Thursday, April 21, 2011

Lotus Notes 8.5.2 and Microsoft Windows 7 64 Bit

We're currently testing Windows 7 - Not because we actually see a business need. It's not about support, applications or even new features. It's simply that it's too hard to buy PCs with Windows XP loaded on them these days.

Over the last few months, I've learned one very valuable lesson: There is NO benefit in Windows 7 unless you go 64 bit! Of course, that doesn't mean that there are many 64 bit applications out there to run on it.

Why is 64 bit so important for Windows 7?
Well, like all new Microsoft Software, it uses a bit more disk space and a bit more memory that its predecessors. Unfortunately, there's a 2GB memory limit in 32 bit windows - and it still applies to Windows 7.

That means that now Windows itself takes up more space but your maximum memory remains the same. Even if you have a PC with 4, 6 or 8GB RAM, 32-bit Windows will only use 2 GB.

Windows 7 64-Bit is a different story but weirdly, the limits aren't imposed by the bit-space but by Microsoft themselves - and it's different depending on which version of Windows you're running;
  • Starter: 8GB
  • Home Basic: 8GB
  • Home Premium: 16GB
  • Professional: 192GB
  • Enterprise: 192GB
  • Ultimate: 192GB

Where's the 64 Bit Version of Lotus Notes
Good question. There doesn't seem to be any answers on this one and even the IBM Helpdesk tech I spoke to yesterday was surprised that it didn't exist. I'm sure they're working on one though.

So.... The short answer is that There is NO 64 bit version of Lotus Notes 8.5.2, you need to use the 32 bit version instead.

But wait .... there's more.

I tried and Lotus Notes was so slow that it barely ran at all.

I've since applied Fixpack 1 and Fixpack 2 and it's back to normal - perhaps better than normal because it's got more memory space to run in (Windows isn't taking a big bite out of the 2GB space).

In reality, I think you only need fixpack 1 but it's good practice to add both.

Summary
Another short answer; When using 32-bit Lotus Notes 8.5.2 on 64 bit Windows, make sure that you have Fixpack 1 and 2 installed.

I hope this saves some people a bit of time since it's not quite so clearly stated elsewhere.
(and in the meantime, keep petitioning IBM to hurry up with the 64-bit version)

20 comments:

NotesConnectors said...

Gavin,
One really nice part of Windows 7 is the built in desktop search. You can click the start button and start typing your query and see instant results. You can even preview your hits in your results. Its a big time saver.

Dan Soares said...

Gavin, I would recommend going to 8.5.2 FP2 which fixes the SSO issue that existed for 64 bit WIndows.

Dan

Ralf M Petter said...

It is not correct, that Windows 32 bit uses only 2 GB of memory. Windows 32 can use up to 4 GB of your physical memory. The 2 GB myth comes from the fact, that every process in Windows 32 gets his own private address space. This private address space has a 2GB limit. With the use of the /3gb switch the limit can be extended to 3 GB. With the PAE Extension Win 32 can use even more physical memory then 4 GB.

Gavin Bollard said...

@Ralf M Petter,

That was always my belief too - it's certainly the case on our servers.

Unfortunately I discovered that putting 8GB into a 32 bit Win7 Pro PC gave me only 2GB (and that was mostly already used up by the OS).

Reinstalling 64 bit windows gave me the full 8GB.

Anonymous said...

Have you tried the various compatibility modes in Win7? I used the XP compatibility mode which appears to have a good effect.

Gavin Bollard said...

I haven't tried setting any compatibility modes yet. I might have a look at them but now with fixpack 2, it's all running smoothly.

Thanks.

Khamees said...

If I do not have any FP installed, do I need to install FP1 first, then FP2, then the new update to FP2?

And are there ways to deploy the FP via Group policy? i.e. do we have a .msi package instead of .exe?

Dean said...

Gavin, wondering if you'd seen the problem of Win7 64-bit and Lotus Notes 8.5.2, FP 2 or 3, where, when starting a new message, the 'Send', 'Send and File', 'Save as Draft', and 'Delivery Options' buttons do NOT appear, no do the input boxes for 'To', Cc, etc. Doing a refresh with F5 or F9 will make them appear, but when just starting a new message, they do Not.

Dean said...

Gavin, wondering if you'd seen the problem of Win7 64-bit and Lotus Notes 8.5.2, FP 2 or 3, where, when starting a new message, the 'Send', 'Send and File', 'Save as Draft', and 'Delivery Options' buttons do NOT appear, no do the input boxes for 'To', Cc, etc. Doing a refresh with F5 or F9 will make them appear, but when just starting a new message, they do Not.

Mike Rosenthal said...

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa366778%28v=vs.85%29.aspx#physical_memory_limits_windows_xp

a few seconds with google would confirm what the actual 32-bit XP limit is. Not sure why you would post something as fact that is so easily checked and be wrong.

Something is limiting your RAM. But it's not the 32-bit barrier.

Hint: The limit is for Memory address space not physical memory. This means that anything that uses Address Space counts towards the limit. not just RAM. Any Hardware that maps it's own memory to address space counts.

Got 2 gigs of memory on your fancy dancy Vid card? that's 2gigs of RAM your OS can no longer address.

Gavin Bollard said...

@Dean, I haven't seen that problem yet but I'll keep my eye out for it.

Gavin Bollard said...

@Mike, sorry there's a bit of a typo in the original post but the concept is the same.

The memory limit for 32 bit Windows XP is 4GB BUT the memory limit for applications running on that system - including the Lotus Notes Client is actually 2GB.

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I have Lotus Notes client installed on a Windows 7 64 bit OS.
All these are on a Dell Vostro laptop, model 3550.

I have installed the three Lotus Fix Packs and Windows is up to date with patches and everything.

Still, when creating a new mail message, I cannot see the buttons (Send, Send and File, Save as Draft, etc.) But if I move my cursor on the Menu bar I can see the delimiters. Also, if I click on F9 they appear, just to disappear again when creating a new message.

I un-installed and re-installed Lotus and the three patches, I have re-applied the template, nothing will do it.

Do you have any fix for it? I have two users that have the same problem on the same type of laptops.

If installed on a PC, or another type of laptop, it works.

Thank you.

mlogigan@technomuses.ca

CDT@Datec said...

I have the same problem... the fields disappear and do not appear even by pressing the F5 key... Please advise if anyone has a fix for this issue... I have:

W7-64bits, Lotus Notes 8.5.2 FP3.. I believe issues started after installing Win Explorer 9...

CDT@Datec said...

Gavin... I have this same problem with Win7 64-bit and Lotus Notes 8.5.2, FP 2 or 3, where, when starting a new message, the 'Send', 'Send and File', 'Save as Draft', and 'Delivery Options' buttons do NOT appear, no do the input boxes for 'To', Cc, etc. Doing a refresh with F5 or F9 will make them appear, but when just starting a new message, they do Not... I reinstalled my Laptop over 4 times to fix this.... the first few times notes runs it does correctly and then after installing other SW this start to happen... I do not know if there is some incompatibility or install sequence that we should be aware of.. Especially with IE9 or Flash?? Please Help… TXS…

Anonymous said...

Hi, just for reinforcement I have the same issue with the buttons missing and the frames around the To:, CC:, etc. fields not displaying.

I have Notes 8.5.1 SHF29 on Win 7 64; but I don't have IE9 installed - and haven't installed any software lately.

My problem appeared seemingly out of the blue - and I was able to "drag" the buttons back onto the screen the first time (they are actually there as small hidden bars) - and the problem corrected for a couple of weeks. Now it's back. I've refreshed the design, replaced the template, etc. - all to no effect.

Mary said...

Any fixes for this problem?

Gavin Bollard said...

I don't think there's an official fix for the missing button problem (which I don't have because we use a modified mail template).

However... there's a good discussion of the topic here and it suggests either using the basic notes client (not a great idea) or putting the sidebar into 'normal' state (showing the icons only, not expanded or closed).

Apparently this is fixed in 8.5.3 which is due around Tuesday, 4 October 2011 (according to Ed Brill) and also, the problem is dependent upon the screen resolution.

Anonymous said...

I can turn this problems on and off by changing the right side bar view.

The send button only show up in the thin view (Ctrl + 3).

we have about 800 machine roll out only 1 have this problems. Very weird.

Anonymous said...

I too have this problem, but tried as indicated by Anonymous and it worked - that is switch on the right hand tool bar (by pressing Ctrl & 3). When I opened up a new mail, the buttons were back. Strange, but it worked!