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How to Launch Notes/Designer Along with the OSGi Console

As of release 8.0 of Lotus Notes and release 8.5.0 of Domino Designer, both applications have been built upon the Eclipse platform. Eclipse itself is built upon the OSGi platform. As of Notes 8.5.1, it is now possible to run XPages applications within the Notes client.

With the emergence of the official XPages extension APIs in Notes/Domino 8.5.2 and the powerful functionality delivered as extensions to XPages (such as the XPages Extension Library), it is becoming more likely that, over time, end users will have Extension Library plug-ins installed into the Notes client platform. Either this can occur directly as a result of the user manually installing them or the plug-ins may be autoprovisioned to the platform via policy directives. Undoubtedly, at some point, XPages developers will need to debug the Notes client to figure out why certain XPages applications or functionality is not working as expected. The first step in such debugging should almost always be analysis to determine whether the extended plug-ins in question are actually installed and running on the Notes client. The most accurate way to determine whether a plug-in is installed and running within the Notes client (or Domino Designer) is through the use of the OSGi console.

All the commands previously discussed and documented are available both on the Domino server and on the Notes client (and Domino Designer). However, the OSGi console that runs with the Notes client is a pure OSGi console, so it is not necessary to enter the HTTP task prefix required on the Domino server console. In the case of the Notes client OSGi console, it is necessary only to type the actual OSGi command—for example:

diag com.ibm.xsp.core

as opposed to

tell http osgi diag com.ibm.xsp.core.

To display the OSGi console for the Notes client or Domino Designer, the user must launch Notes with some additional arguments that tell the core Notes code to launch the console in a separate window when the Notes client is launching.

To do this, the user must navigate to the Notes program directory in a DOS prompt and enter the following DOS command:

notes.exe –RPARAMS –console

The RPARAMS argument for Notes and Domino Designer signals to both programs that the user is entering arguments that are to be redirected to the Eclipse and OSGi runtime. It may be useful to create a new shortcut on your desktop that enables you to easily launch the OSGi Console with Notes or Domino Designer. To do this, simply copy your existing Notes or Domino Designer launch shortcut and modify the Target information as follows:

C:\Notes85\notes.exe -RPARAMS -console "=C:\Notes85\notes.ini"

Here, C:\Notes85\ is the location of your Notes program directory. All the remaining shortcut information should be the same as your existing Notes or Domino Designer shortcut, as shown in Figure 3.9.

Figure 3.9

Figure 3.9 Shortcut to launch Notes with the OSGi console

Arguments after the –RPARAMS parameter are sent to the Eclipse and OSGi runtimes for processing. Users should be aware that closing the Notes OSGi console window directly is not supported and can cause undesired behavior, such as causing the Notes program to hang. All instances of Notes, Domino Designer, and Domino Administrator should be shut down before running this command. Figure 3.10 shows the OSGi console running with Notes.

Figure 3.10

Figure 3.10. Notes client running with the OSGi console

You can find more information on specific OSGi commands at these sites:

http://eclipse.org/equinox/

http://fusesource.com/docs/esb/4.1/command_ref/ESBosgi.html

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