Migrating Helpdesk from one server to another

Article:HOWTO5608  |  Created: 2006-10-27  |  Updated: 2011-01-24  |  Article URL http://www.symantec.com/docs/HOWTO5608
Article Type
How To


Question

How can I move my Helpdesk and Knowledge Base System to a new server?

Answer
 

Note: This information is part of the Helpdesk user guide starting on page 177.

Altiris Helpdesk Solution 6.0 SP5 Product Guide
http://www.symantec.com/business/support/index?page=content&id=DOC1561

Once you have a healthy Helpdesk solution system running, you may need to move it to another server, such as while upgrading hardware, or because of a hardware failure. Moving a Helpdesk only solution is straightforward and is included in the process detailed below. Moving a Helpdesk that includes an active Knowledge Base application is more complicated.

The reasons for the additional complexity are as follows:

  • You have a SQL database to move.
  • You have at least twelve (12) virtual directories to configure.
  • You have an Indexing Service catalog to rebuild.
  • You have a lot of files to manage.

The SQL database, which is the same database as Helpdesk’s, has tables that track the location of the knowledge base articles. The knowledge base has proxy files associated with each article that track meta-data, including article location, of every article in the knowledge base. Each knowledge base library has six virtual directories associated with it that are assigned physical directories on the source server. Finally there are several Microsoft KB articles stating that Indexing Service catalogs cannot be moved from one server to another. So, you have a fair amount of bookkeeping to do to successfully move your system to a new server, but by following the steps below you can do it.

Considerations for Moving to a Dedicated Helpdesk If you are not upgrading versions of NS and Helpdesk, install same versions as the current NS server. Preparing for the Move

  1. Intending to have a dedicated Helpdesk server receive information from the current NS, and doing this by Inventory Forwarding, please refer to the following article:

    Inventory forwarding general questions
    http://www.symantec.com/business/support/index?page=content&id=HOWTO2626
     
  2. If you are forwarding information to your new dedicated Helpdesk server, make sure the same solutions/versions are installed that you will be forwarding data from; for example, Inventory Solution, Asset Control Solution, Contract Management Solution, and so on.

 

To prepare for the move, you should back up everything on your source server.

To back up your source server:

  1. Back up the Helpdesk database. This is typically named Altiris_Incidents and contains all of the Helpdesk and knowledge base data.
    Note: You should use SQL Enterprise Manager to backup the Helpdesk database (see the SQL online help).
  2. Backup the Helpdesk upload directory. This is typically named C:\Program Files\Altiris\Helpdesk\AeXHD\upload. These are the file attachments of the Helpdesk incidents.
  3. Backup the knowledge base articles. The default location is C:\Program Files\Altiris\Knowledge Base\Libraries. There is a subdirectory for each library in the system plus an empty directory, .AeXKB., that can be ignored. Each library directory has six subdirectories: Archives, ArchivesProxy, Articles, ArticlesProxy, Revisions, RevisionsProxy. The directories with .Proxy. concatenated to them hold the article proxy files that contain the article meta-data.

Preparing your Destination Server

To prepare your destination server:

  1. Install the latest Notification Server/Helpdesk Solution on your destination server. Configure the knowledge base the usual way as if you were starting a fresh system. Set the library default path to the location you want to use now, which may or may not be the same location as on your source server. Set the index server path to a location that is not used by IIS and with plenty of room to grow.
  2. Install any additional Indexing Service filters that your system requires, such as the PDF filter. These can be found, if available, on the respective manufactures Web sites, such as www.adobe.com for the PDF filter.
  3. Through the interface, create any additional libraries you have on your source server. If you want to use a different name on your destination server, now is the time to set it. Do not add scopes to these libraries to match your source system; we’ll handle that later.
  4. Your knowledge base libraries should look exactly like what you want your final system to look like; less, of course, the scopes and articles.
    Note: You can only move an entire library from the source to the destination. This process does not support the splitting or combining of libraries. It should only be one-to-one moving.
  5. Confirm that six virtual directories exist in the AeXKB web (inside the IIS manager) for each library you created. Remember there is a required "Review" library also.
  6. Copy the Formats.xml file, located by default in C:\Program Files\Altiris\Helpdesk\AeXHD\bin, from the source server to the destination server, if you are using the same version. If you are upgrading, edit the file on the destination server with any modifications you made before.
    Note: If you have not made any changes to this file, then you may skip this step.

Copying the Data Files

To copy the data files:

  1. Copy the article files from each of the libraries to the destination server. Copy the three article directories (Archives, Articles, and Revisions) from each library on the source server to the appropriate library on the destination server. Do not copy the proxy directories. Just leave the existing (empty) ones alone. Remember, if you are using a new library name, the destination directory will be the new name.
  2. Copy the incident attachment files from the Helpdesk Web upload directory of the source to the upload directory of the destination (see step 2 in Preparing for the Move).

Copying the database

To copy the database:

  1. Delete the destination Helpdesk database, Altiris_Incidents, from the SQL Server.
  2. Use SQL Enterprise Manager to copy the database from the source server to the destination server. You may need to stop IIS on the source server to close all the database connections so the copy can proceed. Remember to enable full text indexing on the destination database.

Modify the destination database

Run SQL statements to update the article, scope and library tables.

To modify the destination database:

  1. Update the library directory and name with the following SQL statements, use SQL Query Analyzer, replace "[DESCRIPTION]" with your data (getting rid of the brackets as well). Preserve the case of all fields.

    UPDATE kb_library
    SET library_path = N’[DESTINATION LIBRARY PHYSICAL DIRECTORY]’
    WHERE library_path = N’[SOURCE LIBRARY PHYSICAL DIRECTORY]’
    UPDATE kb_library
    SET library_name = N’[DESTINATION LIBRARY NAME]’
    Helpdesk Solution Product Guide 188
    WHERE library_path = N’[SOURCE LIBRARY NAME]’
    Example
    UPDATE kb_library
    SET library_path = N’C:\Knowledge
    Base\Libraries\MyNewLibraryName’
    WHERE library_path = N’C:\Program Files\Altiris\Knowledge
    Base\Libraries\MyOldLibraryName’
    UPDATE kb_library
    SET library_name = N’MyNewLibraryName’
    WHERE library_path = N’MyOldLibraryName’
    Update the scope directory and scope root names with the following SQL statements.

    UPDATE kb_scope
    SET scope_directory = REPLACE(scope_directory, N’[SOURCE
    LIBRARY PHYSICAL DIRECTORY]’, N’[DESTINATION LIBRARY PHYSICAL
    DIRECTORY]’)
    WHERE scope_directory LIKE N’[SOURCE LIBRARY PHYSICAL
    DIRECTORY]%’
    UPDATE kb_scope
    SET scope_name = REPLACE(scope_name, N’[SOURCE LIBRARY PHYSICAL
    NAME]’, N’[DESTINATION LIBRARY NAME]’)
    WHERE scope_name LIKE N’[SOURCE LIBRARY PHYSICAL NAME]%’

    Example
    UPDATE kb_scope
    SET scope_directory = REPLACE(scope_directory, N’C:\Program
    Files\Altiris\Knowledge Base\Libraries\MyOldLibraryName’,
    N’C:\Knowledge Base\Libraries\MyNewLibraryName’)
    WHERE scope_directory LIKE N’ C:\Program
    Files\Altiris\Knowledge Base\Libraries\MyOldLibraryName%’ /*
    notice the ’%’ stays */
    UPDATE kb_scope
    SET scope_name = REPLACE(scope_name, N’MyNewLibraryName’,
    N’MyOldLibraryName’)
    WHERE scope_name LIKE N’MyOldLibraryName%’ /* notice the ’%’
    stays */
    Update the article directory and filename fields:

    UPDATE kb_article
    Helpdesk Solution Product Guide 189
    SET article_fqfn = REPLACE(article_fqfn, N’[SOURCE LIBRARY
    PHYSICAL DIRECTORY]’, N’[DESTINATION LIBRARY PHYSICAL
    DIRECTORY]’)
    WHERE article_fqfn like N’[SOURCE LIBRARY PHYSICAL DIRECTORY]%’
    UPDATE kb_article
    SET article_directory = REPLACE(article_directory, N’[SOURCE
    LIBRARY PHYSICAL DIRECTORY]’, N’[DESTINATION LIBRARY PHYSICAL
    DIRECTORY]’)
    WHERE article_directory LIKE N’[SOURCE LIBRARY PHYSICAL
    DIRECTORY]%’

    Example
    UPDATE kb_article
    SET article_fqfn = REPLACE(article_fqfn,
    N’C:\Program Files\Altiris\Knowledge
    Base\Libraries\MyOldLibraryName’,
    N’C:\Knowledge Base\Libraries\MyNewLibraryName’)
    WHERE article_fqfn like N’ C:\Program Files\Altiris\Knowledge
    Base\Libraries\MyOldLibraryName%’ /* notice the ’%’ stays */
    UPDATE kb_article
    SET article_directory = REPLACE(article_directory, N’C:\Program
    Files\Altiris\Knowledge Base\Libraries\MyOldLibraryName’,
    N’C:\Knowledge Base\Libraries\MyNewLibraryName’)
    WHERE article_directory LIKE N’C:\Program
    Files\Altiris\Knowledge Base\Libraries\MyOldLibraryName%’ /*
    notice the ’%’ stays */
    Update the Helpdesk attachments table

    UPDATE workitem_attachment
    SET url = REPLACE(url, N’[SOURCE HOST NAME]’, N’[DESTINATION
    HOST NAME]’)

    Example
    UPDATE workitem_attachment
    SET url = REPLACE(url, N’www.myoldbox.com’,
    N’www.mynewbox.com’)

     

    1. Browse to the Knowledge Base configuration page (Configuration > Solutions Settings > Incident Management > Helpdesk Solution > Knowledge Base Settings).
    2. Select the Delete the existing catalog and re-create it in the same location check box.
    3. Click Apply to confirm the Knowledge Base configuration.
    4. Notice the Finalize page is displayed when this is completed. Now click the Finish button to confirm the required libraries are present and a refresh is performed on each one.
    5. This process may take quite a while if there are a large number of articles. You can monitor it by browsing to the Incidents tab of the Altiris Console and choosing the Libraries command from the Knowledge Base menu. The "Scopes to Refresh" column shows the number of scopes remaining to be processed.

    Related Article

    How to migrate an old Notification Server to a new server
    http://www.symantec.com/business/support/index?page=content&id=HOWTO1682

    Refresh the Libraries

    Refresh the libraries to discover the scopes (directories copied from the source computer) and create the article proxy files.

    To refresh the libraries:
  2.  
  3.  
  4.  
  5. Update the Helpdesk Tasks table

UPDATE wu_custom_instance
SET valuetext = REPLACE(CAST(valuetext as nvarchar(max)), N'oldservername',N'newservername')
WHERE valuetext LIKE '%oldservername%'

Example UPDATE wu_custom_instance
SET valuetext = REPLACE(CAST(valuetext as nvarchar(max)), N'oldservername',N'newservername')
WHERE valuetext like '%oldservername%'

 

 


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