Lotus Quickr - IBM Lotus Notes

The Lotus Quickr product has been available for several years. Previously known as QuickPlace, Quickr has become recognized as a leader in web-based team collaboration, and it is used in many large corporations throughout the world.

The goal of the change from QuickPlace to Quickr is simplification. IBM wants the product to be so simple that an end user can, with a few clicks, generate productive services. There is also a focus on server deployment simplification.

One of the key components of Quickr is the connector technology that it introduces. These connectors will allow for direct and programmatic interaction with the data stored in the Quickr places. Connectors that will be shipping with Quickr 8.5.1 are as follows:

  • Notes
  • Sametime
  • File System/Windows Explorer
  • RSS/ATOM

Quickr with services for Domino

The Domino-based edition of Quickr should be thought of as a significant upgrade to the existing QuickPlace product line. This product has been maturing over many years, and this new release provides many new capabilities. These include native support for wikis and blogs out of the box.

The basic installation process for Quickr with service for Domino is very simple. It involves installing a base Domino server version 8.5.1. The Quickr product components are then installed on top of this server. Based on this writing, the support for Quickr 8.5.1 will be supported on Domino 8.5.1 and Domino 8.5.3.

Currently, support for Quickr 8.5.1 installation support on Domino 8.5.2 is being skipped and will go straight to Domino 8.5.3. Quickr for Domino is installed in four basic steps that are listed as follows:

  • Install and configure Lotus Domino Server 8.5.1 and Fix Pack 5 (or Domino 8.5.3) I
  • nstall Lotus Quickr 8.5.1 on the Domino Server
  • Configure Multi-server Single Sign-on (MSSO) authentication, Domino servlet engine, and UTF-8 character encoding on the Lotus Domino Server
  • Configure Quickr Domino Server settings

Installing and configuring Lotus Domino Server

Installing and configuring Lotus Domino Server is a standard Lotus Domino Server install. There are some additional Notes.ini variables that can be added, but overall this is just a standard Domino install. It is recommended to install Domino Offline Services (DOLS), if you would like to take your Quickr Places offline. Some of these Notes.ini variables could include the following:

  • Create_R8_Databases=1: This is used for On-Disk Structure management.
  • Create_R85_Databases=1: This is used for On-Disk Structure management.
  • $QuickPlaceDisallowAnonAccess: This contains the settings that enable and disable anonymous access.
  • QuickPlaceNestedGroupLimit=x: Here, x is the number of nested group lookups, the higher the number, the slower the authentication.
  • INET_Authenticate_with_Secondary=1: This is set to use a secondary directory.
  • $DOLS_TCPIPAddress=1: This is used to configure a cluster that uses the IBM Network Dispatcher to work with Domino Offline Services. A value of 0 (zero) disables this setting.
  • CheckCacheBeforeDSAPI=1: Enables authentication to work for offline users. A value of 0 (zero) disables this setting.
  • EXTMGR_ADDINS: Dependent on an operating system.
  • libdolextn (on AIX): Enables Domino Offline Services to work with Lotus Quickr.
  • NoWebFileSystemACLS=1: If you use the Sun Java System Portal Server with IBM Lotus Quickr as a reverse proxy, use the Notes.ini setting to prevent users from having to re-authenticate after installing places offline. A value of 0 (zero) disables this setting.

Installing Lotus Quickr

It is very easy to install Lotus Quickr. The following screens show you how to get your Domino Quickr Server installed:

  1. The first step is to get your Lotus Quickr Code from the Lotus Passport site.
  2. Launch the code and you will see the following screen:
  3. Installing Lotus Quickr

  4. Next, select the temporary directory. We used ETempQuickr-Install as our temporary directory for this demonstration. The following screenshot shows this selection:
  5. ETempQuickr-Install as our temporary directory

  6. Once the install starts, you will see a splash screen. As noted, Quickr 8.5.1 will run on Lotus Notes 8.5.1 (with Fix Pack 5) or the new 8.5.3 release.
  7. Lotus Notes 8.5.1

  8. As usual, you will receive a Software License Agreement dialog box (see the following screenshot). You can print the agreement from this dialog box, click on the Accept or the Decline button to accept or decline the agreement:
  9. Software License Agreement dialog box

  10. The next set of dialog boxes provide the interface questions that need to be answered as part of a standard Quickr install:
  11. set of dialog boxes provide the interface questions

  12. An installed Domino server is required for Quickr to be hosted on. As shown in the following screenshot, the question in the dialog box is about the location of the Domino server's executable files. In this installation, this location was found automatically and the location was prompted to the end user. Overall, this location cannot be changed; it must match the location of where Domino is installed:
  13. Choose destination location

  14. The following screenshot confirms the location of the data and the Domino executable directory. If this is not correct then you can go back, or cancel the installation and review the Notes.ini file for the actual location of where these elements are located. If this is correct click on the Next button to proceed:
  15. Start coping files

  16. The following screenshot shows a progress dialog box. This gives you an idea of the Quickr installation progress:
  17. progress dialog box

  18. The following dialog box shows that you have completed the base installation of Quickr. Click on the Next button to go to the next step:
  19. completed the base installation of Quickr

  20. This step is where you define the Quickr Administration's username and password, as shown in the following screenshot. You will be prompted anytime that you need to make changes to any of the Quickr administration changes. Click on the Next button to continue:
  21. Specify name and password

  22. At this point, you are finished with the basic install for Quickr. As shown in the following screenshot, click on the Finish button to complete this install:
  23. basic install for Quickr

Configuring Multi-server Single Sign-on (MSSO) authentication

The next step is to set up the Multi-Server Single Sign-on (MSSO) authentication. In older releases of Lotus Domino, the MSSO was denoted as Server Single Sign-on (SSO). The features provide the ability for Web users to log in to a Domino or Websphere server once. A "token" will be provided to each user's Web client that will, in effect, authenticate that user for any server that is sharing the MSSO-based credentials. End users will only be prompted once for their credentials. The username and password will not be asked for again.

Base requirements for MSSO

Each end user browser must have their cookies enabled. As a token is being used, the browser must have the ability to accept those tokens. If you would like to review the cookie then just add javascript:alert(document.cookie) as a comment in place of a URL. Do not enter "http://".

The DNS domain that applies to the participating SSO servers is specified to each MSSO server configuration document. IP addresses cannot be used as part of the URL syntax. For example, http://192.9.200.20/ is not a legal entry for MSSO.

Also, it is critical for the DNS name to match the entry point into the server. For example, each MSSO configuration is setup based on a DNS name (example.com). As long as a server can resolve to an address, there is the possibility that HTTP can respond. But in the case of MSSO, the DNS name for the URL must match what was configured in the Domino server.

For example, DNS via NSLookup shows an IP address assigned to IBM.com as 9.9.9.9. Also, DNS via NSLookup shows an IP address assigned to example.com as 9.9.9.9.

If the DNS name is example.com, the IBM.com address will not accept the MSSO token. WebSphere cannot use Domino based authoritative LTPA tokens. To include Domino and WebSphere in the same LTPA group, you need to create the authoritative LTPA token first in WebSphere then you must export the LTPA token from WebSphere and import it into Domino.

Now, that you understand some of the basic rules, let's create a MSSO document and the associated security keys.

You can use the Domino Server document or a site document for the base Domino Web configuration settings. This is up to you and how you have configured your environment.

  1. Open the Administration Server—names.nsf.
  2. Select the Internet Sites view.
  3. Click on Create Web SSO Configuration.
  4. In the SSO document, click on Keys.
  5. Initialize the Web SSO Configuration with the shared secret key, at this point you have the following two choices:
    • To choose Domino only, select the Create Domino SSO Key option:
    • Base requirements for MSSO

    • Choose Domino and WebSphere and import the Keys.
  6. The following screenshot shows the SSO (MSSO) configuration document:
  7. SSO (MSSO) configuration document:

  8. The final step for MSSO is to assign the token to a server or a site document. As mentioned earlier, you will need to assign the MSSO to your server or a site document. Be careful and enter the correct name for the fully qualified host name. If you are using a server document to host the MSSO then set the Load Internet Configuration from Server/Internet Sites document—this will be set to Disabled for the server and Enabled for site documents:
  9. Server:Quickr1/The company

The following screenshot shows your final step. In the Domino Web Engine tab, select the Multiple Single Sign on option for the Session authentication field. This will then display a dialog box showing the LTPA tokens that you created. Select the one that matches your Internet domain name:

Server:Quickr1/The company

Now the server is configured for MSSO. Restart HTTP (or the Domino Server).

Configuring Quickr Domino Server settings

So far, you have set up Domino, Quickr, and MSSO. Now, it is time to configure the Quickr Settings. The following steps describe this process:

You will see the following screenshot:

Configuring Quickr Domino Server settings

As shown in the preceding screenshot, there are three important points on this screen. They are:

  • The login/logout tab. This is how you manage the Quickr Server. Use the Administration password that you set as part of the Quickr install (Marked as 1 in the preceding screenshot).
  • There is a link to download the Lotus Connections Connectors (Marked as 2 in the preceding screenshot).
  • If you are authenticated then you will see the Administration link. This link does not display unless you have authenticated to the Quickr Server. You will see there are two basic areas of Administration:
  • Place Administration: This link provides the ability for the Administrator to manage the sites, enable policies, and locked out sites.
  • Site Administration: This link provides the ability for the Administrator to manage the complete Quickr Server. This includes Security, Directory links, and other interesting settings such as file size.

Directory integration

After you have installed Quickr, there is some additional configuration required, depending on the intended usage. They are:

  • User/group directory configuration is used to control the authorization and authentication of the environment.
  • Sametime integration is used to enable presence awareness within the Quickr places.
  • QPServlet configuration is used for WebSphere Portal integration.
  • The user/group directory configuration allows you to select one of two directory types:
  • Lotus Domino Directory allows users and groups to be stored in the names. nsf database (public address book) and corresponding directories surfaced via directory assistance.
  • LDAP directory allows for users in a supported native LDAP directory (for example, Domino, IBM Tivoli Directory Server, Microsoft Active Directory, Novell Directory, or Sun One Directory). This configuration allows for the refinement of the settings used to interact with the LDAP source.

Application development

The final integration component of Quickr with services for WebSphere Portal and Domino comes in the area of application development. As Quickr is built on top of a Domino foundation, it is possible to use traditional Domino development techniques to customize and extend it in many ways. Developers can use the standard Lotus Developer client to extend the use of Quickr places.

Quickr with services for WebSphere Portal

The WebSphere Portal-based edition of Quickr represents a significant application in the Web 2.0 space. It heavily leverages these technologies to bring an industry-leading collaboration experience. This product expands on the capabilities originally created from IBM Workplace Collaboration Services and IBM Workplace Services Express.

Installing Lotus Quickr services

The installation of Quickr services for the WebSphere Portal server has been optimized for ease of deployment. There are three installation types that are available in the setup program:

  • Departmental/Express provides the fastest deployment. The server is fully deployed with all necessary components including DB2.
  • Advanced Single Server allows for additional options during setup for future expansion.
  • Advanced Enterprise Cluster allows for a base installation that is intended for a clustered deployment. Additional details about the product installation are available in the Quickr administration guide.

Integrating Sametime for Quickr WebSphere Portal

The use of awareness within Quickr services for WebSphere Portal is configured in the same way as any other WebSphere Portal installation:

  • Configure the Sametime server using the LDAP directory. It is possible to use the native Domino directory for Sametime, but integration is easier if WebSphere Portal/Quickr and Sametime are both using LDAP.
  • Configure SSO between WebSphere Portal/Quickr and Sametime. This is accomplished by exporting the LTPA token value from the WebSphere application server and importing it into the Domino domain hosting the Same time servers.
  • Update the wpconfig.properties file for WebSphere Portal/Quickr with the values for the Sametime server. This includes the following:
    • Sametime host name
    • Sametime protocol (HTTP)
    • Sametime http port
  • There are additional configuration options available in the CSEnvironment. properties file to facilitate name mapping, if a different directory is used for Sametime.
  • Run the WPSconfig.bat/.sh lcc-configure-sametime configuration program to name the necessary system changes.

Lotus Quickr Connectors

One of the key features of Quickr is the openness provided by the connector architecture. These connectors allow for direct interaction with the Quickr servers independently of the backend architecture (WebSphere Portal/Domino). To install the Lotus Quickr Connectors, you will need to complete the following steps:

  1. The installation begins via the large link on the main page of the Quickr place page. This link will initiate the download and installation of the connector's package. This is handled as a standard install package starting at the welcome screen. The next dialog box will ask about language. The following screenshot shows English (United States) as the selected language:
  2. Choose setup language

  3. After you click on OK, the install will start. You will see the InstallShield Wizard and the installer will be installed:
  4. InstallShield Wizard and the installer will be installed

  5. The next step is for you to select what features. The following screenshot shows all of the features being installed, but normally you just install the features that you will use. Select the connector type and click on the Next button:
  6. all of the features being installed

  7. Once you have selected your connectors, the installer will install each of the connectors for you; click Next to continue:
  8. installer will install each of the connectors

  9. The connector will now be installed on your machine. Now that the Quickr Connector is configured, it will be visible in the various applications. Within Lotus Notes, Quickr connectors are visible from the Actions menu. This allows interaction with the Quickr services to provide links to content and save file attachments into the content store:
  10. Quickr services to provide links to content

  11. The following screen is called Insert Link from Places. It allows a user to send a link to a document in the Quickr content store instead of putting it in an e-mail message. This allows different users to access a central copy of the content. After the link has been added to the e-mail message, others can use it to open the content:
  12. Insert link from places

The connector for Sametime allows access to Quickr content stores. It is implemented as a Lotus Expeditor plugin within the Sametime 8.5.1 client (and higher). The connector for Microsoft Office provides access to Quickr document management functions directly from within Office applications. As you can see, the Lotus Quickr connectors provide for tight integration into the content. This will give the end users a choice as to how they work and interact with their content.


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