You may have read or heard about the new feature that allows for the auto-population of groups in Domino 8.5. Since I have firstÂ learned of it I got quite excited, until I got hold of the new version to discover that IBM spoilt the community with the vast amount of 2 options: None and Home Server
Unfortunately the documentation confirmed my suspicion that this was about it: “Note For IBM Lotus Domino 8.5, Home Servers is the only auto-populate method available.”
While I see a reason for having aÂ list of peopleÂ populated by the home/mail server they are working on, there must be more to come to please today’s administrators.
Looking into the design of the group form and the field valuesÂ of an existing auto-populating group it appears that there must be a way to extend the options available.
While I was expecting some kind of @Formula as source for the populationÂ for the list it turns out that IBM has decided to take a different approach. The SelectionCriteria field defines nothing else than a LDAP filter. This is rather interesting as the LDAP task itself does not need to be running on the server and the list of attributes is not restricted to the fields defined in the LDAP configuration.
Anyhow, how does this knowledge allow us to configure our own auto-population rules? There are a number of options. First and foremost you could just have a button in the toolbar that displays a pop-up that allowsÂ youÂ to alter the value of the SelectionCriteria field. Not so nice and probably a nightmare for admins to come but definitely working.
Similar to the LDAP schemaÂ IBM made the whole feature extendable as they most certainly planned toÂ make additionalÂ filter options available in the future. WhenÂ opening the names.nsf with the Domino Designer, you will find a subform called ‘Home Server’ in the Shared Elements, Subforms section. This Subform has an alias of ‘$AutoPopulate1‘ and, hold your breath, contains nothing else then the fields used to configure the home server.
You could create a new subform named ‘Custom’,Â ‘Cheescake’Â or ‘Banana’. The name does not actual matter as long as the alias is named $AutoPopulateX, whereas X could be any unique number. Since 1 has been taken already with the Home Server rule and we could safely assume that IBM will continue to increment these numbers as they add new features it might be save to start our numbering somewhere in the $AutoPopulate99 range. Remove the hide-when option for the SelectionCriteria field, makeÂ it editableÂ and add a comment field if you like and you’ll end up with anÂ interface like this:
I guess that theÂ the number of possibleÂ auto-population filters is now only restricted by your imagination.