Richard Pajerski Software development and consulting

Notes client pegs one logical processor at 15%

by Richard Pajerski

Posted on Friday June 18, 2021 at 03:38PM in Technology

Having recently installed a Notes/Designer/Admin 12 client on Windows 8.1 Pro on an aging Intel i7 Quad-Core (with eight logical processors), I was surprised to see that after startup, Notes was consistently grabbing one logical processor and pegging it at around 15%.  Windows Task Manager showed that nlnotes.exe was the process and it wouldn't let go of that processor until Notes was closed:

Notes, Designer and Admin clients all worked fine and interaction with local- and server-based applications was normal.  Without giving it too much thought, I tried a few things like removing cache.ndk, stopping a couple Notes-related services and making sure the preference "Enable scheduled local agents" was disabled.

But none of that worked and strangely, Disk and Network utilization were both at 0%:

The client was set up in the normal way by connecting to a Domino server with an existing mail file on the server.  However, this workstation needed to use a Location that sends and receives mail from a POP3 server instead of Domino.  For that purpose I used an existing names.nsf that already had Account and Locations documents in place.  All of that connectivity worked and the mail flowed normally.

The next step was internet search but nothing obvious jumped out and most references to similar problems ended with Notes client crashes which I was not experiencing.

The Location document for this POP3 configuration kicks off replication and runs it every 10 minutes.  I noticed that after starting the client, there was a gap of a few seconds where the nlnotes.exe process was at 0% and didn't go up to 15% until replication started (and then stayed there).  Thinking the culprit was the Replicator, I disabled replication and restarted Notes... but nlnotes.exe was back to 15%!

But this time I could clearly see that process spiked when "Notes configuration settings have been refreshed" scrolled across the Status bar:

Based on that message and the fact that a POP3 configuration like this is not commonly used, I kept pursuing the Location document as the source of the problem.  And the problem was indeed there.

When you configure the Notes client for POP3 mail retrieval, only the "Mail" tab of the Location document needs to be filled out:

The "Servers" tab can remain empty -- and that was the problem!  At a minimum, the "Home/mail server" field MUST have some value in it to calm down the processor:

It doesn't matter if the server is down or the value entered isn't even a Domino server -- nlnotes.exe will report that the server is not responding but it leaves the processor alone after that:

Ok, problem solved, back to work.  :-)


Thanks a lot for sharing this useful information.

Posted by Amit Sharma on June 21, 2021 at 10:35 PM EDT #

Hi Amit -- You're welcome, glad you found this useful! This probably affects previous versions of the Notes client as well but I haven't taken the time to investigate.


Posted by Richard Pajerski on June 21, 2021 at 11:41 PM EDT #

Hey Richard,

I saw this once you posted it - now I had to try it out and it works like a charm!
Thank you for digging into it and sharing this very useful workaround!
I guess this is worth a case for HCL, right? ;-)

Posted by Oliver Busse on August 12, 2021 at 04:02 PM EDT #

Hi Oliver -- my pleasure, and good to hear this helped you, too! I hadn't considered opening a ticket with HCL but since the bug appears to be in the (proprietary) Notes client code, only they'd be able to fix it.

Thanks for your comment,

Posted by Richard Pajerski on August 12, 2021 at 04:58 PM EDT #

Thank you Richard for finding this solution! I was struggling with this for a few days and tried almost all the tricks you described, but not this final one :)

Posted by Michal on August 16, 2021 at 03:58 AM EDT #

Hello Richard,
it seems that you - like myself - are using Notes as a POP3 client with the local mail file. I guess not too many people use Notes client in this way.
So maybe you also came across a problem with automatic refreshing of an Inbox after replicator runs and fetches new e-mails via POP3. Automatic refreshing worked in this scenario even in version R5, but when I tried v10, v11 and now v12 - I have to refresh Inbox manually.
Maybe you've got it working somehow?

Kind regards,

Posted by Michal on August 16, 2021 at 11:07 AM EDT #

Hi Michal -- thanks for your comments and I'm pleased this post helped you, too!

Good question regarding refreshing the Inbox -- I do have the same problem and yes, it's been there for a long time. A fundamental issue is that there's no client-side hook into the "You have new mail" notification (as far as I know). An "After new mail has arrived" agent won't work for at least two reasons: 1) that trigger is server-based only and 2) there's no practical way to directly refresh the UI from such an agent anyway (this also rules out a locally-scheduled agent).

Potential avenues to explore would be a Notes plugin or some client-side Javascript to refresh the Inbox say every 30 seconds.


Posted by Richard Pajerski on August 16, 2021 at 01:49 PM EDT #

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