Volume: 18
Issue: 3
Edition: Fall 2005
Authors: Mical Palumbo
Department: I.T. Services
Categories: Archiving, E-Mail, Lotus Notes, Tips
Position in a view: 4
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Managing Your Lotus Notes Mailbox

Your day has just begun. The first order of the day is to check any important memos from colleagues, supervisors, or managers. You open up your mailbox and now wish you had stayed in bed. There is even a message from your e-mail administrator advising you to reduce the size of your mailbox. Is managing your e-mail beginning to overwhelm you?   Here are a few tips to help you control  the size of your mailbox and allow you to climb out from the black hole of the ever increasing volumes of electronic communication.

First of all, you might want to spend a few minutes organizing  your mailbox. If you have all your e-mail in the Inbox, you will have a hard time finding that specific message that your boss insisted on you reading for  today’s meeting. A good way to organize your messages is to move them from your inbox to a new folder.

To create a new folder, click Create on the Menu and then choose Folder. A Create Folder dialogue box will appear. Under Folder name type in the name you wish to give the folder. In the second frame where it says Select a location for the new folder, you can highlight Folders and  the folder will be created from the main Folder level. If you click on one of the other already created folders, the new folder will be nested in that particular folder. Once you have completed this, choose OK. Now you are ready to move the appropriate e-mails to their new location.



You can choose to drag and drop the messages from one folder to another or you can choose Folder from the button selection at the top of your mailbox, and then Move to Folder. A dialogue box will come up and you are then able to choose the folder where you wish to deposit that particular e-mail.



How do I find out the size of my mailbox?  I can’t believe it has grown so quickly!!  To check the size of your mailbox, you can Choose Actions from the top menu in Notes, then choose  Add-on Features, and finally click on Show Mailbox Info. A dialogue box will appear with current information about your mailbox file size, used space, unused space, what your mailbox quota is and the number of documents.


Once you confirm that that your mailbox is indeed growing, you can now take steps to reduce its size.

A quick way to see the sizes of individual e-mail messages is to sort them by size. To view all the documents in your mailbox, click on Views on the left hand side and then click on All Documents. This view allows you to see every document that is in your mailbox. This includes things like your e-mail as well as calendar entries, To Do’s and so on.  You can now sort  by clicking on the Size column heading at the top of the list of documents. This will provide you with a list illustrating the largest at the top to the smallest at the bottom.


At this point, you may choose to delete the largest e-mail or save the attachment that is associated with it. You may choose a network location, your local hard drive or possibly a Document Library that may have been set up for your department to store this attachment. When you double-click on the attachment within the e-mail, a dialogue box appears with the option to Save. Once you click on Save, another box will come up allowing you to choose the location where you will place the attachment.



Once you have saved the document, you are ready to delete the attachment from the e-mail message. Double-click on the attachment, then choose Delete. When you say Yes  to confirm the deletion, it will leave a notation that the attachment was deleted along with the name of the attachment for future reference. Now you have several options, a couple of them being to Save and File and to Save and Close. If you choose Save and File, a dialogue box will appear allowing you to save the document in the folder of your choice. If you choose Save and Close, the document will be saved in its original folder.


You have finally made it through ruthlessly deleting e-mail, emptying your trash, saving and deleting attachments, and moving them into appropriate folders but you find that your mailbox is still over 120 MB’s. What are you  going to do? Maybe it is time to look at archiving some of your e-mail.

Server archiving is available for all Lotus Notes users. To have this set up, you will need to contact the HelpDesk athelpdesk@uwindsor.ca or by phone at extension 4440.

What archiving does is provide a way for you to store your older e-mail so that you may access it from your archive mailbox while reducing  your main mailbox size. Server archiving is encouraged for various reasons. One of the most important is that once your archived mail is on the server, it is backed up and can be restored if for some reason a document has been accidentally deleted. If you archive your e-mail to your local PC and it is deleted, it can not be retrieved.  Another benefit of having your archive sitting on the server is that you may access it from any location where you have the Lotus Notes client set up as well as  through Domino Web Access (iNotes)( see the figures below).

Lotus Notes Client

Domino Web Access

Once you have clicked on Tools, Archive and then not accessed in X days (Options available are30, 60 or 90 days), your archived mailbox will appear. It looks the same as your current mailbox except that it has a watermark of a filing cabinet and it will also be labeled as the Mail Archive.


The archive will retain the folders that are in your current mailbox. For example, if there was an e-mail archived from your inbox, then it will be stored in the inbox in your archive. If there was an e-mail that was archived from your Miscellaneous folder then it would appear in the Miscellaneous folder in the archive.

Now that you have cleaned up your mailbox and have archiving in place, you are on the way to e-mail heaven!  You have it all under control! Just keep in mind that there are still more ways to making your e-mail work for you. Here are a few hints when dealing with e-mail on a day to day basis: