Installing Lotus Notes 8.5 on Kubuntu / Debian Linux KDE

I have recently switched from employer in search of new opportunities, a new challenge and more tech-savy colleagues. After just 2 days I can say that I have found at least the latter two. Although I never expected to find a challenge in the mail system used, namely IBM Lotus Notes.

After leaving my previous employer I had hoped to leave my windows days behind for I was bound to the demonic Windows due to proprietary applications. I have adopted Kubuntu as my new Ambrosium.

Yet the funniest thing happened, I have to use Lotus Notus. Another windows only application by IBM.

As you can imagine I was mortally terrified when I learned no Linux client was there and no IMAP connection could be made (I have been told it is next to impossible with Notes). But then I found the IBM Lotus Notes 8.5 Open Beta 2 for Linux client (IBM Id needed but can be created for free during the process). This 460mb download is almost all that is needed to get it working.

Here are the steps that I have done to install Notes,

  1. Download the application from the link given in the previous paragraph, choose the Debian package
  2. Untar the downloaded file tar -xvvf <filename><
  3. Install the notes debian package as rootsudo dpkg -i ibm_lotus_notes-8.5.i586.deb
  4. In order to run the application it needs several Gnome packages. If you try to run the application but it won’t start, then you are missing some. To find out which, start the application from Konsole and it will display what it misses. The binary can be found in /opt/ibm/notes. I missed the libgnomeprint2.2-0 and libgnomeprintui2.2-0 packages
  5. The installation has now created a folder lotus in your home folder as the user root. Since we will be starting the Lotus application with our own user we need to give it back from root to ourselves. Thus you execute chown -R <youruser>:<youruser> /home/<youruser>/lotus
  6. Run it and configure it just like you would do with the windows version

After figuring out the steps above I was seriously relieved that I could stop reading my mail over a Remote Desktop connection and enjoy all that Kubuntu has to give to me.