Roaming on 2nd Workstation Doesn't Work with Cannot Find Roaming Server When Already on the Machine Before

Mindwatering Incorporated

Author: Tripp W Black

Created: 08/26/2011 at 08:35 PM


Using Lotus Notes
Issue Troubleshooting

User already has 2 workstation (e.g. main workstation and laptop). User accepts Roaming and chooses "this" desktop to roam. When user returns to 2nd machine, there is an error as the roaming files are brought down to replace the current ones.
The error is that the "roaming server is not available" or more specifically:
Notes cannot enable roaming at this time as your roaming server is unavailable: <name of server>. Do you want to continue and use your local databases? Continue? If you select "No", Notes will exit

The cause is that local DNS is not returning the common name of the server, and the local Contacts application (names.nsf) that would normally have the connection document has been renamed names.000 and the new one isn't down yet, so it cannot find the server via it's common name. The is particularly an issue with remote users outside the corporate network.

Actually several local applications have already been renamed: names.000, bookmark.000, localfeedcontent.000, and user.000 (

Solution A:
Update DNS so that the common name of the server resolves.

Solution B:
Add temporarily to hosts file, the IP and common name of the server.
e.g. joshua2

Solution C:
Sometimes in Vista and it seems always in Windows 7, having a computer wide domain suffix (e.g. is no longer enough. You have to have a network connection specific domain suffix in order for DNS to work. It appears that local DNS can be broken. In this case, you have to do Solution B above instead.

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