Lotus has taken a leaf out of Novell's book, in integrating its products with Microsoft software. The company is to adapt Domino in its forthcoming version 5.0 so that the product can work with Microsoft Internet Information Server (IIS). Lotus is seeking Microsoft BackOffice certification for the product so it can be bolted on to an IIS installation. This will allow IIS users to continue with the product as a Web server, while running Notes or Domino as a groupware system on top. It will be enabled by bypassing Lotus' own Domino Go server. The company has not said when BackOffice certification is likely to happen. Version 5.0 of Notes and Domino are scheduled to appear in the first half of this year. The plan mimics Novell's strategy with NDS for NT, which lets network administrators use Novell's directory on an NT installation. NDS for NT pre-empts Microsoft's own directory services, the Active Directory, due in NT 5.0. The move was hailed as a "smart move" by Ashim Pal, senior consultant at research firm Meta Group. He said it would mainly benefit companies that use Domino already but want to run IIS as well. - In a separate development, Lotus is poised to unveil integration with the Psion PDA later this month. According to Simon East, vice president of products at Psion Software, there may be a Notes client for the Psion 5 "by the middle of the year". In the interim, the companies are to announce closer integration between the Psion's calendaring and scheduling functions and the Notes client, as well as the possible integration of the Psion's contacts database. "The plans have not been finalised yet, and we are still debating what to announce," said East. There is a possibility of "generic synchronisation with the Notes database," he added. However, Pal was adamant there is "no way" Psion would develop a Notes client for the machine. "It might include a bit more intelligence into the synchronisation (between the PDA and Notes) but in the long-term, Windows CE will dominate, and Psion is going to be agnostic," he said.
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