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Working with Views outside of .nsfs

Ok, so it’s been a long time coming.  Been promised and “in the pipeline” for a long time.  Well with Domino 9.0.1. Feature Pack 8 we can now move views outside of .nsfs.

Why would you want to do this?  Well the two primary reasons:

1.  For potential performance improvements on large databases.  This is a simple statement that assumes much.  Generally it assumes you can re-point the views (to another dedicated physical disk, or dedicated LUN), though there would generally be performance improvements even if you didn’t.  There may be many other reasons why your database/application isn’t working as well as it should.  Contact us and we can set up a review for you.

2. To improve back up speeds on weekly full backups.

I say weekly backups explicitly here, as unless you’ve a really small footprint of disk, (or have some other compelling reason) you should be ONLY backing up archive based transaction logs, every day.  Please again contact us if you are not.  It is relatively straight forward to implement and it will improve the amount of time backups take (As well as allowing point in time recovery).

So how do you implement views outside of indexes?

There’s a couple of simple prerequistes. Install Domino 9.0.1 Feature Pack 8 (if it’s a Traveler server or Verse on premise server note the known issues), and make sure the ODS is up to date (ODS52).

Beyond that there’s only two real steps to implement:

1. Add the following notes.ini settings
NIFNSFEnable=1 is essential

NIFBasePath=path is optional (This is where the view files will be stored, by default it’s similar to full text indexes, i.e. the same location as the .nsf, but I changed it to NIFBasePath=d:\views\ for the sake of testing the setting).

(if you want to set the views to go outside ALL files by default then you can set Create_NIFNSF_Databases=1).

Then restart the server.

2. You can then apply it by issuing

load compact -c -nifnsf on path

So in practice

load compact -c -nifnsf on mail\cmccarth.nsf

Physical Size Before:

Physical Size After:

The .ndx file is created on the drive/view specified:

If you right click and manage views in the admin client, it looks exactly the same as before.  The performance on my mailfile was perfect before, and it’s perfect now, so it’s probably not the ultimate test.  (i.e. a huge database that currently has performance issues would be good to test with). But it works fine and is easy to implement.

To undo it’s just

load compact -c -nifnsf off mail\cmccarth.nsf

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