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Sat Jan 05, 2008 4:48 am
PostPost subject: Pathfinder on Vista? XP? Win2000? Server'03? oh my! Reply with quote
AXIA_milos
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Joined: 25 May 2007
Posts: 279
Location: San Luis Obispo, CA

We recommend that PathfinderPC Server be run on Windows Server 2000 or 2003. While PathfinderPC Server will run under Windows 2000, XP, 2000 Server, and 2003 Server, there are some important limitations that need to be considered when choosing an operating system for PathfinderPC Server. All Microsoft workstation operating systems such as Windows 2000 and Windows XP have a limit as to the number of simultaneous incoming connections they will accept. Therefore, if you are going to have more than 10 clients (PathfinderPC Client, PathfinderPC Mini) accessing the PathfinderPC Server application at the same time, you must use a Server operating system such as Windows 2000 Server or Windows 2003 Server.

In addition, Microsoft XP Service Pack 2 added a security feature that limits the number of outgoing connections to devices that can occur in any short period of time. This means in an Axia environment, if the server application needs to connect to more than 6 Axia devices on the network, and there is any chance that those devices might not be reachable, XP should not be used for the PathfinderPC Server operating system. If the devices are not present and multiple connection attempts occur, a watchdog in XP is triggered that causes XP to minimize all network traffic until the machine is rebooted. This was an attempt by Microsoft to detect and mitigate wormlike activity.

Due to these restrictions, it is highly recommended that either Microsoft 2000 Server or Microsoft 2003 Server is used as the host operating system for PathfinderPC Server. It is also recommended that the machine have at least 512 MBytes of RAM and at least a 1 Ghz P4 processor.

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Thu Jan 17, 2008 7:20 pm
PostPost subject: Re: Pathfinder on Vista? XP? Win2000? Server'03? oh my! Reply with quote
Oleg_axia
Axia Team


Joined: 01 Oct 2007
Posts: 4
Location: Riga, Latvia

AXIA_milos wrote:
All Microsoft workstation operating systems such as Windows 2000 and Windows XP have a limit as to the number of simultaneous incoming connections they will accept.


Not entirely true. The connection limit is related to MS services only, like IIS, File and Printer sharing, named pipes, etc. The restriction doesn't apply to normal TCP incoming connections.

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Fri Jan 18, 2008 3:43 am
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DanBays
Axia Team


Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 28
Location: Cleveland

Quote:

Not entirely true. The connection limit is related to MS services only, like IIS, File and Printer sharing, named pipes, etc. The restriction doesn't apply to normal TCP incoming connections.


While we have learned that Oleg is correct about this. XP does allow more than 10 incoming TCP connections that are not Microsoft service related, there is another potential side to this.

Quoted from Microsoft:
Quote:

Per development: The connection limit refers to the number of redirector-based connections and is enforced for any file, print, named pipe, or mail slot session. The TCP connection limit is not enforced, but it may be bound by legal agreement to not permit more than 10 clients.



This leads us to believe using XP in such a manner may be a violation of your license. Also the outgoing connection count is an issue for larger networks.


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Sat Jan 19, 2008 5:32 am
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dremund



Joined: 04 Sep 2007
Posts: 15
Location: USA

Must this computer be dedicated, or can it be used for other things too?
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Mon Jan 21, 2008 8:36 pm
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tyler



Joined: 06 Jun 2007
Posts: 4
Location: Saskatoon Saskatchewan

I've seen it installed on dedicated machines, news servers, automation servers, etc. It's probably best to have it on a machine that isn't used by staff so you're not having service interruptions due to reboots, etc. If it's a relatively small installation I see no problem with it on a shared machine.
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Mon Jan 21, 2008 9:15 pm
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DanBays
Axia Team


Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 28
Location: Cleveland

Obviously the safest bet is to install it on a dedicated machine. However, the answer to this question really depends on what you are using PathfinderPCServer for. We have customers that are using it for just some basic routing, and then we have customers that have massive scripts and huge aspects of their internal infrastructure and automation built around Pathfinder. In the latter case, definitely steer towards a dedicated PC. In the earlier case you may be able to get away with other applications running on the same pc.

One thing to note is that at this point in time, PathfinderPCServer does not run as a service but as a desktop application. Therefore, if it is at all critical to your operation, it should be running on a machine that the general riffraff does not normally use so that they do not accidentally shut the application down. Also if the other applications use significant CPU resources, a Pathfinder function might be delayed or perform sluggishly.

Our recommendation if possible though is to run the server application on a dedicated machine. This will be more stable and responsive. Obviously the client application can be run on any machines in your building along with everyday desktop work. That is what it is designer for.


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Tue Jul 15, 2008 7:32 am
PostPost subject: Pathfinder on Windows Server 2008? Reply with quote
Andrew_KOOP



Joined: 23 Aug 2007
Posts: 47
Location: Austin, TX

Are there any issues running Pathfinder on Windows Server 2008?

Thanks,
-Andrew

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Wed Jul 16, 2008 7:45 am
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DanBays
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Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 28
Location: Cleveland

Andrew,
Not that we know of, but we have not had the luxury of testing it yet. We have Server 2008 on the premises, and we have a new machine coming in this week, so we'll try to load it up and run some tests. Stand-by for more information.

Thanks


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Wed Jul 16, 2008 8:37 am
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Andrew_KOOP



Joined: 23 Aug 2007
Posts: 47
Location: Austin, TX

Thanks! And by the way... the new panel features look pretty neat.
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Tue Feb 23, 2010 2:09 am
PostPost subject: Will Pathfinder eventually work for Vista? Windows 7? Reply with quote
y not



Joined: 18 Jul 2008
Posts: 3
Location: Saskatoon

Will Pathfinder and Pro work with Vista? Windows 7? Is there a way to make it work with these OS. Will there be eventual support for these OS?

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Tue Feb 23, 2010 2:20 am
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DanBays
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Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 28
Location: Cleveland

The Pathfinder applications will run on Win 2008, Vista, and Win 7. However, Server, Client, and Mini all need one tweak. After you install them on one of these operating systems, go to the executable file in Program Files\PathfinderServer or Program Files\PathfinderPC or Program Files\PathfinderMini. Then Right Click on the executable and click properties. Select Compatibility and check on the Run As Administrator. This will allow them to work properly under these operating systems.

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Tue Feb 01, 2011 11:42 pm
PostPost subject: Are CAL's needed? Reply with quote
David



Joined: 06 Jan 2011
Posts: 19
Location: Park Rapids, Minnesota

I will have over 10 axia devices, so I presume I should use Windows Server 2000 or 2003 according to your notes. Do I need Client Access Licenses and if so, how many? I only need to run the pathfinder client application on 5 or fewer computers. I would assume since your software is not a Microsoft product, then I wouldn't need CALs.

Could I get away with XP or not? What about Vista or 7 do they have the same limitations as XP?

Dave

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Wed Feb 02, 2011 8:14 am
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DanBays
Axia Team


Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 28
Location: Cleveland

David,

We now also recomment Windows Server 2008. You will have a hard time pucrhasing 2000 or 2003. Technically the way the Microsoft license is worded you will need Cals. Depending on whether you use the device or user model and the number of users/connections the cals will be different. However, almost any copy of Windows Server will come with 5 cals so you should be ok.

You may be able to get away with xp/Vista/7 but you have to be aware of the potential pitfalls. If your client connection count will not be greater than 10, then you should be in compliance with the Microsoft client licensing. The only catch is that you need to be aware of the fact that if the computer looses connectivity with numerous pieces of the Axia equipment at the same time, the outbound TCP connection count limit may cause a problem forcing you to reboot to get things working again. You will only know this has happened by checking in the system log and noticing that PathfinderServer is connecting and disconnecting repeatedly. That is why we do not recommend it unless PathfinderServer is not serving a mission critical role in the installation


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Wed Feb 02, 2011 11:00 pm
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David



Joined: 06 Jan 2011
Posts: 19
Location: Park Rapids, Minnesota

That makes sense now. So the count limit of 6 is for outgoing failed TCP connections?

I will be using it only to create buttons to change paths on axia devices and maybe to route multiple path changes on incoming EAS messages. I don't foresee communications issues with multiple axia devices unless the core switch fails. If that fails I'm momentarily dead until I change it out to a backup switch anyhow. XP may be worth the try first and if problems arise, migrate to a server platform.

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Wed Feb 02, 2011 11:23 pm
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DanBays
Axia Team


Joined: 05 Sep 2007
Posts: 28
Location: Cleveland

It is aproximately 6 though the exact number is a little nebulous. Here is the actual story with what is going on. Pathfinder Server spins up connections to all of the equipment in its database as fast as it can when it starts up. The workstation operating systems (xp, Vista, Win7) have no problems with this. But if the equipment is not available, the operating system sees a bunch of failed attaempts to connect to ip addresses that do not exist. It then decides it must be a worm fishing for connections and slows the TCP stack to a crawl to slow down the spread. You then have to reboot to fix the issue. So as long as your equipment is available, there is not a problem.

But if you do have an outage such as a core switch or edge switch with lots of devices or bad nic connection on the Pathfinder server, we do not want you to have to remember that once the panic is over and the outage is fixed that - ohh yes you also will need to reboot the Pathfinder Server. We would prefer that it just picks up everything as it comes back online seemlessly as it will do with the server operating system.

Additionally the server operating system is optimized to do the kinds of things we are doing with PathfinderServer and the workstation OS is not.

Having said that, we do lots of R&D with Pathfinder on workstation systems and it works just fine. We just have to keep these issues in mind and in a real world scenario we do not want you to have to do that.

I would recommend perhaps creating a stack event that monitors for equipment outages and sends you an email. That will help you to know if this problem might be taking place. There are qualifiers which can be acted upon if Pathfinder cannot talk to the equipment. Support can help you with this if you have questions.


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