myServer Installation

Welcome to the myServer installation documentation

myServer represents Allonis's media management and home automation software components. myServer has been rewritten from the ground up to improve system speed, reliability and new features like voice recognition and user login for security.



System Requirements

  • Microsoft Windows 10, 8, 7, and Vista (not recommended, but will work with most functions) licensed (won't install in OS trial mode), with all the current service packs and security updates. (32 or 64 bit versions. 64 bit recommended). Windows 2008 Server or newer is supported. XP cannot be used (doesn't support .NET 4.5).
  • modern dual-core processor or better (recommended is i5 or better.  i7 is generally overkill for most all installations.)
  • .NET 4.5.2 or newer installed
  • 2GB main memory. (4GB or more recommended)
  • 100GB free disk space.
  • myServer PC with persistent Internet connection (Internet connectivity recommended for many features to work but optional). The PC should be on a quality UPS to ensure up time when the power temporarily may go down to ensure system up time.

The ideal PC for using myServer software is a Core i5 processor with 8GB of memory with a ~250 gig SATA III hard drive running a fresh installation of Windows 10 Pro 64 bit. SSD drives are recommended for speed and reliability. For additional reliability, a RAID 1 operating system (where myServer software is typically installed) dual drive setup is best for redundancy.

Installation

Install the myInstaller App. Read myInstaller Installation for myInstaller download link and instructions Because of the number of new components required for the successful installation of myServer5 you must install all the prerequisite software prior to installing myServer. This section will guide you through these steps. Make sure you follow them in order and do not skip any steps. If you have any issues installing any of these prerequisite items do not continue to install other items. Call tech support and get assistance.

If you are upgrading from MLServer4, read this article: Upgrading to myServer 5 from MLServer 4

If you are upgrading from MLServer3, read this article: Upgrading to myServer 5 from MLServer 3

The myServer installation will take about 30 minutes depending on your Internet download speed.

If you were thinking of upgrading old server hardware, now would be a great time to do so. Don't forget that Allonis sells a line of servers that come with myServer pre-installed!

  1. Change the Windows power plan to the High Performance plan and make sure you march through all the settings making sure that all the options for sleeping, hibernating, power management are turned off.
  2. Configure your PC on the network.  Click HERE.
  3. Download and install myInstaller application on the PC you want to install myServer. Read this article: myInstaller Installation
  4. Shut off any Antivirus utilities.   It is recommended that myServer is installed on a dedicated PC that does NOT surf the Internet.  Therefore an Antivirus program is not of benefit, but can prevent things from working properly unless the utility is properly configured to allow normal myServer communications.
  5. Select all components in Section A of myInstaller and click Download Selected button.
  6. Post download, Click Clear All, then re-Select SQL Server 2014 and Data Migration and click Install Selected button.
  7. The myDBInstaller application should install by default to C:\Program Files (x86)\Allonis\myServer.
  8. Launch the myDBInstaller application.
  9. On the Custom Execution Path form, select Step 1) Install SQL Server.  The SQL Server Installation app should download and install the new server. Don't click the "Finish" button until it is completely installed (says "SQL Installer has finished" in the event log). Depending on your download speed is, this should take about 10 minutes.
  10. DBInstaller1
  11. The installer will automatically download SQL Server correct version for your system (64 bit vs. 32 bit)
  12. DBInstaller2
  13. Once finished downloading, it will install SQL Server. 
  14. DBInstaller3
  15. The DB Installer will then connect to SQL Server and download the default myServer database: 
  16. DBInstaller4
  17. When the SQL Database is all installed "SQL Installer is finished" you can then click the "Finish" button 
  18. DBInstaller5
  19. Once DBInstaller has finished, if you are upgrading a MLServer4 installation, rerun the Data Migration app again this time choose OPTIONAL STEP 2) Migrate your legacy database.  It is unusual to select the "Database Migration Only" option.  This is if you don't have MLServer4 installed,  but have the database backup.  So for most upgrades, leave this deselected.
  20. Windows may want you to reboot if a prior Windows Update (or other) wants it to. On reboot, just rerun the SQL Server installer again, Rerun the dbInstaller application from myInstaller application.
  21. The data migration will ask if you want to redownload SQL server. You can choose NO since you just installed it.
  22. The Optional MLServer4 migration utility will take about 10 more minutes to complete, depending on how many files you have and your Internet download speed. It will copy all images / pertinent files from the prior MLServer directory over to the new myServer directory. It will migrate all cycle states, variables etc. for you.
  23. On completion, you will see "File Migration Finished" in the Data Migration event log.
  24. Go back to myInstaller application and install myServer5.
  25. Ensure myAgent is shutdown as it shares files with myServer.
  26. The myServer installation may look paused at the "Creating Directories" step. Don't worry, it's setting file permissions on lots of directories so it might take a few minutes.  On upgrades of myServer, you can generally deselect this step.
  27. You will soon see the Configure Firewall, Scheduled Task and Network Shares. Ensure that is checked and click Finish.
  28. Your new myServer shortcut should be on the Desktop. It should have a shield on it that all admin permissions are set.
  29. Go back into myInstaller and install the myUI for Tablets and the myUI for Phones web pages. 
  30. Launch myServer5!
  31. On launch, you will see that it is licensed for a 30 day trial period.
  32. Send an Activation Request from within myServer. You will soon receive a upgrade license post purchase.
  33. It is recommended for first time myServer users that you install the three Simulator drivers from myInstaller.  The simulators mimic hardware that you might not have installed yet.  For example, install the Shades Simulator so the default web page apps can show how Shades are controlled and setup.
  34. After installing any driver, or updating family manager settings, or myServer network settings, you should restart myServer for those settings to fully take effect.

 

 Using myServer

  1. On the myServer PC open a DOS prompt:  Open a Windows search bar and type "Command Prompt"
  2. Type: "ipconfig /all" and hit the Enter key
  3. You will see your PC's network adapters and their addresses.  Typically it will look like: "IPV4 address.......192.168.1.2"  The IP address is the myServer PC network address.
  4. In myServer, click on Tools / Options and click on the Network tab.  Type your PC's IP address in the "myServer DNS name or IP address" box.
  5. Restart myServer
  6. Open a Chrome browser.  type:  http://192.168.1.2/myUI.Tablets.sample/index.html   and hit Enter key
  7. You should now be looking at a home page within the myUI.Tablets.Sample user interface. 
  8. You can also go to: within the Chrome browser.  type:  http://192.168.1.2/myUI.Phone.sample/index.html   and hit Enter key
  9. You should now be looking at a home page within the myUI.Phone.Sample user interface.
  10. Typically, you should go into the ...Program Files(x86)/Allonis/myServer/HTML directory and copy the myUI.Tablets.sample folder to a new folder name ("ourHome").  You can then use that folder name for your own modified scenes.  Best is not to modify the sample pages so you can always see how Allonis programmed things before you modified them.  You would then use http://192.168.1.2/ourHome/index.html as your new web page for your custom scenes.

 

myServer Backup 
In the myServer Tools / Options / General tab labeled "Automatically Backup Server Every Night". This option will default enabled. 

When enabled myServer will every morning shortly after 3 am
1) Backup the SQL Database
2) Backup the myServer\Images Folder
3) Backup the myServer\HTML Folder

These represent the three critical items that you will need in order to restore your server from a failure or move it to a new PC. You will see three new files created in the myServer\Backups folder. One for each of the three items. The number of backups stored in this folder is controlled by the Cache Retention Days setting.

 

  

 

Next Steps

There are dozens of new features in myServer5 and you should take time to familiarize yourself with them before you start to use myServer in daily use. The best place for you to start is the myServer5 primer which can be found at myServer5 What's New.

Ultimate / Trial installation:  Let's install the myContent application!  Click HERE

Or, how about next installing Google Play Music? Click HERE

Accessing the user interface:

Create a desktop shortcut and put something like this in the Target.

"C:\Program Files\Google\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe" --kiosk --incognito --disable-infobars http://myserver:80/myUI.Tablets/index.html

Put this in the path including the parenthesis: "C:\Program Files\Google\Chrome\Application"

This will open the ui in full screen kiosk mode
Modify for the specifics of your paths. 

Managing the myServer5 Database (Optional)

For power users, that might want direct access to the myServerSQL database, here is a method to connect directly to the DB using Access.

You can download and install the SQL Server Management Studio from the link in myInstaller (bottom)

The first item is to create an ODBC link to the myServerSQL database (unless it is the local server)

  • Start the ODBC control panel applet (Start - Settings - Control Panel - ODBC)
  • Under User Data Sources will be a list of data sources you can connect to. Click Add
  • Select SQL Server and click Finish
  • Enter a name for the source (myServerSQL), a description (myServerSQL) and a server name/IP address (myServerSQL). Click Next
  • Select the type of authentication and enter the username "SA" and password "Allonis". Click Next
  • You can set the default database by clicking "Change the default database to" and select "Allonis". Click Next
  • Select character translation (except default) and click Next
  • Select log options and click Finish
  • At the end a summary will be displayed and click "Test Data Source" to perform a brief test. Click OK to complete
  • Close the ODBC dialog box by clicking OK

Now you have the connection you need to configure Access to use it

  • Start Access 97
  • Select Blank Database and click OK
  • Enter a name and directory, click Create
  • Select the Tables tab
  • From the File menu select Get External Data - Link Tables
  • In the bottom left corner of the displayed dialog will be "Files of type:". Change this to "ODBC databases"
  • A new dialog will be displayed. Click the "Machine Data Source" tab
  • Select the Data Source created using ODBC earlier (myServerSQL) and click OK
  • You may need to enter the password "Allonis" for the database.
  • You will now see "Link Table" dialog, select and click OK. Select All tables. You will then have to click OK a zillion times to bring in all of the tables.
  • Under your main Table tab you will now see dbo.myServerSQL and double clicking will give a graphical view.

Upgrade Considerations

Question: Should I upgrade?

Answer: Yes, and for a lot of reasons. Primarily because the V5 generation of products is where all the development efforts are focused. With myServer5 there will not be any further development of myServer 3 or 4 and its legacy plugins and agents. myServer5 represents the most robust automation controller on the market today. You will want to take advantage of its stability and features.

Question: What will the upgrade cost?

Answer: If you are a current owner of MLServer 4 then you will be able to upgrade to myServer5 for $99. This upgrade will get you a myServer5 license valid for 5 client connections and a license for the myServer5 myDesigner. Those on MLServer 3 have an upgrade available for $199.

Question: Will me old license keys and activation codes work?

Answer: Yes and No. Yes for all your legacy myServer plugins that you may choose to use. No for any product that supports a version number of 5 or greater. This means that you can upgrade the core myServer for a nominal fee and re-use all your existing MLServer legacy plugins. This is the most cost effective upgrade path. You can then upgrade to newer V5 generation products as they become available and you are ready to upgrade.

Question: Will I have to make any changes to my current Mainlobby client scenes?

Answer: Yes! When you start to migrate from the legacy plugins to the new V5 apps and drivers then you will have to modify your scenes to compensate for the new myServer command and server variable syntax. The wiki pages associated with these components will document the changes. More significantly, Allonis will not support the MainLobby Flash client. It is highly recommended that you switch to the HTML5 web pages. Flash is an older technology that has been replaced with HTML5.

Question: My MLServer isn't broke. Do I need to fix it?

Answer: No! If you are not ready to upgrade and your current MLServer installation is functioning fine then you do not have to jump in and upgrade. If you are not comfortable with performing the upgrade or making the changes to your MainLobby scenes then you can purchase professional consulting hours from us and we'll make the changes for you. Contact us for more information on this service. You can also install myServer5 on the same PC as MLServer and run each independently of each other (just not at the same time).

 

Troubleshooting:

myServer (nor myDesigner) won't connect to SQL server:

Ensure SQL server is running on default port 1433

How to determine which port SQL server is running on:  

  1. Go into Task Manager / Details tab and look for SQLServer.exe...see what PID Windows has assigned it.
  2. Open a DOS window and type:  Netstat =nao | more
  3. Look sof rht PID and see what port is showing for that PID in the TCP column.  It should be 1433.  If anything else, SQL server must be changed back to 1433.  At one point previosly, SQL Server may have been configured for Dynamic port assignage.

 

The sql client (myServer) first issues a UDP broadcast on port 1433 asking for a connection to the instance. When the server responds and dynamic ports are enabled it will pass the port number it wants the client to use. If there is no response to the udp request then the tcp request is made to port 1433. if dynamic ports are enabled tcp will respond with the port to use. if no dynamic ports are available then the static port is used.  So, if  the network does not allow UDP broadcasts, then the SQL server must be setup with static port 1433.  Note that myUI Discovery also won't work on this same network as Discovery uses a UDP broadcast too.  You can manually configure myUI if this is the case.

Installing on 2016 Windows Server in a VM:

This is not a supported OS, but myServer will run on it when the user understands how to install.  Essentially it requires a manual SQL Server install followed up with a manual SQL Management Tools install.

Then, change the default myDatabase  "sa" password to one that works, create the myDatabase, restore master myDatabase. All must be done manually.

Allonis can assist with difficult installations.  Just install TeamViewer (available in myInstaller towards the bottom) and email or forum PM Allonis your TeamViewer user id and password with a time we should log in.