As the countdown continues, John Roling profiles the Notes/Domino 8.5 release in Intranet Journal:

The Domino server is really what gets the bulk of the improvements in the 8.5 release. One that may have some of the biggest impact is DAOS or Domino Attachment Object Storage.

Simply put, DAOS is a way for your Domino server to store attachments to your file system instead of inside a Notes database itself. When DAOS is enabled, attachments are removed from the database and placed in a folder on the server. The server creates internal pointers so a user still sees the attachment but doesn't realize it's not really in the database. ...

If you extrapolate this over your entire user base, the space savings on your server could be huge. And it doesn't stop there, you can enable document compression on the server, and IBM says you can see up to 30% disk space savings as well. So it seems with these two features alone, you'll get immediate return on your upgrade investment.
I don't want to over-sell DAOS and sell-short on all the other great features, but this is one immediate way to get instant payback for the upgrade.  Then you get the benefit of hundreds of other new features, like the Configuration Tuner, ID file management improvements, and many, many others.

Link: Intranet Journal: Lotus Notes and Domino 8.5 On the Way >

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