Notes, you can type a name or address manually, or use the type-ahead feature.
You can address a message either by selecting recipient names from your contact list or a directory, or by typing names or addresses directly into a message. If you type names directly, Notes mail uses a type-ahead feature that completes names based on the first few letters you type.
1. To select a name or Internet address, click the To field link (see figure 8).
Figure 8. To field in a new message form
You should see a window similar that in figure 9.
Figure 9. Select Addresses window
Let's discuss the fields and buttons in this figure:
The Directory button contains any local contact lists you have specified, Domino directories on available Domino servers, and Internet address directories. For information on available Domino directories, see your system administrator. Local contact lists are called Contacts or Address Book (for example, Doe's Contacts). If you click this button, the directories should display (see figure 10.)
Figure 10. Directory button
B. Find names starting with
. This field helps you easily find your contact; just type the first few letters of the last name, and Notes will filter the last names starting with the letters you just typed.
C. Names list.
This is the list of names of your local contacts or the corporation contacts.
D. To button
. This adds the contact(s) you selected in the “Names list” as the To field. If you click this button, the name(s) selected will be added to this field. You should see the address as highlighted in red in figure 11.
E. cc button
. This button adds the contact(s) you selected in the “Names list” as the Cc field (carbon copy). If you click this button, the name(s) selected will be added to this field. You should see the address as highlighted in blue in figure 11.
F. bcc button.
This button adds the contact(s) you selected in the “Names list” as the Bcc field (blind carbon copy). If you click this button, the name(s) selected will be added to this field. You should see the address as highlighted in green in figure 11.
Figure 11. To, cc, and bcc buttons
. This button displays the details of the contact you selected from the Names list, if you click it, you should see the information of the contact as shown in figure 12.
Figure 12. Contact details
H. Add to Contacts.
Use this button to add contact(s) from the corporation directory to your local address book. This is helpful when you work remotely or without connection to your company.
I. View by.
You can select the type of view you wish to use to display your contact(s) in the “Names list”. The available options are highlighted in red in figure 13.
Figure 13. Options for View by
Use this button to remove a contact you added to one of the fields (“To”, Cc” or “Bcc”).
K. Remove all
. Use this button to remove all contacts from all fields.
After you select and add your contact(s), click OK. Your contacts should display as shown in figure 14.
Figure 14. Contacts
Lotus Notes looks up names in your contact list first, then in the Domino directory on your home server. You can customize type-ahead to look in your contact list only, or you can disable type-ahead altogether:
- Select File --- Locations --- Manage Locations.
- Select the location you are using, click Edit below the locations list, and click Mail.
- In the Recipient name type-ahead field, select one of these:
- Local Only, to look for names in your local contact list only.
- Local then Server, to look first in your local contact list, then on your home server.
- Disabled, to turn off type-ahead.
Note that Mail file location must be set to Local, for the Recipient name type-ahead field to appear.
4. If you selected Local Only or Local then Server, select one of the following in the Activate recipient name type-ahead field:
- On Each Character, to search after each character you type.
- On Delimiter, to search only after you type a delimiter such as a comma or the Enter key.
5. Click Save & Close.
To have Notes do a names lookup for you, start typing the name of the person to whom you want to send a message and press the F9 key.
You can add new contact entries by creating a new entry or by adding the sender of a mail document (such as a message or an invitation) to your contacts.
1. To add a new contact, click the Open button and select Contacts (see figure 15).
Figure 15. Open --- Contacts
2. You should see a window like that in figure 16. Click the New button.
Figure 16. New button
The window in figure 17 displays.Figure 17. New Contact window
3. You can fill out all the fields you wish; if you need more information about any field, check the Notes Help by pressing the F1 key. The required fields to add a contact are as follows:
Contact Name. In this field, type the first name and last name or the full name.
E-mail. Click on this link to add an email address; you should see the window in figure 18.
a) In the Label field, set the label of the address; select an existing one in the Notes directory or you can type your own.Figure 18. E-mail Addresses window
b) If you know that one of your contacts uses a mail system other than Lotus Notes, then Click the Mail Address Assistant icon. Information about other mail systems helps to ensure that your message reaches its destination.
c) In the E-mail field, type the address you wish for the contact. Click OK.
4. When you are done filling out all the fields you wish to have for your contact, click the “Save and Close” button, after which you should see the contact you just registered in the list (see figure 19).
Figure 19. Newly registered contact in list
You can also create user groups if you wish to send messages to multiple recipients:
1. Click the down arrow within the New button and select “Group”; the window in figure 20 displays.
Figure 20. New Group window
Group Name. Type the name of the group you wish to add; it must a name that does not exist in other directories.Figure 21. Select Names window
Description. If desired, you can type a description for this user group (preferably something that reminds you what the group is used for).
Members. Click on this link to choose the users you will add; you should see a window like that in figure 21. Select the contacts the same way we did in the beginning of this section (Select contact(s)). If you need any additional help, press the F1 key to access the Notes help.
2. After you are done selecting the contacts, click OK, and then click Save and Close.
Your user group is now saved, and you can see it in the list in the Groups view (see figure 22).
Figure 22. Groups view
To use a user group, select it the same the way you select any contact (see figure 23).
Figure 23. Select a user group
To edit the information from a contact or user group, just go to Contacts, find the contact or group you wish edit, double-click it and then click the Edit button. After changing the information, click the Save and Close button.
To delete a contact or user group, go to Contacts, find the contact or group you wish to delete, select it and then press the Delete key.
You can use mail rules to act automatically on new messages you receive that meet certain conditions. For example, you could create a rule that checks for messages from a certain sender or that contain a certain subject and automatically move the messages to a certain folder, send copies of the messages to someone, or delete unwanted messages before you ever see them in your Inbox.
The mail rules you create are stored in the Rules folder in your mail application. You can go there to add new rules as well as work on the ones you've already created. For example, you can edit rules, change their order so that one rule has priority over another, turn them off when you don't want to use them, or delete them entirely.
To create a rule:
1. In the navigation pane of your mail, select Tools --- Rules (see figure 24), or click More and select Mail Rules (figure 25).
Figure 24. Tools --- Rules
Figure 25. More --- Mail Rules
2. Click New Rule (see figure 26).
Figure 26. New Rule button
3. In the New Rule window, under Specify Conditions (see figure 27):
a) Select a message part to check (such as sender or subject)Figure 27. Specify Conditions of New Rule window
b) Select a state (such as contains or is).
c) Enter the criteria to check for (such as the name of a certain person or a certain word).
NOTE: Do not use quotation marks for the criteria you enter.
For example, you could select sender, and contains, and then type Alice, to filter all messages sent to you by Alice French, Alice Stearns, and anyone else named Alice. Or you could select size (in bytes) and is greater than, and then type 2000, to filter all messages sent to you that are greater than 2000 bytes.
Note that the contains condition works on partial words and is not case sensitive. For example, you could select sender and contains, and then type Al or al, to filter all messages sent to you by anyone named Al, Alice, Alex, or Alicia.
Also, the all documents condition lets you perform an action on all messages that arrive in your mail while the rule is enabled. For example, you might select all documents and specify sending a copy to an alternate email address while you are out of the office.
4. Click Add. This adds the condition you just created to the section, “When mail messages arrive that meet these conditions:”
5. Perform any of the following tasks described in table 1.
Table 1. Rule tasks
6. Under the Specify Actions section, select an action and specify the action details (such as a target folder), if necessary (see figure 28).
Figure 28. Specify Actions section of New Rule window
Depending on which action you choose for the rule, different options will be available. If you decide to move the message to a folder, you will have the option to choose a folder; if you decide to send a copy to someone, you will have the option to enter an address and choose to send the full message or headers only. You can see the available actions and their descriptions in table 2.
Table 2. Available actions
7. Click Add Action, and perform any of the tasks in table 3.
Table 3. Add Action tasks
8. Click OK, to finish.
Note that the rule is enabled by default.
Mail rules examples
Let's now look at some practical examples of mail rules.
The rule shown in figure 29 automatically changes the importance of all messages from Jane Doe to High (and they display an exclamation point in the Inbox to catch your attention).
Figure 29. Example 1 rule
. The rule shown in figure 30 automatically rejects all messages that contain the words “lottery prize” in the body or in the subject. A similar rule to this could be configured to avoid certain types of spam or scams.
Figure 30. Example 2 rule
. The rule in figure 31 automatically moves all messages that have the word "status" in the Subject from the Inbox to the Status Reports folder, unless the subject also has the word "sales" or "project" in the subject (which are exceptions). Similar rules can be created to organize and sort your messages for you automatically.
Figure 31. Example 3 rule
Rule condition items correspond to fields in the document properties of a mail message. Many of the items, such as Subject, have the same name as the corresponding field. Table 4 lists items whose names are different from the fields to which they correspond.
Table 4. Items and fields
When you delete messages, Lotus Notes places them in the Trash folder in your mail application. Deleted messages stay in the Trash folder for the time specified on the Basics page of your mail preferences (48 hours by default; see the bottom of figure 32) or until you explicitly delete them from the Trash folder. This staged deletion gives you a chance to retrieve messages if you make a mistake.
Figure 32. Delete documents in my trash folder after 48 hours
Note that, if you select Actions --- More --- Preferences, and don't see “Delete documents in my Trash folder after” on the Basics page, your organization may have modified the design of your mail application, and you may need to manage your Trash folder through the preference. Ask your administrator for assistance.
Deleting a document
1. In any mail folder or view except Trash, select one or more messages to delete and press the Delete key.
2. You can also delete a message using Edit --- Delete, right-clicking and selecting Delete, clicking the Trash icon
above the message list, or by dragging the selected document(s) to the Trash folder.
Figure 33 illustrates the procedure of deleting a selected message using a mouse right-click and then selecting Delete. Notice that on the right-hand side of the pop-up menu, the shortcut “Del” is shown to perform the same action, which is pressing the Delete key on the keyboard.
Figure 33. Right-click --- Delete
Once the selected message is deleted, it is removed from the Inbox and placed in the Trash view (see figure 34).
Figure 34. Trash view
In some databases, deleting a document permanently removes it from the database, but in a Notes mail file database, deleting a document moves it into a Trash folder and stores it in a state of "soft deletion."
To restore a message from the Trash folder, open the Trash folder, select the deleted message(s) you would like to restore, and then click Restore (see figure 35).
Figure 35. Restore from trash
If you want to restore all messages in your Trash folder, you can simply click the Restore All button above the message list.
Emptying the Trash
To empty the Trash folder, open the folder, and click Empty Trash, to remove the documents permanently from the Trash view. Figure 36 illustrates the steps mentioned earlier; once you click Empty Trash, you are prompted to confirm the exclusion.
Be aware that, once the documents are removed from the Trash, they are permanently excluded and cannot be retrieved.
Figure 36. Empty the Trash folder
You can organize your messages or documents into folders. The Folders view is found in the Navigation pane (see 37).
Figure 37. Folders view
1. To create a new folder, right-click on Folders and select the New folder option (see figure 38).
Figure 38. Folder --- New Folder
2. The Create Folder window displays (see figure 39). Type a name for the folder in the Folder name field and click OK.
Figure 39. Create Folder window
The newly created folder is saved, and you can see it in the Folders view (see figure 40).
Figure 40. Newly created folder
3. To add or move a message to a folder, just right-click the message and select the Move to Folder option. The Move to Folder window displays (see figure 41), in which you can select the appropriate destination folder and have the option to move or add a copy of the message or document to the destination folder chosen.
Figure 41. Move to Folder window
4. To see the message you just added/moved, click the folder, and it will show its contents.
5. You also have the option to rename or delete a folder. To do that, right-click on the folder and select the appropriate option (see figure 42).
Figure 42. Rename or delete folder
Out of Office
You can use the Out of Office (OOO) notification feature to send an automated reply to incoming messages while you're away. The automated reply informs people who send you mail while you're away that you're out and when you're returning.
Depending on your organization's server configuration, you have two different scenarios that affect the response time of your OOO notifications; specifically, your server can have the OOO feature configured as a service or an agent. Table 5 lists the major differences between the configurations.
Table 5. Comparison of Service and Agent configurations
The OOO service supports instant response to an incoming mail message. The response is generated by a router as part of the mail delivery of the incoming message. Whereas the agent is processed by the Agent Manager and is executed every six hours by default.
1. To enable the OOO feature, click More and select Out of Office (see figure 43).
Figure 43. More --- Out of Office
The window shown in figure 44 displays, which includes these fields:
a) Leaving. Set the date when you are leaving.Figure 44. Out of Office window
b) Returning. Set the date when you will return.
c) Subject. Here you enter the subject of the reply for the OOO notification. The default subject can be used as is in most cases.
d) Additional body text. Include additional information for the OOO notification reply.
2. After you have entered all the above information, click the Enable and Close button at the top, to save and enable the OOO notification system.
3. When you return, you should disable the OOO notification system. To do that, click More, select Out of Office, and click the Disable and Close button.
- On your return date, you receive an OOO summary message that includes a list of the senders to whom the notification system sent OOO replies while you were away.
- The OOO notification service sends only one automated reply to each person who sends you mail while you're away, regardless of how many messages the person sends you during that time.
- The notification service is not an automatic broadcast, that is, a person must send you mail while you're away to receive an automated reply.
- The notification service replies to mail only during the time that you specify you are away, and replies to mail received on weekends if they are part of the time that you specify you are away.