Speed up Lotus Notes 8.5.3 or IBM Notes 9 Social Edition under Windows 7/8/8.1 or Linux

Posted by Paul Braren on Jul 2 2014 in
  • Productivity
  • Windows
  • Yes, many folks still use Lotus Notes / IBM Notes. Myself included, several dozen hours a week actually. By default, Notes really doesn't take advantage of modern systems with lots of RAM. This article will help your Notes installation use your sytem's memory more effectively, which also means Notes will

    • start faster
    • behave more responsively, especially as you open up more and more tabs and Sametime windows.

    Windows 7 or Windows 8/8.1

    I tested this tweak with both Notes 8.5.3 and Notes 9. Interesting to note that Notes 8.5.3, which predates Windows 8 by years, won't even run on Windows 8 until you make this simple alteration.

    I first mentioned part of this procedure here, which for most folks involves simply closing Notes, then backing up then editing one line of this file. IBM then published a tip for Domino Designers that works well for regular Lotus/IBM Notes users as well.

    1) Close Notes
    2) Make a backup copy of the jvm.properties file:
    3) Edit the jvm.properties file, changing the first 3 lines from the default of:
    4) save your changes
    5) restart Notes

    That's it!

    The details of the edit:

    Sep 16 2013: Lotus Notes issue was simple to fix, the oldie but goodie JVM tuning trick gets 8.5.3 running fine on Windows 8.1 64 bit: How to Speed Up your Notes Standard (Eclipse-based) Client Jun 06 2011, where kchao states:

    Here’s how to increase your Eclipse memory usage: - Close your Notes client - Go to your Notes client installation directory of C:\…\Notes\framework\rcp\deploy and edit the jvm.properties file by changing: vmarg.Xmx=-Xmx256m to vmarg.Xmx=-Xmx512m or vmarg.Xmx=-Xmx1024m -Save and close the file then start your Notes Client. My Lotus notes client is fast like a rocket now.

    This same tweak dates back to 2008, seen here. It would seem that


    is as high as you can safely go (I’m on a beastly 16GB of RAM W520).

    Put in higher numbers, especially above 1500, and Notes takes forever to start, and strange things may happen, such as a “Failed to login CLFRJ0010E: Notes initialization failed” message.

    Jul 30 2013: IBM Domino Designer

    Intermittent memory issues and hangs in Domino Designer

    If you have at least 2 GB of physical RAM, close all instances of Notes, Domino Designer, and Domino Administrator, and then change the settings from the following default values:


    to these new values



    procedure documented at tar.gz here*

    1. Close lotus notes and zap it, to be sure it is closed indeed.

    2. Check for jvm.properties in the following path:

      • if Lotus Notes 8:/opt/IBM/lotus/notes/framework/rcp/deploy/.
      • if Lotus Notes 9:/opt/ibm/notes/framework/rcp/deploy/.
    3. Open jvm.properties and search for: vmarg.Xmx=-Xmx256m
      Replace it with vmarg.Xmx=-Xmx768m and save the file.

    4. Open Lotus Notes and feel the difference.
      Of course, you can give more memory if you want. The end!

    *I have not yet tested this tweak on Linux, but others have