Since HCL took ownership of the Notes/Domino platform in 2018, it has been working hard to modernize the platform. With regular new releases as a result. By the end of 2021, there was V12, followed by two interim releases 12.0.1 and 12.0.2 earlier this year.
And by the end of this year, HCL planned v14. There will be no v13, because HCL does not want to call bad luck on the product.
A lot of new features have already been announced in recent months with more to come very soon. Below is an overview of the most important new features coming up.
With Admin Central, HCL launches a module that will make it easier to perform standard administrative tasks for the Domino server. Where this is currently only possible through the Administrator Client on Windows, Admin Central runs on HCL Nomad, and therefore it is available on Mac, mobile devices (iOS and Android) and even through the browser.
Admin Central has a simple interface to for managing users and groups. It will also be possible to monitor the server and launch commands through a server console.
More options for this feature will be announced soon.
In the past, an administrator was required to regularly check for new updates/versions for the Domino server. This will be much easier in the next version, as Domino will check this for you and notify you in a timely manner.
You will not only be able to track the installed version for each server from V14 onwards, but also see if a newer version is available. Domino can even download and prepare it for installation immediately.
However, the installation is not (yet) automated, so the Administrator can still schedule it at a convenient time.
Also, downloading software releases shall be a lot easier. The complex and slow Flexnet will be replaced by a modern interface in which you can easily find the necessary HCL software to which you are entitled. In addition to download links for the software, the same screen also displays useful links such as release notes and support pages.
Furthermore, popular addon products such as Nomad, Verse and Ontime can be installed during server installation. You don’t have to do this separately as of v14.
Passkeys technology allows login without a user or password combination. As a result, users don’t have to remember complex passwords or use the same over and over again. Authentication is linked to a specific device through a computer, smartphone or usb-stick. This makes it more secure against phishing attacks and prevents hackers to pretend being somebody else.
HCL Domino v14 supports authentication using Passkeys.
If you want to learn more about Passkey, you can watch a clarifying video.
One of the most important changes for Domino developers is the upgrade of Domino from Java 1.8 to Java 17. This will certainly improve the performance of your java code.
The upgrade modernizes the Domino platform and gives you a whole new toolset for Java and XPages development. And you will be able to use code snippets you find from popular resources on the internet.
Code versioning and development collaboration are a thorny issues in Notes/Domino development. Until now, there is no easy way to do source control.
HCL is working on a new way to export your design elements. This will make it possible to make your design availabe for source control tools without too much hassle. This new enhancement will dramatically simplify collaboration between developers.
Restyle is a tool to give old Notes applications a new, standardized look-and-feel.
In v14, Restyle offers you a set of application icons that match the style of the Notes Client environment.
In addition to the current Restyle themes, you will be able to define your own colors and themes. This allows you to use company branding when restyling your apps.
The field size will be doubled from 32k to 64k.
A number of extras are added to LotusScript. You will be able to use Domino Query Language in views.
New functions will be provided to control DOMI (Domino Online Meeting Integration). Many details about this are not known at this time.
The Advanced property box introduced in v12 is made available in the Designer to view properties of design elements in details.
Last but not least, we go over the improvements that will impact end users directly.
In v14 gives you the possibility to use mailmerge to create newsletters or mass mailings.
Selecte a file (Excel, csv, …), map your colums to email fields an prepare the mailing. As simple as that.
HCL Notes v14 will also mark emails from outside your organisation. A (configurable) warnig is given above each external email.
Domino Online Meeting Integration is already available in Notes v12. This feature offers you the possibility to integrate meetings in your caleandar with tools such as Zoom, Webex or Teams.
Unfortunately it was not possible to configure proxy settings where necessary. This problem has now been resolved in v14.
HCL is leaving the 32bit Notes Client behind.
Mac users already used a 64bit client, but Windows users still had a 32bit client to their availability. As of v14, only 64bit Notes Clients will be released.
A number of improvements have been made to the Notes Client interface.
It took a while, but finally it will be possible to rearrange Workspace tabs in prefered order.
Until now, it is nearly impossible to find a specific setting in the client preferences. In v14, this is a problem from the past.
The options in the Notes client preferences have been categorized and numbered. This makes it much easier to find a specific setting.
Check out the interview our own Kris De Bisschop had with Andrew Manby, Head of Product Management at HCL Software.
If you want to discover the new v14 features with more detail, you can read the HCL release notes or watch these video’s: