Setting up Portfolio Server

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Manual: v5 - pages 220-235, v6 - pages 136-140, v7 - separate manual for Server/SQL

Although this article is illustrated with v5 on Win 2k it still holds good for v6/v7.

Set up

For this FAQ, we'll assume you've installed and registered at least one Portfolio client, either on the same computer as the one you will use for Portfolio Server or one that is able to access the Server's computer across the network. In addition you should have installed Portfolio Server. If you have existing Catalogues you wish to server via Server, move them to the "\Catalogs\" folder where Server has been installed. note that you may well need to update the paths to images and other assets (always remember the issue access permissions as well as just getting the actual path correct).

Before you start the procedure below, I strongly advise you to have read the article on Server & IPs. You will need to know the IP of the computer hosting server (even if the client is on the same computer).

When you're ready, in the client select the "File -> Administer Servers..." menu. You will get this dialog:

Ignore the "Administer..." button for now. Although enabled, it shouldn't be as it does nothing until a server has been created. Click the "Add Server..." button, and you get this dialog:

Don't worry if this catches you by surprise - just put in anything simple such as "admin" for now as you can change the password later. Click OK. In the next dialog you set the new server's details. The name can be something you chose though the IP must correct (see above for more about IPs).

Click OK, and there's your first server:

Now you can click the "Administer..." button, and enter the password you set up in step 2 above:

The new dialog that opens allows you to create new Catalogues or administer existing ones. If you've put existing Catalogues in the "\Catalogs\" folder (described above) they will appear in the list without further action on your part. However, before you can serve anything you need to register the Server software.

Click the "Serialize..." button. On the "Serial Codes" dialog, click the "Add..." button. On the "Add Serial Code" dialog add the Server (not Client) code from the back of your paper manual, click "OK". The code appears - in plain text form - in the list box of the "Serial Codes" dialog. Why such a big list? Don't forget that your basic Server licence only allows for 5 concurrent accesses - not true since v6. If you need more users to have access you'll need to contact your Extensis sales representative for additional Server licences (for more on licences, see here). In v6 the licence is a once-only licence regardless of the number of users. The only licence you may have to add in v6 is that for SQL Connect if you use that optional module to allow SQL based catalogues.

Now you've registered the server you can create Catalogues ("New..." button), then Serve ("Serve..." button) or "Unserve ("Unserve..." button) them and/or existing Catalogues - also see the manual. In the image below a catalogue has actually been served and a user is logged on. The user name and/or the IP of the computer they are using is shown for each user logged on.

There are some other things you can do. You can log off any user by selecting their entry in the left-hand pane and clicking "Log Off User" - also see the manual. Remember I said you could change the admin password? Use the "Set Password..." button and also see the manual.

Lastly, the "Serve SQL..." button is only relevant if you are going to be setting up SQL Catalogues using SQL Connect, which is adequately described in the manual. One small point to note; although the SQL Catalogues are set up and served from subsidiary dialogs of the "Portfolio Server Administration" dialog, you serialise both Server SQL Connect via the same Serialize..." button and dialog found on the "Portfolio Server Administration" dialog.

Portfolio Server will install and run a fully functioning demo for 30 days. After 30 days it continues to serve whatever is currently served but no alterations can be made as when you try to administer the server you are asked if you wish to serialise the application. If you click 'Yes' you are taken directly to the serialization screen (as shown earlier in this article). After adding the serial code you may find you need to close and re-start the client before the code is properly recognised.


Paths in client/Server configurations

It cannot be overstressed, all paths used must be resolvable ('see-able' in lay terms from all clients and the server) - an exception being with CD/DVD. There are several implications falling from this. The account used by the clients must be able to see every stored location and have read/write permissions - write is needed if that user is going to edit files.

Shares need not be to the root of volumes as long as the share name/path resolves similarly for all users

Windows OS
Don't use simple letter shares but use proper UNC names that resolve the same for all users.

Counter-intuitive as it may be for Mac-addicts you will need to use SMB shares for your Portfolio locations - even if your set-up is all Mac. The need arises due to limitations in Mac OS's AppleTalk protocol, whereby it can't report the computer name in the path but this is needed when you have the Portfolio Server and the catalogued files on the same servername address. To catalogue files (and add FS/AS watched folders) using a network address, the files must be available to the Portfolio Server over a network mount. However AFP cannot mount "localhost", one of it's fun limitations. Thus even if your server is Mac, and your clients are Mac, connecting to the network locations over AFP, the server itself has to connect to itself over SMB in order for AutoSync to function.

Around OS 10.3.5/.6 AFP was updated to allow provision of a machine name in the path. If using an OS X version earlier than this both client and server mounts must be SMB. After this it's only the Server 'self' shares that need to be SMB. It is less effective than a AFP mount but Extensis are working on a solution to get around this Apple/MacOS limitation (probably not in v7 though).

How to point AutoSync to files on the same machine running Portfolio Server
1. In the Finder, choose Connect to Server, in the Go menu.
2. Enter "smb://localhost" or "smb://" for the Server Address and click Connect.

Served Folder Sync & Server Auto Sync

In essence these are the same. In FS the client(s) do the monitoring, in AS the server does it - though there are a few configuration issues. Adding several 'top level' root watched folders will cause the CPU usage to rise much more dramatically than if you have just a single root with all your files in subfolders below that. When using Folder/AutoSync, it is best to keep it to adding just a single folder with all your files/folders below that for best performance. So, if using AS, turn off all the client FS. This is an annoying task as it is set per user, per client with no central configuration.

Again, Extensis are aware this is inelegant and I'd expect forthcoming versions to have better centralised control of FS settings. With FS, again you can set it so that only a one client (which needs to remain logged on) uses FS. In AS or FS it only needs one component to scan and update the catalogue's Folder View.

The Server Configuration file (v7)

In v7, the Portfolio Server's /Portfolio Server Files/ lives a 'configuration.txt' file which allows you to modify how a number of aspects of the Server application' function. All the options listed show an example though in all cases the examples are commented out. In each case it is noted whether the change requires a re-start. The sections are further described below (and in the Server manual pages 27-29).

Windows 'Trusted' Authentication
# AllowWindowsAuthentication
# - Setting this flag to "yes" or "true" will allow trusted connections to SQL Server.
# - Service restart required after change: No
#AllowWindowsAuthentication = yes

See the Server manual page 27 for more detail.

Listening IP
# ListenerIP
# - The IP address in the form x.x.x.x on which the server should listen. If this is not
# defined, the server will listen on all IP address on the machine.
# - Service restart required after change: Yes
#ListenerIP =

Self-explanatory in the above notes!

Listening Port
# ListenerPort
# - The IP port on which the server should listen. If this is not defined, the server will
# use its default port (2903 for Portfolio and 2666 for Suitcase).
# - Service restart required after change: Yes
#ListenerPort = 2904

Undocumented [sic] is the fact that if you alter this port allocation, all you're clients accessing the (re-started) server need to have the new port number added to the server IP. so if the server is IP and you alter the listener port to It is to be presumed that altering the listener port means you can't use machine name for IP resolution as I don't believe you can append a port number to a name as in PortServ:2904. True?

Server Logging
# LogCategories
# - Specify which server behaviors will be logged. Multiple flags my be included, separated by
# commas. Logging defaults to include startup, shutdown and error messages.
# PERFORMANCE - log select performance metrics
# CONNECTION - log all incoming connections
# REQUEST - log all incoming requests
# DB_DATALAYER - log operations in the data layer
# DB_REMOTESTORE - log operations in the remote file store
# DB_SQLSTORE - log SQL operations
# DB_CTREESTORE - log CTree operations
# DB_QUERY - log actual SQL queries submitted to the DB engine
# DB_DATAMANAGER - log data manager operations
# GENERAL_DEBUG - log misc. debugging info (very verbose)
# AUTO_SYNC - log AutoSync operations
# - Service restart required after change: Yes

Windows users note that the logs go into the OS application event logs so be careful about using verbose logging types. Mac events are logged to a log file in the server [sic]app's /Portfolio Server Logs/ folder.

Question: Setting up Portfolio Server [FAQ00150.htm]
Last Update:- 01 June 2006

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