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Support FAQ: Moving Visual KPI to a New Server

Visual KPI LogoBack again with a tip for our current users. We’ve heard this request fairly often so here’s a post detailing the migration steps for everyone’s benefit.

Keep the following in mind:

  • The steps are easy, but the order is critical.
  • The prerequisites are fundamental and you would not believe how many people ignore them when preparing for a migration. They are not optional. Even though Visual KPI is a modern and quick-to-deploy application, it is still an enterprise-class piece of software and should be treated as such.

For this post, we will assume the typical case, where SQL Server and Visual KPI are on different physical machines. We will also assume that the database and Visual KPI Instance name are identical and are named “InstanceName” for this post.  Just replace “InstanceName” with the name of your instance and you will be good to go. This migration guide also works if you are using a local SQLExpress or other local SQL on the same machine as the Visual KPI web server.

Pre-migration checklist (don’t skip this):

  1. If your source system includes any Remote Context Services (RCS), STOP, and Contact us for help with this.
  2. Transpara only supports Domain-joined Servers for installations where SQL and the Visual KPI web server will reside on different machines. We support Workgroup Servers only for installations where SQL and the Visual KPI web server reside on the same machine.
  3. Start with a healthy Visual KPI instance on the source machine.  Check the Windows Event Log and correct any errors being thrown by the source Visual KPI instance before attempting the migration.
  4. Locate the installation media for Visual KPI Server Manager which matches the exact version of the source Visual KPI Server.
    1. Once migrated, you can do an upgrade-in-place of the working system. But first, it is essential to get an identical copy running without error.
  5. The Windows OS must be at least Windows Server 2008 R2 on both the source and target SQL and Visual KPI web server machines. However, you can have different OS versions on each machine.
  6. Target Visual KPI web server must have all Visual KPI prerequisites installed and tested (review prerequisites here).
  7. IIS must be configured to allow .NET 4.0 (or newer) to run on the target web server
  8. Both target SQL and target web servers are patched and up-to-date for their OS version
  9. The SQL software on the target machine is either the same as the source machine or newer.
    • Note: This is a SQL requirement, not a Visual KPI requirement.  SQL backups cannot be restored to older versions of SQL than the version on which they are created.
    • If your SQL environment doesn’t match these assumptions, Contact us for help with this.

Note: make sure you have the necessary permissions before you begin, as there will be frustration and perplexion in your future if you do not. Don’t take this for granted, as we often hear that “IT told me I had rights” when this was almost true, but not quite. Test your true rights by using SQL management studio to create a database called “test” and then delete this database.  If both of these steps occur without error, then you have sufficient rights on SQL Server. On the Visual KPI web server, ensure that you are a local Administrator.

Steps to Migrate Visual KPI to a new server:

Now that we have the pre-flight stuff out of the way, the actual migration should take no more than 10 minutes (plus some time to duplicate interfaces if you have lot of them):

  1. On the source SQL Server:
    1. Use SQL Server Backup to create a .BAK file. In our example, you will create “InstanceName.BAK” and containing the database “InstanceName”
    2. Copy the BAK file to the target SQL Server machine
  2. On the target SQL Server:
    1. Restore the database using SQL Restore function
    2. Now you have a database on the target SQL box called “InstanceName.”
    3. In SQL Management Studio, grant dbo rights on this database to the following logins:
      1. NT AUTHORITY\NETWORK SERVICE (if SQl and web are on same machine)
      2. YourDomainName\YourWebServerWindowsMachineName$ (if SQL and web are on different machines)
        1. Replace “YourDomainName” with, guess what?  Your actual domain name
        2. Replace YourWebServerWindowsMachineName with the NetBEUI name of the machine which is to run the Visual KPI web server.
  3. Run the Visual KPI Server Manager on the target Visual KPI machine and create a new website instance named “InstanceName”
    1. Uncheck the box to include demo data.
    2. When the database creation step arrives, choose a DB name of “InstanceName-deleteme” where InstanceName is your source system Visual KPI Instance Name.
    3. Keep all other selections named “InstanceName”
    4. Let the wizard run to completion
    5. Create all Interfaces to data sources  (OSIsoft PI System, Oracle, Weather JSON, Excel, etc.) with exactly the same names.
      1. For ODBC, OLEDB and other SQL query-based interfaces, copy the *.SQL fields that hold the Current Value, Historical Value, Trend and Historical Data (if present) data queries to their folders in the target Visual KPI machine, overwriting the default files created when the interfaces were installed on the target Visual KPI machine.
      2. For JSON, XML and other REST-based interfaces, copy the web.config from the source machine to the target machine, overwriting the files created when the interfaces were installed on the target Visual KPI machine.
    6. Modify connection strings in the 5 applications, change “DB=InstanceName-delete” me to “DB=InstanceName” in
      1. Website
      2. All Remote Context Services (Contact us for help)
      3. Cache Server
      4. Alert Server
      5. Status History Server (if present on source system)
  4. Delete the dummy database in the Target SQL Server machine named “VisualKPI-deleteme”
  5. You are done

Hope this helps.  We’ll be along with more tips in the coming weeks so let us know if there is something you would like us to write about.

Best,
Team Transpara

NBN Co Launches Groundbreaking Business Satellite Service Created, Designed and Managed by Speedcast

Transpara’s Visual KPI plays a key role as the real-time monitoring front-end of the solution for Speedcast and NBN operations, management, and partners.

NBN

Sydney, Australia, Nov 7, 2019 – (ABN Newswire) – Speedcast International Ltd (ASX:SDA.AX – News) (HAM:7SC.F – News) (OTCMKTS:SPPDF – News), the world’s most trusted provider of highly-reliable, fully-managed, remote communication and IT solutions, announced today that Australian government-owned infrastructure provider NBN Co is now delivering satellite services in collaboration with Speedcast to business and government users across regional and remote parts of the country.

NBN Co’s new Business Satellite Service (BSS) leverages an extensive network designed, built and managed by Speedcast Managed Services, with access to up to 58 beams from 10 gateways, two data centres, and a network operations centre powering the company’s new high-data internet and IoT service offerings.

Speedcast NBN Managed Services

Read the full press release at https://au.finance.yahoo.com/news/nbn-co-launches-groundbreaking-business-215600951.html.

See other customers who rely on Visual KPI every day at https://www.transpara.com/customers/.

OSIsoft PI World 2019 Video Interview: Transpara

OSIsoft just let us know they posted the following interview of Michael Saucier and Robert Hylton from Transpara. In the brief video from the OSIsoft PI World conference in San Francisco, they discuss Transpara’s partnership with OSIsoft, upcoming IoT and digital transformation technologies like OSIsoft EDS and OCS, and give a short demo of Visual KPI. Check it out…

Transpara and OSIsoft have been long-time partners (14 years and counting). Contact us if you would like to learn more.

Transpara’s IoT Edge Software Demo Featured at OSIsoft PI World 2019

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – April 11, 2019

Transpara’s Visual KPI software for real-time operations monitoring, KPIs, dashboards, and alerting was highlighted at the annual OSIsoft PI World conference. Chris Felts, an OSIsoft Senior Product Manager highlighted Transpara’s SmartEdge IoT software along with OSIsoft’s EDS (Edge Data Store) running on Raspberry PI.

The demo starts as a cold device is powered up, notifying Visual KPI of its existence on the network, auto-provisioning of the device and all of its related KPIs and tags, and automatically adding itself and its metrics to the Visual KPI hierarchy and dashboard. The device itself starts collecting data, and using EDS it can store data locally even when disconnected and will populate the central data storage once it is connected again.

You can see the full keynote at https://www.osisoft.com/Presentations/Gather–Data-connectivity-options-for-the-PI-System-and-the-Cloud/ or you can view just the Transpara portion of it below:

If you have questions at any time, about this or anything else we do, give us a shout!

Schneider Electric Partners with Transpara to Unlock Hidden Value from Industrial Assets

  • Helps customers in operationally intensive industries accelerate their digital transformation and IIoT initiatives
  • Real-time business insights and alerts drive measurable improvements to operational profitability
  • Strengthens Schneider Electric’s EcoStruxure IIoT-enabled process automation portfolio

 

BOSTON, Mass. – December 6, 2018 – Schneider Electric, the global specialist in the digital transformation of energy management and automation, has signed a worldwide OEM and distribution partnership agreement with Transpara, a developer of real-time monitoring, visualization and alerting software. Under the terms of the agreement, Schneider Electric will provide its customers with new Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) solutions that enhance data visibility, context and alerting so they can seize real-time control of their critical business risks, including risks to the efficiency, reliability, safety and profitability of their operations.

“As our customers continue their digital journeys, they seek to make their operating assets more intelligent, but aggregating, contextualizing and applying the data that comes from those assets and asset sets in a meaningful way continues to be a challenge,” said Chris Lyden, senior vice president, Process Automation, Schneider Electric. “Partnering with best-in-breed providers like Transpara helps us address these issues. Transpara’s focus on key performance indicators, which succinctly contextualize critical operating data in a user-friendly format on any device, give our customers a live view of their operations. This allows them to make better real-time decisions that improve the efficiency, reliability, safety and profitability of their operations. This partnership promises to help our customers keep pace with the increasing speed of business while driving immediate results to their bottom lines.”

Transpara extends Schneider Electric’s customer analytics portfolio to include real-time KPIs, dashboards and alerting that span multiple data sources on the fly, including intelligent machines, intelligent edge devices and other IT infrastructure, as well as cybersecurity data, business applications and web services. For example, Transpara software can detect if the performance of a process analyzer has degraded. By alerting operators to that trend, proactive maintenance can be performed before an incident arises, allowing greater real-time control over process and asset efficiency and reliability while increasing operator safety. The partnership will also allow real-time data to reach more audiences—including business executives, field services and maintenance providers, either remotely or on-premise—without the need for training and experience.

Combining Data, Context and Control

The partnership combines Schneider Electric’s EcoStruxure™ IIoT capabilities with Transpara’s Visual KPI™ solutions to help customers in operationally intensive industries, including refining, petrochemical, energy and mining, better understand and control the performance of their equipment and other assets. Visual KPI software aggregates multiple existing or external data sources on the fly without moving the data, including operations, financial and infrastructure information, and delivers role-based, actionable KPIs and alerts to end users, regardless of their location or device. Visual KPI applies context to data generated by different types of assets—from historians to relational databases to business intelligence tools and web services—and presents it in a visually appealing, fully mobile-responsive interface so the information and data are easily digestible and accessible without training.

The agreement includes both a reseller component and OEM relationship. The reseller agreement enables Schneider Electric to offer Transpara’s Visual KPI solution directly and through channel providers, as well as provide services to help customers deploy the software on-premise or in the cloud. The OEM portion of the agreement allows Schneider Electric to embed Visual KPI’s server, client and/or edge software directly in Schneider Electric devices of varying levels of intelligence, including everything from process analyzers and motor control centers to pumps and valves, and then extend these capabilities across products in a consistent, cleaner and more user-friendly manner.

In both arrangements, customers will gain immediate visibility to the entirety of their operations and all their data sources, which means they will be able to more quickly understand and eliminate unplanned downtime, make their processes more efficient and drive measurable improvements to the profitability of their operations, safely.

“In the near-term, Transpara technology will enhance our industry-leading IIoT-enabled EcoStruxure process automation offers, including our EcoStruxure Foxboro DCS and EcoStruxure Process Analyzers, while continuing to drive immediate value for existing customers,” Lyden said. “In the long-term, the partnership will hasten the evolution of our own next-generation process automation solutions that will extend real-time business control right to the asset layer in a full IIoT environment.”

EcoStruxure is Schneider Electric’s open, interoperable, IoT-enabled system architecture and platform. EcoStruxure delivers enhanced value around safety, reliability, efficiency, sustainability and connectivity for our customers. EcoStruxure leverages advancements in IoT, mobility, sensing, cloud, analytics and cybersecurity to deliver Innovation at Every Level. This includes Connected Products, Edge Control, and Apps, Analytics and Services. EcoStruxure has been deployed in 480,000+ sites, with the support of 20,000+ system integrators and developers, connecting over 1.6 million assets under management through 40+ digital services.

“Today’s highly connected IIoT landscape yields massive business opportunity for any operationally driven organization, but only if their data reaches the right people, at the right time, with immediate and obvious context in a user-friendly way,” said Michael Saucier, chief executive officer, Transpara. “Our partnership with Schneider Electric combines the best of both companies: our real-time, visually intuitive monitoring and analytics and Schneider Electric’s substantial array of digitally enabled products and managed services for industrial organizations. Together we will deliver continuous innovation that empowers our customers to move from simply managing business performance to controlling it in real time.”

For more information on Schneider Electric’s partnership with Transpara

Learn More

About Schneider Electric

Schneider Electric is leading the Digital Transformation of Energy Management and Automation in Homes, Buildings, Data Centers, Infrastructure and Industries.

With a global presence in over 100 countries, Schneider is the undisputable leader in Power Management – Medium Voltage, Low Voltage and Secure Power, and in Automation Systems. We provide integrated efficiency solutions, combining energy, automation and software.

In our global Ecosystem, we collaborate with the largest Partner, Integrator and Developer Community on our Open Platform to deliver real-time control and operational efficiency.

We believe that great people and partners make Schneider a great company and that our commitment to Innovation, Diversity and Sustainability ensures that Life Is On everywhere, for everyone and at every moment.

Schneider Electric

About Transpara

Founded in 2005, Transpara and its Visual KPI software for operations monitoring, KPI, dashboard and alerting serves operationally-driven enterprises globally in industries such as energy, oil and gas, manufacturing, IT & data centers, telecommunications and more.

Visual KPI leverages information across multiple data sources on-the-fly and delivers KPIs, dashboards, analytics and alerts to any device. By helping teams discover problems and opportunities before it’s too late, eliminating unplanned downtime and extending the reach of their data, Visual KPI delivers reduced operating costs, faster decisions and lowered business risk.

Transpara IIoT Software Featured in OSIsoft PI World EMEA Keynote

BARCELONA, SPAIN – September 27, 2018

Transpara’s Visual KPI real-time operations dashboard and IIoT software were key features of the Day 3 keynote, where Transpara’s Michael Saucier demonstrated live on stage. In the session, Transpara showed the integration of Visual KPI with OSIsoft’s Edge Data Store (EDS) and OSIsoft Cloud Services (OCS). This was the only live demo on the main stage during the multi-day event in Barcelona.

Here is a summary video of the demo (full keynote video link below):

See the full OSIsoft PI World EMEA Day 3 Keynote here.

If you would like more information about Visual KPI or our native integration with OSIsoft PI and AF, please contact us.

OSIsoft and Transpara Visual KPI

Transpara Enters Long-Term Partnership with Speedcast to Enhance Enterprise Satellite Service Monitoring

Ten-Year Contract Will Accelerate Transpara’s Growth in Australia and the Telecommunications Industry

Speedcast NBN Managed Services

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA July 25, 2018 – Transpara LLC, the market leader in real-time operations monitoring and data visualization, today announced it has secured a 10-year contract with Speedcast International Limited (ASX: SDA) to deliver real-time reporting, dashboards and alerts for enterprise-grade satellite broadband services in Australia. Transpara’s Visual KPI software will be used by Speedcast’s wholly owned subsidiary, Speedcast Managed Services, to help deliver a complete managed service for broadband access to enterprises across Australia. The contract includes a 10-year software license and support agreement along with upfront services to integrate multiple data sources.

The deal accelerates Transpara’s expansion into the telecommunications sector, where it will bring advanced monitoring and visualization capabilities built upon its 13-year history with real-time industrial data from the energy, oil & gas, mining and manufacturing industries. Transpara’s Visual KPI software will serve as the primary front-end reporting, charting and alerting component of Speedcast’s managed satellite services for multiple partners and customers across both government and enterprises.

“We are thrilled to have been selected by Speedcast and its partners for such an important effort and are excited to play a key role in bringing satellite broadband access to businesses across Australia. This contract is an important step for Transpara as it enters the telecommunications industry in Australia and other regions,” said Robert Hylton, Co-Founder and COO of Transpara. “We look forward to working alongside the Speedcast team to deliver on their vision of reliable communications services for mission-critical applications that enterprise and government customers depend on.”

About Transpara
Founded in 2005 and headquartered in the United States, Transpara and its Visual KPI operations monitoring, KPI, dashboard and alerting software serves operationally-driven enterprises globally in industries such as energy, oil and gas, IT & data centers, telecommunications and manufacturing. Visual KPI monitors operations and other information across multiple data sources and delivers KPIs, dashboards, trends, analytics and alerts to any device. By helping teams discover problems and opportunities before it’s too late, eliminating unplanned downtime and extending the reach of their data, Visual KPI delivers improved performance, reduced operating costs and lowered business risk. Visit https://www.transpara.com for more information.

More information on the opportunity can be found at the Speedcast website here: https://www.speedcast.com/speedcast-secures-contract-valued-au184-million-nbn-co-australia/

Bayer Consumer Care AG Licenses enterprise:inmation with Visual KPI for Global Digitalization Rollout

Bayer Consumer Care AG, one of the world’s leading Consumer Health companies, has signed a global non-expiring licensing agreement to use enterprise:inmation (which includes Transpara’s Visual KPI) from inmation Software GmbH, the technology leader in the field of global real-time information management in large-scale industry.

The license agreement includes unlimited use of the software for establishing a cross-system real-time information infrastructure at all Bayer Consumer Care AG production sites across the globe. Furthermore, Bayer Consumer Care has become a member of the Product Advisory Board at inmation.

Visual KPI is embedded as the core front-end client software in enterprise:inmation for real-time operations monitoring, dashboards, reporting, KPIs, visualization and alerts.

Read the full press release at inmation’s website: https://inmation.com/company/news/item/bayer-consumer-care-ag-licenses-enterprise-inmation-for-the-global-digitalisation-rollout.

Explore other Transpara customers or view Visual KPI customer reviews.

Boehringer Ingelheim Signs Global License Agreement for enterprise:inmation including Transpara Visual KPI

Leading research-driven pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim will use Transpara’s Visual KPI as part of enterprise:inmation, an industrial information management system from inmation Software GmbH.

The license agreement will enable Boehringer Ingelheim to create uniform real-time data infrastructure at all of its production facilities around the globe. Prior to the conclusion of the contract, Boehringer Ingelheim had tested the software in an in-depth evaluation for several months. In addition, as one of the first enterprise:inmation users from the pharmaceutical industry, Boehringer Ingelheim will join the advisory board of inmation Software to help further develop the management system to continue to meet the advanced needs of the industry.

Visual KPI is embedded as the core front-end client software in enterprise:inmation for real-time operations monitoring, dashboards, reporting, KPIs, visualization and alerts.

Read the full press release at inmation’s website: https://inmation.com/company/news/item/press-release-boehringer-ingelheim-signs-global-license-agreement-with-inmation-software.

Explore other Transpara customers or view Visual KPI customer reviews.