04.18.2011

Ytria databaseEZ - Another really useful tool for Domino Admins and Developers

Tags: Tools Ytria Domino Notes

I have been working with Ytria's excellent tools for many years now and there's not a single day in my life as a Domino developer or admin I don't use scanEZ or one of the other tools. That's one of the reasons we became a business partner with Ytria.

For one of our customers who is running several dozens of Domino-based enterprise web sites I had to change the "inherit design from master template" name in 46 databases. Doing this manually would have been very tedious, but using the soon-to-be-released tool "databaseEZ" made this a matter of only a few seconds.

When databaseEZ has started, the UI is very similar to aclEZ or agentEZ. The navigation pane on the left allows me to select the databases I want to see in the grid. Even when I select all databases on the server, the grid updates in a breeze. Since the property "Inherit from" is not displayed in the grid by default, I have to select it in the "Grid Data Composition" panel on the right, press "Apply" and the information is populated instantly. Then I just need to group the databases by this property, select the ones I want to change and select "Edit Database Design Properties" from the context menu. There I can change the name of the template the databases inherit from and after OK'ing the dialog the grid is updated with the new data. In order to actually save my changes I press CTRL-S or select "Server - Apply Changes" from the menu and I'm done.

That's just one of the many features in databaseEZ which make my Domino life so much easier. I will post a more detailed review of the tool soon, just wanted to share this today. Thank you guys!

databaseEZ.png

08.11.2009

LotusScript.doc V2 beta is available

Tags: development lsdoc tools LotusScript

Mikkel has just published the first public beta of LotusScript.doc V2. It is a great tool for creating a documentation of all LotusScript code in a Notes application. We have been using it for many years now and have adopted the lsdoc comment style as a company standard.

I have been one of the alpha testers and I can tell you that the performance of creating the documentation is absolutely amazing. It only takes a few seconds to create a documentation of a really complex database like the mail template for example.

Now go and get it and provide Mikkel with feedback. He's been spending a lot of his spare time to create this little gem and we all can benefit a lot from his work.

01.31.2008

Do you know msconfig.exe?

Tags: Tools
Do you know that feeling which arises when waiting for a windows machine to come up? It gets slower and slower over lifetime. There are a lot of reasons for this behaviour. Besides heavy diskfragmentation, which I feel not really responsible for, some of the slowdown is caused by installing and deinstalling smaller and larger bits of software all the time. Although workstation virtualization was a real blessing for guys like me, because I can do most of the testinstallations in vms now, there is a lot of crap left on my production laptop. Think of all the more or less small tools around the gadgets you can stick to an usb port or connect via bluetooth these days. Sometimes I am really shocked when opening my taskmanager to see that there is a big load of software already in memory after system startup. You know, I have to have some space left for my tiny Notes standard client. Perhaps this is an embarrassing outing now, but I found msconfig.exe today for the first time, which seems to be really nice to control all the stuff which comes up automatically during startup. To be honest... I found it on a Vista client which I fought today. So, if you are in the same situation ... give it a try....

07.25.2007

Test Ytria Tools for free until August 25

Tags: Tools

Ytria currently has a summer promotion giving away test keys for all applications of the admin and developer suites. The keys are valid until August 25 so go ahead and check the tools out.

They are also doing introductory trainings on the tools (2hrs), you can contact Jan Mantkowski (jan_mantkowski@ytria.com) for details.

06.10.2007

aclEZ 0.2.2 Beta

Tags: Tools
aclEZ grid columns

Now that Hans-Peter has looked into agentEZ I wanted to see what the new beta of Ytria's aclEZ has to offer.

The UI is very similar to agentEZ and quite intuitive to use (most of it anyway). Select a server, select one or several databases and after all information has been collected the ACL information of the selected databases is displayed in a grid similar to a pivot table. The grid lists all ACL entries and displays data like access level, access rights and so on. Group entries can be expanded and are displayed in a popup window where you can even display the whole group hierarchy (the expanded view is also available in the grid itself). You can select the server and directory to resolve the groups in but even though all directories in the directory assistance are displayed the lookup only seems to work in the primary directory (error: entry not found in index (1028)) - but hey, this is beta software.

expanded group

The columns to display in the view can be selected. The entries can either be sorted by clicking on a column head or you can drag a column head to the area above the grid to group the entries. Dragging another column head there will create nested groupings. This is quite handy to discover security holes in your server. I grouped all ACL entries by name and access level and discovered two databases where -Default- was manager.

aclEZ grouped entries: default access manager

To ungroup the entries again you can either drag the column head back where you want it to be in the column heads or you can right-click it and deselect the "group by" menu entry. What I find a bit unfortunate is that when you do the latter the column is not displayed where it was before but is appended as the rightmost column. Also, when you drag a column head down into the grid the entries are ungrouped and the column is removed from the grid. So if I don't drag the columns back in place myself I have to re-order the columns manually again every time after I have grouped them.

What I was missing at first look in the grid were the roles. Then I discovered the lower grid. It has several tabs where it displays erros (e.g. databases you have no access to), allows to make modifications to multiple entries at once, displays the databases a user or group selected in the upper grid is present in and it also displays the roles in all databases in the grid the selected user or group has been assigned. I am a bit ambivalent regarding this display since I would have expected the roles to be displayed as columns in the upper grid as well. While this may be what I had expected it may not be the optimal solution since the grid can be quite wide just displaying the data it currently does. Maybe the column heads of columns containing just checkboxes could be icons instead of text to save some horizontal space for the roles.

aclEZ features a quite powerful seach option using regular expressions. The search works well but I wish that when searching for subsequent matches after doing a find first it would not only highlight the matching row but it would also display it in the visible area of the grid.

The current grid can be exported either to HTML or to a text file for further processing in Excel for example.

For some more screenshots see Chris Brandlehner's review of aclEZ.

Summary

When I had seen the Ytria tools for the first time I suggested to Eric Houvenaghel to create agentEZ but he had already though of that and it is great to see not only agentEZ but also aclEZ becoming reality. As I have been with all the other Ytria tools I am impressed with aclEZ. It is a powerful product to check your servers for security holes in the access control lists and it can also be used to maintain standard ACL formats within an organization. Things that are very hard to do just with the Domino Admin client. While this beta version still has some gotchas it looks very promising. Since Ytria constantly releases updates and bug fixes and responds very quickly to bug reports and even feature requests I have no doubt that agentEZ and aclEZ will become must have tools for the Domino administrator.

06.04.2007

New beta of agentEZ

Tags: Tools
A new beta (beta 2) of agentEZ and aclEZ is available for testing and download. As we are happy users of scanEZ and all the other Ytria tools, I started to play with agentEZ today, and I'm impressed.

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