SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional Server Migration
dateAugust 28, 2020

Like other server products, SOLIDWORKS PDM system works well with compatible Operating System version. When the Operating Systems is no longer compatible with SOLIDWORKS PDM, we can migrate the PDM server to a new system to solve the problem. This article is to let you know the migration process and what you have to prepare. I also design a form to let the customer record down some important information for your PDM consultant before the actual migration work.

Before the PDM Server migration, the first information we need to figure out is the Operating System version. You can check the information from the link below: https://www.solidworks.com/sw/support/SystemRequirements.html , I include the screen capture from the website for your reference:

Based on the above image, you can see 2021 release is only compatible with Windows Server 2016 and 2019, and Windows Server 2012 R2 is the last version can support 2019 release, which means if you want to upgrade your PDM server to 2020 or 2021 release, you have to migrate to a new server.

Other than checking the version of the Operating System, you need to check the MS SQL Server version as well, as the SOLIDWORKS PDM Database is based on the MS SQL Server.

Based on the image below, the SQL Server 2014 sp3 is the last version that can support the 2020 and 2021 release. After 2021, you have to upgrade to SQL Server 2016, 2017, or 2019.

After you finish checking the version of SOLIDWORKS PDM, Windows Server OS, and MS SQL Server. You can start to plan the migration schedule.

As PDM consultant, we have to obtain the necessary information for the migration/upgrade PDM Server purpose. Those information will be used during the migration/upgrade process. Such as SQL Server sa password and PDM Admin password.

In order to help you to gather all the necessary information, I design a form for you to fill in before preparing the migration/upgrade.

The migration/upgrade process typically needs five working days, day1 and day5 activities can be done via the remote session, but day2 to day4 activities should be done onsite. The production PDM Server will be down during the migration/ upgrade, usually, the downtime for production server might be 4 to 6 hours on day3.

Below table is the roles and responsibilities for the stakeholders in the migration/upgrade project.

Day Tasks SEACAD Customer
Day 1 Meeting for plan the migration/upgrade Consultant PDM Admin, IT
Meeting for plan the migration/upgrade Consultant R&D Manager, IT
Day 2 Installation, Check-in, Backup, and copy Consultant All users, IT
Day 3 Restore, test, upgrade, test Consultant & Engineer All users, IT
Day 4 Database server Maintenance setup Consultant PDM Admin, IT
Day 5 Monitor and server status report Consultant & Engineer PDM Admin, IT

Below form is for the customer’s reference when preparing the migration/upgrade.

The whole process will require 5 days to complete, with the Scope of Work as below:

[Day 1]

Meeting 1 to 2 times

Meeting with IT manager and R&D manager to plan the process. Pass the installation file and copy into the new server (both new version and old version).

Schedule and inform to all users to know the downtime date.

 [Day 2]

From 9:30am to 5:00 pm (On-site)

  1. Installation the same version of PDM and SQL in the new PDM database server and Archive server. (Around 3 hours) Setup the Ports and the host file.
  2. Engineers must check-in all the files before off work. PDM consultant help to check and solve the file if it CANNOT check in.
  3. If office hour ends at 5 pm, all files must be checked in before 4:30 pm, because The PDM server CANNOT backup and updated when the files are check-out.
  4. Ensure the installation files (new version) are ready on the server and clients’ computers.
  5. Manual backup all the files and copy to the new server. It will need some time to copy (i.e. 100GB data would require 30-60 minutes and so on). We will do this after your office hour.
  6. After 1 to 2 hours remote check the status of copy files.
  7. Check the backup files are completed the copy.

[Day 3]

From 9:30am to 5:00pm (On-site and downtime)

  1. Restore the database backup files in the morning. All users CANNOT login PDM to the PDM but can use the files offline. We will Block log-ins during the restore. Expected downtime about 2hrs.
  2. Configure the SQL Server, Database server, and Archive server.
  3. After restore, we’ll cross-check the following:
  • The server service is running.
  • All users can log in to the server.
  • Can get files from the server.
  • Can transfer the files states.
  1. Upgrade the PDM server. Expected downtime about 3hrs. Downtime after that for each client is about 15-30 minutes for installation.
  2. After upgrade installation, we’ll cross-check the following:
  • The server service is running.
  • All users can log in to the server.
  • Can get files from the server.
  • Can transfer the files states.

[Day 4]

From 9:00am to 5:00pm  (on-site )

  1. Rebuild the SQL Maintenance plans for Database backup. And Check the Backup
  2. Check if all users are using PDM normally.

Complete the PDM server migration and upgrade.

     If all the above is completed, then we could proceed to update SOLIDWORKS.

  [Day 5]

Remote or on-site

  1. Monitor the usage of users.
  2. Monitor the Server database and Archive are running normally.
  3. Monitor SQL Maintenance plans.
  4. Provide the PDM Server Status report after 3 and 6 months.
  5. We have to double confirm with IT the backup schedule works normally.

This process can be a sample for the migration/upgrade project, but the details still need to discuss with your PDM consultant. If you want to migration/upgrade your PDM Server, you can fill in this form and read this document first. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact SEACAD technical support team to arrange a meeting to find out more.