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We have a Lotus Notes 8.5.3 installation which has, up until now, co-existed with a 3rd party document management system; we have been able to export messages from the Notes 8.5.3 email application into flat files, and these files look to be self contained slabs of Domino's DXL format. The 3rd party document management system does some magic behind the scenes which allows Lotus Notes to open these files again on demand, and display all the email's formatting, attachments and images, etc.

Now we are getting rid of the document management system, and this functionality is going to disappear. However, we would still like some way to open these exported email files within Lotus Notes. Ideally, we would want to simply double-click the email file from the desktop (for example) and it would open up in Lotus Notes' mail application just like it used to, with formatting intact.

My question is: Is it possible, with out-of-the-box functionality or with some form of development, to have a file open from the desktop in the Lotus Notes mail app? If so, what would be recommended for me to research? I have zero Lotus Notes experience (but willing to learn), so I would be keen to know if it's possible before I go too far down this rabbit hole...

Thanks in advance :)

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I'm not aware of anything out-of-the-box, but it's definitely possible to develop a solution in any VB or C#, or Java or (or any language that can use COM objects). The key would be the NotesDXLImporter class. Here is a small sample in LotusScript. This code is not a standalone program, but it shows the basics of how to use the class in a syntax that is similar to old VB6. There are many tutorials out there on Notes development, but most are geared toward either LotusScript (which only runs inside the Notes client, so not suitable for something that you double-click on in Windows) or Java, but if you search on StackOverflow for Lotus-Notes and a language you're comfortable developing in you'll likely find a few links to get started. If you can get started on it and have specific questions, then StackOverflow will be a good place to get those questions answerd. The forums on IBM's DeveloperWorks site is also a good place to look for advice on this, and the OpenNTF site is a good place to look for sample code or maybe even an open source solution that you could work with. Of course to develop it as a standalone program you'll have to deal with more than just the Notes APIs, including the details of installing your program as the handler for double-clicks on the DXL files.

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Thanks, this seems like the path to take. I did have a play around with Domino Designer and was able to build an "Agent" inside an application to manually load a DXL file - and it worked! (not bad days work for someone who knew nothing about Domino). Now just need to work out the specifics of creating a file-handler to allow the users to double click a DXL file, and perform this same process. –  DRVR Feb 12 at 4:11

If the file format is EML, Notes 8.5.3 can open it. If you are lucky, your document management system stored the mails as EML.

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