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How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

Mat Newman  July 3 2012 10:00:40
During last weeks Lotus Notes training a question that came up frequently was why Lotus Notes doesn't have alarms on the users Calendar entries.  Of course, Lotus Notes does have the ability to enable alarms on each individual entry, the option is located in the top right-hand corner of every Calendar type:

Figure 1: Tick the Alarm Box

Enable alarms by ticking the Notify Me check box

Once the user has clicked the "Notify Me" check box, the calendar entry will have an alarm set on it, which can further be customised for that particular entry by clicking the 'clock' icon to bring up the "Alarm Notifications" dialog.

Figure 2: Click the Clock:

Click the clock icon to set additional alarms

Figure 3: To bring up the Alarm Notifications for additional alarm options

Setting additional options for times, sounds and notifications

Within the alarm notifications dialog you can change the time when the alarm goes off, choose the sound, and even email another person to notify them of the event.

HUGE Calendar Tip #1:

If you include an email address in the "Send mail notification with subject" field, at the time the alarm is scheduled an email message will be sent with the Subject of the Calendar entry, and the content of the Calendar details will be included in the message body. I use this feature in a reminder entry type to send email messages at a specific time :-)

You can even include an external email address, so if your mobile device synch's with an account other then Lotus Notes, you can still receive your alarm notifications


Automatically adding alarms to every NEW Calendar entry type:


So the next thing you're going to want to do is set alarms by default for every new calendar entry type.  This is pretty easy:
1.        In your Calendar, Choose More -> Preferences from the Action Bar (Tools->Prefs in older versions of Lotus Notes),
2.        Go to the Calendar & To Do -> Alarms tab in the preferences dialog,
3.        Turn on "Display Alarm Notifications",
4.        Click to enable alarms for each entry type, and set the default time when the alarms should go off.

Figure 4: Enabling Calendar Alarms for every NEW Calendar entry type

Use preferences to set alarms on every new Calendar entry

And that leads me onto the next tip:

HUGE Calendar Tip #2:

There's nothing worse than getting into the office and having an Anniversary alarm staring you in the face to say today is an important birthday or event ... now you know why that special someone was annoyed with you before you left for work ;-)

I set the default alarm for Anniversaries to be 7 days in advance, which gives more than enough notification to organise a card or gift, even if it has to be posted somewhere.


Alarms for Lotus Notes Calendar entries, easy!

Enjoy :-)

Comments

1Steve Pitcher  07/03/2012 12:24:47  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

Mat, great tip.

We turn the calendar notifications on by default with a policy. The screen shots you show above are what we give to users to allow them to customize or turn off the notifications. Just why this isn't enabled by default is a bit of a head scratcher, but would be a best practice enablement for any Domino policy IMHO.

2Mat Newman

07/03/2012 16:33:52  How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

@1, Steve: Thanks mate. Yes - this is one of those settings that i"ve never been able to understand why the default is off. But then again, most of the stuff in Lotus Notes is off by default, and that's when one hears of people complaining about stupid stuff like "Lotus Notes can't send or receive formatted email!". I can feel a 'Best Practices" session coming on ;-)

Mat Newman IBM Champion

3Chris Miller  07/04/2012 5:26:19  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

Strangely I remember some companies not wanting this on by default so alarms do not go off for every meeting and definitely not a default that may set it off during another meetings.

So a policy that sets some by default but allows them to turn it off. Those that manage calendars well and know their day don't want alarms while others need them.

I would think an even better thing would be the ability to set some be default and then even prompt the user by opening the dialog (new users) to verify and modify as they wish.

4Mat Newman

07/04/2012 19:45:24  How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

@3, Chris: Spot on mate, which is why in the Outlook migrations we've been doing I've been using the "Set initial value" so users get them turned on by default, and then show them where to turn them on and off.

Mat Newman IBM Champion

5Kirsty Whetham  07/06/2012 9:38:03  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

Hi Mat

With the "Send mail notification with subject" setting enabled, am I right in thinking the Notes client needs to be running for the email to trigger?

And does this need become redundant when Traveler is being used?

GREAT to see you for a beer at LotusBeer night last week. Hope you didn't freeze in the mountains.

6Mat Newman

07/06/2012 10:22:21  How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

@5, Kirsty; You too mate! and yes, it was brass monkey weather up there ;-)

The Notes client *does not* have to be running, the Domino server does the work for you, and will send the email message at the specified time.

If you're using Traveler, then yes, all of your appointments and alarms should be synched down to your mobile device. But in the case where Traveler is not in use, eg: an organisation that isn't BYOD or not providing users the ability to synch with their corporate account, then sending a reminder email to a personal address that your device does synch with can be useful.

Mat Newman IBM Champion

7Ingo Weidinger  07/06/2012 20:28:07  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

Are you sure, the Domino Server will send the mail?? What kind of task should do that?

On our Servers, that does not work! The E-Mail is triggered, when a connection is made wirth Notes Client!

8Mat Newman

07/08/2012 8:52:05  How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

@7, Ingo: To be honest, I don't know which task does it. I know it works for me.

I'll investigate and get back to you.

Mat Newman IBM Champion

9chris leg  06/01/2013 2:07:36  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

Several years after, this feature basic does not work.

{ Link }

or keep pc under the arm....

10Jon  06/06/2013 8:25:42  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

Even though the default setting includes a default sound, that does not set up the default reminder to play a sound. I still have to manually set a sound to play for each alarm set, or it does not play. It seems like there should be some way to get the default sound to default play. Anyone?

11Mat Newman

06/06/2013 10:22:30  How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

@10, Jon: Check your Notes.ini file for the entry "Meeting Alert Sound". whatever is in there is the default sound for Calendar alarms. Eg: "Meeting Alert Sound=wookie.wav". HTH.

Mat Newman IBM Champion

12Ken Brown  06/20/2013 0:55:07  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

Need some help! I was playing with my date/time on my workstation and set my date to the future. Many alarms went off and I closed all of them. I reset my time to the right day and now none of my alarms are going off. Can I get them reset?

13Nigel Roese  08/29/2013 18:23:05  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

I have it all set up as per the above. But find that the on-screen notification box that pops up only does so sometimes (maybe when Lotus is in focus in Windows?).

Frequently I am busy on other screens, e.g. Firefox or virtual machines. Someone uses Sametime to message me (if I'm lucky): "Our meeting is just starting!". This DOES pop over other windows.

When I wonder what went wrong with the alarm, I find the notification nestling among the windows - can see it for example, by going to the lower taskbar (Win7) and clicking on the Orange Lotus icon. Fat lot of good it is doing there!

14Nigel Roese  08/29/2013 18:28:43  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

...so is there a setting that can force the Calendar notification to pop up OVER everything else?

15Robert  11/28/2014 3:48:20  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

You forgot one little thing here: Usually the majority of your calendar entries are created by others. But obviously only the creator of the calendar entry can do notification settings. Thus with more than 80% percent of my entries all the funny boxes and dialogues you describe simply DO NOT EXIST. What braindead jerk invented this???? Is there some funny, selfexplanatory shortcut like Ctrl+F11+ü to get around this? Why do some people actually love a very low standard and insecure software like Outlook? Because Lotus Notes manages to be worse in every respect.

16Rich S  08/04/2015 11:01:44  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

Even though the default setting includes a default sound, that does not set up the default reminder to play a sound. I still have to manually set a sound to play for each alarm set, or it does not play. Is there a way to get the default sound to play without manually having to set it for each appointment/meeting/etc.?

17Tim Rainier  10/01/2015 6:31:29  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

I can confirm that with 8.5 and 9.x, the email client has to be open for the "Send email notification with subject" feature to work on a Reminder.

I used this feature to fire off reminders to our management group when certain people were going to be out of the office that day.

We did various tests to prove this feature does not function if your Notes client is not running and running Traveler does not help

It's very unfortunate.

18donald  10/08/2015 19:56:22  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

how do we enable alarms on phones (traveler) so as when one is out of the office he still gets the notifications automatically

19Harish  05/19/2016 22:39:41  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

Thanks a lot !!!

20Cheryl  12/08/2016 8:29:38  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

Mat... Is there a limit to the number of minutes you can snooze a Reminder? Seems like if you snooze more than 1000 min, to push a few days, the reminder doesn't come back up. Thoughts?

21Jerome  05/04/2017 23:22:36  
How to automatically enable Alarms for new Calendar entries in Lotus Notes - Plus 2 HUGE Calendar Tips

hello Mat, In regard to Tim Rainiers post on 10/01/2015. Can you tell me if there has been a fix or a patch for the ability to send reminder notifications by e-mail automatically even if the user is not logged into the client. This feature seemed to work before we switched from 6.5 to ver 8.5?

Mat Newman

THE Lotus Notes Guy. Productivity Guru. Social Evangelist. IBM Champion for IBM Collaboration Solutions, 2011/2012/2013. IBMer. Views are my own.

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