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FlexLM - triad & multiple vendor daemons

Visitor

FlexLM - triad & multiple vendor daemons

I'm planning to convert our FlexLM single node license server for ProE and
Intralink (currently running on the Intralink server) to a triad. All
servers I intend to use are running Win2K and reside on the same subnet.
My plan is to load the latest version of FlexLM off the PTC software discs
and read in the triad license file generated from the license tool on the
PTC web page. Seems pretty straight forward. Now, however, it has been
suggested that license services (also FlexLM ) for three other software
packages be converted to run on the same triad setup. These three
additional vendors have supplied FlexLM license files generated
referencing the unique IDs for each PC I intend to use for the triad.
This is where it starts to get more complicated.

- The software vendors each recommend against combining their license file
with those of another software package. (and I would like each to run a
separate lmgrd to allow for better management)
-The FlexLM documentation states that the port number on the server lines
of each license file must be unique. Only two of the license files appear
to include a port designation on the server lines (the PTC license pack
and one from the other CAD app)
- Is it as simple as loading FlexLM once and reading in each software
vendor's license pack? The FlexLM documentation is a little unclear.

If anyone has any experience with a similar situation and can offer any
tips or warnings it would be much appreciated.

We are currently running ProE 2001 2003441 and Intralink 3.3 2003290, all
clients and servers are on Win2K. All applications to be license served
are Engineering related (why I'm involved) - ProE & Intralink, a 2D CAD
app, and two analysis packages.

Thanks!


Regards,

Erik Gifford
G.W. Lisk Co., Inc.
6 REPLIES 6

RE: FlexLM - triad & multiple vendor daemons

I have successfully setup a triad configuration....it only lasted two
weeks. We then reverted back to a single server. The triad config was very
unstable even with all servers at the same geographic location and extremely
fast connections. I spent hours on the phone with tech support and even
they recommended not using a triad. It requires an excessive amount of time
to maintain. I also do not advise running multiple versions of FlexLM on the
same server. Hope this helps.


Brian Riffel
IGT Hardware Engineering

RE: FlexLM - triad & multiple vendor daemons

I don't quite see why in this day and age people are still trying to
setup license server triads.

Because license server triads were developed over 10 years ago for an
old problem, unreliable servers, servers that would hardly stay up for a
few days before crashing. That's the problem triads solve: if you have 3
servers and they each crash every few days, hey, with a triad you have a
chance of serving licenses OK for a month or two or more, just because
no one crash brings the entire triad down.

But surely servers now are much more reliable, and don't crash every few
days. If you do have a server that crashes every few days, probably best
to fix that problem, rather than look at a triad to improve reliability.
And to be effective, triads require the servers be as close as possible,
no particular advantage for remote sites.

So nowadays we should be able to get triad levels of reliability, with
just one server humming away happily for months and months. Over 10
years ago that may have been a dream, now it's routine.

Peter Nurkse
Sun Microsystems
peter.nurkse@sun.com

>
> I have successfully setup a triad configuration....it only lasted two
> weeks. We then reverted back to a single server. The triad config was very
> unstable even with all servers at the same geographic location and extremely
> fast connections. I spent hours on the phone with tech support and even
> they recommended not using a triad. It requires an excessive amount of time
> to maintain. I also do not advise running multiple versions of FlexLM on the
> same server. Hope this helps.
>
> Brian Riffel
> IGT Hardware Engineering
>

RE: FlexLM - triad & multiple vendor daemons

Even with older technology servers, our SGI Origin 200 (Sorry Peter!) has been up
for 371 days, 3 hours and 22 minutes, and still running strong.

I probably just jinxed that nice run! but had to chime in that even older technology
was/is not _that_ unstable either. As Peter stated, 10 years ago stability was more
of an issue, and why FlexLM offered the triad capability. Even then, the trade off to
the hassle was not worth it with triad serving.

I too messed with triad serving a few times since it's inception and found it was
troublesome. My recall is that it was conflicting with other processes in triad's continual
quest to communicate with each other, regardless of the quality/speed of the connection.

And why exactly is it that I'll be replacing our rock solid Unix MCAD server with a windows server? ? ?

Oh yeah, UGS dropped support for Irix for the upcoming NX3 release!...that's why.

For Peter's sake, in a previous career, Sun servers were equally as robust in my experience.

Thanks,



Blaine Prout
Engineering Business Analyst
Phillips Plastics Corporation
Hudson, WI USA

>>> Peter Nurkse <peter.nurkse@sun.com> 7/13/2004 4:53:28 PM >>>


I don't quite see why in this day and age people are still trying to
setup license server triads.

Because license server triads were developed over 10 years ago for an
old problem, unreliable servers, servers that would hardly stay up for a
few days before crashing. That's the problem triads solve: if you have 3
servers and they each crash every few days, hey, with a triad you have a
chance of serving licenses OK for a month or two or more, just because
no one crash brings the entire triad down.

But surely servers now are much more reliable, and don't crash every few
days. If you do have a server that crashes every few days, probably best
to fix that problem, rather than look at a triad to improve reliability.
And to be effective, triads require the servers be as close as possible,
no particular advantage for remote sites.

So nowadays we should be able to get triad levels of reliability, with
just one server humming away happily for months and months. Over 10
years ago that may have been a dream, now it's routine.

Peter Nurkse
Sun Microsystems
peter.nurkse@sun.com

>
> I have successfully setup a triad configuration....it only lasted two
> weeks. We then reverted back to a single server. The triad config was very
> unstable even with all servers at the same geographic location and extremely
> fast connections. I spent hours on the phone with tech support and even
> they recommended not using a triad. It requires an excessive amount of time
> to maintain. I also do not advise running multiple versions of FlexLM on the
> same server. Hope this helps.
>
> Brian Riffel
> IGT Hardware Engineering
>

RE: FlexLM - triad & multiple vendor daemons

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RE: FlexLM - triad & multiple vendor daemons

Here,here!! I agree with Gerry. If a single license server were to go down then we would have some of the highest paid people in the company sitting idle. I too, run a Sun triad for Pro/E and Medusa. In fact, I have never run anything but a triad for these 2 apps since 1992 (when we migrated off of VAX/VMS to Sun) and have had very very little trouble with the set up or reliability.

Not sure what all the difficulty is...

...maybe it's a Windows thing...
(yeah, I know, flame on!!)

Regards,

Michael J. Connolly
Worldwide PLM/PDM Manager
ITT Industries, Cannon
617-969-3700 x8302

RE: FlexLM - triad & multiple vendor daemons

All,

We had used triads for many years here, but converted to single license
servers. The problem we were having was that with many of the more common
hiccups of our servers (but not going completely down), the whole triad
would hose and we would have to restart all three (happened every couple of
months or so, and it was a UNIX server!). As far as total server crashes,
we have had one in the five years I have been here and it was not any of the
license servers (bad power supply on one of the other 3 servers).

Part of my decision to go to a single server was in three years, the only
trouble I had with the license servers was the occasional (but of often
enough to be a problem) hose of the license triad. Also, our tests showed
that unless it was an immediate system crash on the server (which almost
never happens), the triad would go down with it. Since we went single
server (over two years ago), our license server has only been unavailable
for <10 minutes on two occasions where we had to reboot the server (one
occasion was due to networking changes that is hopefully a
once-in-a-great-while event, but we are wiser should we have to do it
again).

Also, with Windows servers, you can quickly put the license server on
another computer (server or desktop). All we have to do is remove the
primary network card from the old server and put it on the new computer and
the license packs will work with no more than a quick edit (I prefer PTC's
quick license pack availability, but Gerry is right that PTC is rare
providing that service).

Regards,

Darren Guidry
Manager - Engineering Automation Services
L-3 Communications Integrated Systems

The views and opinions expressed in this communication are those of
the author and do not necessarily express the views and opinions of
L-3 Communications or any other entity.