Friday, December 9, 2011

IBM Connections: Status updates and pictures

Because IBM decided to offer 2 modules of their Connections suite for free to entitled Lotus Domino customers, we decided to create an environment with the functionality the customer will get. Great for demo's, plus it shows us what is exactly in the package, and what is not.
Since there was currently no hardware available, I did launch an instance in the Amazon cloud to demonstrate IBM Connections to our prospects and customers. After some work, we had Profiles and Files up and running, and started filling our profiles. After all, an empty Connections environment is pretty useless.

Together with Connections, you can use a Files plugin and a Status Update plugin for the Lotus Notes Eclipse client, so those were installed as well. After some configuration, everything seemed to work.

Except... pictures! All my collegues were grey (the default icon).

Some investigation showed why things were not working as expected: The Profiles application on the underlying Websphere Application Server was not accessible to anonymous users, only for logged in users. As soon as this was adapted, the pictures were visible. However, since our server was not on premises but in the cloud, this was not a viable solution.
So it seems that the plugin, even though the user was logged in to get the status updates, tried to pick up the picture without using any credentials.

Time to contact IBM and enter a support ticket (PMR). And after providing them with the extra required information about version information and underlying Operating Systems, there came a pretty straighforward solution: Close the Notes client, and add the following line to your plugin_customization.ini file:

After starting up the Notes client again, there are the pictures of my collegues! And after pushing this setting through a policy, my collegues can see the profile pictures as well.

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