“Lotus Notes you are Not Authorized to Access that Database” – [SOLVED]

admin | software technology | 4 minutes read | Modified on: 22-01-2020

The segment has provided reasons and solutions to fix the error “Lotus Notes you are not authorized to perform that operation or access the database”. Thus, if you are using Lotus Notes environment for work and facing an issue or getting error of unauthorization repeatedly, then you must read the article.

NSF files are database files of IBM Notes application that stands for Notes Storage Facility. It stores all the data folders of Lotus Notes user account such as emails, contacts, calendars etc. IBM Lotus Notes has an inbuilt feature i.e. ACL (Access Control List) that includes complete list of permissions associated with object. The administrator has authority to assign as well as provide accessibility to local users, then only users have right to open and manage NSF database file. If an unauthorized user trying to use a file, at that time Lotus Notes pass an error message “You are not authorized to access that operation/error”.


Note: Want a solution for accessing NSF database files into other accounts or apps? No worries, try Lotus Notes Converter, all-in-one solution for accessibility of IBM Notes NSF files. Grab this advance utility to move unlimited emails from Lotus Notes to Outlook/O365/Exchange/G Suite/Gmail and more. Download the tool now and access 20 files from NSF folder to required format/account.

However, it is clear that issue arise due to less authorization rights provided to user. Thus, this error message can be resolved by giving appropriate authority to file to user. In addition, second method is also available to eliminate local security from Lotus Notes NSF file.

Causes – Why “You are not authorized to perform that Operation” Error

As discussed earlier, the main reason of the error is lack of user authorization. In the write-up, we are going to know about various aspects.

  • User account moved to another Lotus Domino server.
  • The particular account of user not exists in Domino Directory.
  • Admin accounts not having accessibility to open mail file. There is also a situation when administrator account has right to manage few mailbox items due to permission settings.

Remove Security to Resolve Error “You are not authorized to access that database”

Applying a password make a file secure, also it is necessary to protect a file with strong password, as it will keep the associated information secure. If a user is opening file when administrator is not present, then an error messages might appear like this:


Error message displays when unauthorized user attempt to open NSF file. This creates trouble in absence of administrator. Therefore, to avoid the issue, it is important to remove applied password to open desired NSF file.

Solutions Discussed

Let us understand the solutions of the above causes:

Step 1. First, make sure that account is present in Domino Directory.

Step 2. Use the below steps if having Domino Server different from administrator account:

  • Create new admin profile in Domino Server where user account exists.
  • Apply Manager access for files in mailbox to new admin account by granting all the permissions openly.
  • Start migration of mailbox items by using newly created administrator account.

Step 3. Ensure that you granted correct access to administrator account.

  • First, check the admin account has ability to open mail file.
  • Make sure, if errors are occurring or not when directly opening mail file directory. In this case, provide Manager level rights to admin profile for mail file. Moreover, allow all permissions to solve error “Lotus Notes you are not authorized to access that database.”

Expert’s Solution to Fix “You are not authorized to access that database”

In order to access Lotus Notes NSF database files, make use of expert’s suggested NSF Converter solution. The application is simple and possesses easy GUI that is operable by both professional and home users. If NSF file is encrypted, then you can use Advance Settings of the software, remove the encryption and convert the same into multiple file types such as PST, PDF, MSG, EML, MBOX, O365, G Suite, Gmail, Exchange and more. The utility provides heaps of remarkable benefits that one can apply accordingly to get desired output. To understand more about the software process, download the free demo now that allows to access first 20 files from each folder of NSF free of cost.


IBM Notes is high in security due to which many organizations uses the application for email communication process. If the admin has not provided rights to users to open and manage NSF files, then Lotus Notes displays an error “Lotus Notes you are not authorized to access that database” or “you are not authorized to perform that operation”.  If somehow, a user not able to perform the process manually, then third party tool is available which will help in every way.