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Attaché server-to-server migration

This page contains step-by-step instructions for migrating Attaché from one server to another. This includes updating ODBC DSN connections and moving custom ClearView reports.

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Applicable versions

  • Attaché 19
  • Attaché 18
  • Attaché BI version 3.5 or later versions of Attaché BI

Note: If you are using Attaché Accounts and Payroll (version 1.x) see How to move Attaché data to a new location (Attaché Accounts tutorial)

Before you begin

Prior to migrating Attaché company data, you need to install Attaché and related products (such as ClearView, Asset Management and ODBC) and the Attaché Database Server on the new server. Follow the standard installation steps and ensure Attaché is working on the new server:

Important notes:

  • This process will use Attaché Backup Scheduler, which is installed as part of the Attaché Database Server installation.
  • It is essential that the migrating from and to servers have same version of Attaché installed. 
  • All users must be logged out of the software for the duration of the migration process. This can range from one hour to a whole day depending on variables including: 
    • Number of companies to be migrated
    • Number of workstations 
    • Data size of the companies to be migrated
    • Specifications of the from and to servers
    • Network file transfer speed
    • Additional components to set up such as custom reports and external connections
    • Problems that may be encountered during setup related to the environment, including firewall, anti-virus and network and computer/server permissions
  • Attaché recommends completing a test migration, before a final production migration.
    • A test migration can use live, or history data. One of the aims is to ensure that the staff completing the migration is comfortable with the process, so that the data can be safely and successfully migrated.
    • All critical functionality should be tested on the test migration environment before proceeding to a production migration.
  • If migrating to Attaché 19.2 (or later): Do not disconnect companies that are connected to Attaché Online organisations prior to migrating. Instead, after migrating you use the Replace function in Cloud Connector to update the connection. See Reconnecting Companies to Attaché Online below.  If migrating to Attaché 19.1 or earlier, also see below. 

Backing up current Attaché companies and settings

Note: Complete this task on the current Attaché Database Server.

To create a backup of your Attaché companies (datasets) and settings:

  1. Navigate to the \AttacheServer\Attache Backup Scheduler\ folder.
  2. Right-click on AttBackupScheduler.exe and select Run as Administrator.
  3. If prompted by User Account Control, click yes.
  4. Select New.
  5. In the Select datasets to backup menu, tick all the companies to be migrated to the new server.
  6. Select a destination for the .zip file that will be created (for example, C:\Temp).
  7. Ensure the Attaché Program Folder is correct (for example C:\Apps\AttacheBI). 
  8. Select OK.
  9. Type in a task name and optionally a description (for example, Attaché Server Migration Backup).
  10. Select Next.
  11. Select One Time.
  12. Select Next.
  13. Ensure the Start date is set to the current date and the Time is in the future, generally in the next 5 minutes.
  14. Select Next.
  15. Select Run only when user is logged on.
  16. Select Next.
  17. Select Finish.
  18. Allow time for the scheduled backup to complete. This may take some time, depending on the number of companies and size of data for each company.
  19. Open the created .zip and check that it contains a .dat (data) file.

Moving the companies and settings to the new Attaché Database Server

Note: Complete this task on the new Attaché Database Server.

To move the companies (datasets) and settings to the new server:

  1. Copy the saved backup (.zip) file to the new server via your preferred file transfer method, for example Network File Transfer, USB Memory or uploading/downloading via a secure file transfer portal.
  2. Navigate to the \AttacheServer\Attache Backup Scheduler\ folder.
  3. Right-click on AttBackupScheduler.exe and select Run as Administrator.
  4. Select Restore From Location.
  5. Browse to the folder where you copied the backup (.zip) file to in step 1.
  6. Select Next.
  7. Highlight the backup (.zip) file that was copied to the server in step 1 and ensure the file name matches the backup (.zip) file.
  8. Select Next.
  9. Ensure the Attaché Database Server location is correct.
  10. Ensure the Attaché Program Folder location is correct.
  11. Select Next.
  12. Tick all companies which are to be accessible to clients on the new Attaché Database Server.
  13. Open the services console (services.msc) and stop the Attaché Database Server and Attaché Service API. Ensure no one is logged into the software at this time.
  14. Select Next.
  15. Review the details on screen and then select Restore.
  16. Wait for the restore to complete and then select Finish.
  17. Open the services console (services.msc) and start the Attaché Database Server and Attaché Service API.

Pointing workstations to the new Attaché Database Server

Each workstation that connects with the Attaché application needs to be set up to access the database on the new server. You can use either of the following methods to do this: 

(a) From within Attaché on each workstation:

  1. On the Attaché Sign On screen, select Server (F3).
  2. Select the row for the new Attaché Database Server Host Name.
  3. Choose Select.

or

(b) Manual entry of data connection string (Attaché workstation)

To test each workstation connection, log in to the software.

Pointing ODBC DSNs to the new Attaché Database Server

The server DNS Name and IP will usually be different on the new server. This means that an ODBC DSNs will need to be recreated or edited to reflect the new hostname.

The DSNs will need to be updated on each workstation PC using ODBC to extract data from Attaché BI.

  1. Follow Creating Attaché Server ODBC DSNs to recreate or edit the current DSN. Note: if editing, only the Host field will need to be  changed. 
  2. Test the DSN is configured correctly. The quickest way to do this is to use Microsoft Excel (see Using Attaché Server ODBC data sources in applications).

Moving custom ClearView reports to the new Attaché Database Server

If you have custom ClearView reports, you need to move them to the new Attaché Database Server.

There are two methods of moving custom reports between installations: 

(a) Export and then import the custom reports 

  1. Export the reports from the old Attaché Database Server:
    1. On a workstation with access to the original Attaché Database Server, open ClearView Report Designer.
    2. Select Export from the Open Report menu. 
    3. Select the custom reports to be exported by clicking in the Available Reports list. (Hold down the Ctrl key to select multiple reports.)
    4. In the File Name field, select a file location, for example, C:\Temp\custom_reports.
    5. Click Export.and then click OK.
    6. Copy the .zip file created to the new Attaché Database Server using your preferred file transfer method.

  2. Import to the new Attaché Database Server:
    1. On a workstation with access to the new Attaché Database Server, open ClearView Report Designer.
    2. Select Import from the Open Report menu. 
    3. At the File Name field, browse to the .zip file that you copied to the new server during the export process.
    4. Click Import.
    5. Click Select All or individually select the reports to be imported.
    6. Click OK.

or

(b)  Copy the PLINK.dat file from the old Attaché program directory to the new one. For example:

    1. Copy from: \\Oldserver\Apps\Attache BI\Plink\Plink.dat
    2. Copy to: \\Newserver\Apps\Attache BI\Plink\Plink.dat 


Updating company connections to Attaché Online

Migrating to Attaché 19.2 (or later)

If you have Attaché desktop companies that are connected to Attaché Online organisations, you need to update the connections.  

Do not disconnect the companies prior to migration. Instead, after you have installed the new Attaché Database Server and application, log in to each connected company and launch Cloud Connector from the desktop menu. Follow the wizard and when asked to connect to an organisation, click the Replace button to update the connection.


 Migrating to Attaché 19.1 (or earlier)

Companies need to be disconnected from Attaché Online organisations after final processing has been completed on the old Attaché Database Server. This is to ensure that two identical datasets do not create synchronisation conflict on the online organisation environment.

  1. Open Cloud Connector on the old server
  2. Launch Cloud Connector
  3. Login to Cloud Connector using the Supervisor password
  4. Disconnect each connected company by clicking on the "Disconnect" action on the right

To confirm the company has been successfully disconnected, login to the Attaché Online Organisation as a user with "Organisation Admin" privileges

  1. Navigate to Settings > Company Connections
  2. Confirm there are no current Company Connections

Decommissioning the old Attaché Database Server

To avoid confusion and data being entered in the the incorrect database, it is recommended that your old Attaché Database Server is brought offline at the time of migration, as soon as the final backup is made. This means that there will be some downtime, while restoring data to the new server, as well as connections from workstations are complete. It is reasonable to have the new server setup, and workstations connected, testing on Sample Data before completing the final live data migration, ensuring a smooth transition.

To disable the old Attaché Database Server:

  1. Open the services console (services.msc)
  2. Stop the following services, once it has been confirmed all users are no longer processing, or logged into the software:
    1. Attaché Database Server
    2. Attaché Service API
    3. Attaché Cloud Connector - Message Processor
    4. Attaché Cloud Connector - Message Relay
    5. PLALTSRVBI
    6. PLEDSSRVBI
    7. PLHDMSRVBI
  3. Disable the following services, so that they no longer are able to be started:
    1. Right Click > Properties > Startup Type - "Disabled"
    2. Apply
    3. Ok
      1. Attaché Database Server
      2. Attaché Service API
      3. Attaché Cloud Connector - Message Processor
      4. Attaché Cloud Connector - Message Relay
      5. PLALTSRVBI
      6. PLEDSSRVBI
      7. PLHDMSRVBI

Once a reasonable amount of time has passed, all services have been tested, and running as expected on the new Attaché Database server, a final environment backup can be taken for reference using the site IT's preferred method. Each site can then chose how to proceed with decommissioning the relevant IT Resource, whether a physical server, or virtual machine.

In the case where a server-to-server migration has failed for an unknown reason, these services can be brought back online, and processing can continue as usual.


REF: 192 HL0048 271119