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How to Delay Sending an Email Using Lotus Notes

Updated July 20, 2017

In Lotus Notes, it is not possible to write an e-mail and then schedule it to be sent at a specific time in the future. When you compose an e-mail and hit the "Send" button, the email is stored in an "Outgoing Mail" database on your computer. When a connection to a Lotus Notes server is available, the email is delivered to the server as part of the normal Lotus Notes replication process. While e-mail delivery can't be scheduled for a specific time, there are two ways to delay delivery of an e-mail to the Lotus Notes server.

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  1. Compose your mail as you usually do and click the "Save To Drafts" button instead of clicking the "Send" button. This will save your mail in the "Drafts" folder of your Lotus Notes e-mail database. Notes will not put the email in the "Outgoing Mail" file for delivery.

  2. When you are ready to send the mail, open your Lotus Notes e-mail file, then click the "Drafts" folder in the left side navigation pane. The main window pane will list all the email you have saved as drafts.

  3. Double click on the email in the main window pane to open it and click the "Send" button. This will move your e-mail from the "Drafts" folder of your Lotus Notes e-mail file to the "Outgoing Mail" database. The mail will then be sent the next time Lotus Notes can connect to a server.

  4. Create a local copy of your Lotus Notes e-mail file. Open your Lotus Notes workspace, find your mail file then right click on the file. In the pop up menu, select "Replica" then click on "New Replica." Fill out the new replica dialogue box to specify a location on your computer for your local mail file.

  5. Create a new "Location" document for offline mode. Open your Lotus Notes "Contacts," click on "Advanced" and then click on "Connections." Click the "New" button and then click on "Location" to create a new "Location" document and open it in the "Location" document editor. Click in the "Location Type" field and select "No Connection." Fill out the name field with a name for the new "Location" document; for example, "Offline." In the "Mail" tab of the "Location" document editor, click the "Mail File Location" field and select "Local." In the "Mail File" field, select a location on your computer for the local Lotus Notes e-mail file. Usually the default location suggested by Lotus Notes is fine.

  6. Switch to the "Location" document you just created by clicking the location document field in the lower right corner of your main Lotus Notes window. The name of your new offline mode location will appear in the pop up list. Select your offline mode location document.

  7. Compose your e-mail as usual. When working with a "Location" document that has "No connection," your e-mail will be held in the "Outgoing E-Mail" database file and will not be delivered to a Lotus Notes server. It will be held in the "Outgoing E-Mail" database until you switch to a location that has a server connection.

  8. Tip

    When you start Lotus Notes, you can select a location document on the dialogue box that prompts you for your password. This enables you to start Lotus Notes using a "No Connection" document.


    When using a "Location" document that has "No Connection" for its connection type. you can only open Lotus Notes databases that are stored on your computer. You will need to make local replicas of any Lotus Notes databases you want to work with while using a "Location" that has "No Connection."

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About the Author

Vince Sparlow has been writing technical white papers, user manuals and academic papers since 1987. His work has appeared in Electronic Commerce Research journal and New Security Paradigms journal. He has also been producing radio shows and podcasts since 2003. Sparlow holds a Bachelor of Science in computer science from Texas A&M University

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