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Troubleshooting calendaring & scheduling issues with CalPull database tool



Learn to use the CalPull database tool to ease the collection of end-user data related to Notes/Domino Calendaring & Scheduling issues. The CalPull tool (calpull.ntf) provides an easy way to grab Calendaring & Scheduling data at the convenience of end users without requiring much overhead.


About the CalPull tool

This tool allows Help Desk / Support personnel to generate automated emails to a user having difficulty with a Calendar event. The email contains a button for the receiving user to click which will allow them to select the problematic document, automatically extract and email the requested data back to the requestor (or a mail-in database). The technician initiating the calendar retrieval email can optionally pre populate the ApptUNID to fully automate the process.

(Updated version posted 10 Dec 2012)

NOTE: This template is provided as is with no implied or expressed warranties. This template is NOT supported by IBM Support.

Using the CalPull tool

The requesting user will report a problem to the Help Desk. The help desk engineer will initiate the request in the Calendar Pull Database typing in the user name that is having the issue, along with some descriptive text, and the name of the requestor or mail-in database to receive the response. A single request can be sent to multiple users (e.g., Chair, Invitees, Delegates) at the same time.

Typically the process starts with a report of "Invitee X cannot Accept my meeting" or "I cannot act on this notice I got from the Chair." This is where the investigator takes over.

To initiate the request, the investigating user clicks on the "New CalPull" button in the Action Bar.

This will create a new document like so:

Field Name Description
Request ID An automatically generated value that uniquely identifies this request.
Problem description Text to assist investigators with describing the user's problem
ApptUNID (Optional) This value can be obtained from the user's calendar entry to automatically retrieve the necessary data from multiple end users' mail files.
Send To The list of users who will receive this CalPull request. This should include all of the users from whom data should be retrieved.
Return To The recipient or mail-in database that will receive the collected data.
Email Subject The subject line of the email that the end users will receive
Email Body Additional text for the body of the message that will be delivered to the end users.
Request Options "Include mail design" - Retrieve the user's mail file design along with the calendar entries. This will greatly increase the size of the collected data.

"Include Notes.INI" - Retrieve the user's notes.ini file as well as the calendar entries.

"Include Calendar Profile" - Retrieve the user's calendar profile document as well as the calendar entries.

Upon receipt of the CalPull email, the recipients simply click on the button and that will generate a new dB with the matching ApptUNID docs in it to be sent to the specified user(s). If an ApptUNID was not populated, the user will have the option to select the problematic calendar document from the following places:
  1. Calendar
  2. Inbox
  3. Any other mail file for which the user has access

Additionally, the user is prompted if the data is confidential. If they answer yes, sensitive data is stripped out of the calendar documents during the collection process automatically.

Administration Options:

If you want to customize the email text and response text that get displayed, edit the Profile doc used to save it.

Field Name Description
Save Request Determines whether the CalPull request document will always be saved when created or sent.
Mail-in database name The Mail-In database that will be used as the recipient data store for the collected calendar data
Email Subject Determines whether the Request ID value should always be included in the subject of the request email.
Confirmation Message The text that will be displayed to the end user upon completion of the CalPull retrieval code.

"Always show confirmation when data collection is complete" - Determines whether this dialog box will be displayed at the completion of the CalPull retrieval code.
Email Body The default body text that will be included in the request email.
Request Options "Include mail design" - Retrieve the user's mail file design along with the calendar entries. This will greatly increase the size of the collected data.

"Include Notes.INI" - Retrieve the user's notes.ini file as well as the calendar entries.

"Include Calendar Profile" - Retrieve the user's calendar profile document as well as the calendar entries.

End user experience
    When the user receives and opens the resulting email, a message similar to this will appear in the memo:

    When the user presses the Click Me button the following steps will occur:

    1) The user will be prompted to select the database in which the problem calendar entry resides:

    2) The user will be prompted for the view or folder in which the entry can be found:

    3) The view will be presented for the user to select from. This example shows the calendar view:

    4) The user will be asked if any of the collected calendar entries contain confidential data. If so, certain fields such as Subject, Body, Location, etc. will be either removed from the captured data, or scrambled with a hashing formula to obfuscate the contents:

    5) Finally, the user is prompted for a short description of the problem.

    6) In the background, the data is then packaged into a temporary database file and sent via email to the repository listed in the original request.

    Creating a Mail-In Database document for a new database

    Follow these instructions for creating a mail-in database to receive and store the collected CalPull data:
      The mail-in database is designed to allow mail to be received by a database that is set up to receive mail, without the mail being added to a person's mail file. The mail-in database can then be accessed by one person, or by multiple people, who have access to read the database. For example, if you want multiple users on a mailing list to read specific mail, that mail can be sent to a mail-in database instead of sending it to numerous individual users. Those users can then open the database and review the mail that has been sent to that database.

      If a database is designed to receive mail, you must create a Mail-In Database document in the IBM® Lotus® Domino® Directory. This document must exist in the Domino Directory of every server that stores a replica of the database. The database cannot receive mail until you create this document. When replicating Mail-in databases to servers in another IBM® Lotus® Domino® domain, create a matching Mail-in database document in the Domino Directory of the target server.

      1. In the Domino Directory, make sure you have, at a minimum, Author access with the following privileges and roles selected:

      • Create Documents privilege
      • NetCreator role
      • NetModifier role

      2. From the People & Groups tab of the Domino Administrator, choose the Mail-In Databases Resources view.

      3. Click Add Mail-In database.

      4. On the Basics tab, complete these fields and then save the document:

      Field Description
      Mail-in name The entry for this database in the Domino Directory. Users and applications use this name to send documents to the database.
      Internet message storage The message storage preference:
      • No preference (default)
      • Prefers MIME
      • Prefers Notes Rich Text.
      Internet address SMTP address in the format mailfile@organization.domain. Complete this field if you want Internet users to be able to send messages to the database.
      Encrypt Incoming Mail Yes or no according to your preference. Mail sent to the mail-in database is encrypted with the IBM® Lotus® Notes® certified public key entered in the next field.
      Domain Domino domain of the server where the database resides.
      Server The fully-distinguished hierarchical name of the server where the database resides; for example, Server1/Sales/Acme
      Filename The path and filename of the database relative to the Domino Directory. For example, if the database named MAILIN.NSF is in the MAIL directory of the DATA directory, enter MAIL\MAILIN.NSF.
      5. On the Administration tab, complete these fields and then click Save & Close:
      Field Description
      Owners Fully distinguished hierarchical name of users allowed to modify this document.
      Administrators Users or groups who can edit this document.
      Allow foreign directory synchronization Choose one of these:
      • Yes -- Allows entry to be exchanged with foreign directories -- for example, a cc:Mail® directory -- so that users on the other system can look up the mail-in database in the cc:Mail post office directory and send mail to it.
      • No -- Does not allow the entry to be exchanged with foreign directories.
      Notes certified public key The certified public key to use when encrypting mail sent to this database. To copy a certified public key from the Domino Directory to this field, click "Get Certificates" and choose a name.
      Internet Certificate This field displays the Internet Certificate if one exists. If there is no Internet Certificate for this mail-in database, the field displays the message "Not Available."
      Issuer name The field is populated only if the Internet Certificate field displays an Internet Certificate.
      6. Give the name of the database to users so they can enter it in the To: field of messages destined for the database.

      For more information on setting up a database to receive mail, see the IBM® Lotus® Domino® Designer Help.

      Document information

      More support for: IBM Notes
      Calendaring and Scheduling

      Software version: 8.5

      Operating system(s): Linux, OS X, Windows, iOS

      Software edition: All Editions

      Reference #: 1607026

      Modified date: 03 June 2015

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