Earlier this week we covered part one of migrating Fortis SE to a new server. Now we are getting to the nitty gritty. We're moving images and databases here.
Attach or install the Fortis databases if you have moved or reinstalled your Database Server.
Fortis SE or Fortis Embedded:
Open the dbs.ini from the old server and note the DBdir= value in [DBSetup] section.
Navigate to this directory on the old Database Server.
Note: In order to copy the data files, the databases must not be in use by SQL Server at the time. Consult with a SQL Server administrator to facilitate this.
Copy the .mdf and .ldf files corresponding to the names of the databases used in Fortis and move them to the directory noted in the DBdir= value of the dbs.ini on the new Database Server.
Again, in the dbs.ini of the old server, note that each database has a section denoted by its name in square brackets, e.g.: [Records]. Within each section there will be an equal pair of values, LogFilePath= and FullTextInfo=. This directory is typically known as the Related files directory. Copy these directories to an equivalent location on the new server.
Log into the Database Administration Station, hit “Open DB,” and click the “Install..” button.
Type in or choose the name of the database. In most cases, this will consist of the “dbname” portion of dbname.mdf.
For the related database files directory, give the new location of the corresponding Related files directory.
Hit “OK” and your database will be installed.
Note: There are circumstances which may prevent the Install Database function from recognizing the files in the new DBdir= directory. If this is the case, refer to the reference section “Attaching Fortis databases to a new SQL Server”. After attaching the database, run the Install Database command once more. The attached database will now appear in the drop-down list.
In the dbs.ini of the old server, note that each database has a section denoted by its name in square brackets, e.g.: [Records]. Within each section there will be an equal pair of values, LogFilePath= and FullTextInfo=. This directory is typically known as the Related files directory. Copy these directories to an equivalent location on the new server.
Copy the dbs.ini file from the old SYDATA directory to the new one.
Edit all references to the old server in the new dbs.ini file to reflect the server change. These values typically are multiple instances of SERVER=, FullTextInfo=, and LogFilePath=.
After editing the dbs.ini file, the Fortis workstations will now show the moved databases.
Correct the image archive locations in the database if they are to be moved.
Copy your image archive directories to the new server.
Log into the Database Administration Station and open the database.
Change the archiving location for all future documents.
In the Document Explorer window, right-click and get the properties of the root folder of the database.
Under the Archive tab, update the archive path to reflect the new location of the image archive. Hit “OK” to exit the folder properties window.
These steps must be repeated for any folder in the database that has an archive location set in its Archive tab. When an archiving location is blank in a folder’s properties, it will inherit the location from its parent folder.
Update the archive path for all existing documents.
In the Database Administration Station, choose Tools>Update Archive Path. For instructions on how to use this tool, consult the documentation.
To confirm that the command has worked, open the Update Archive Path tool once more and check to make sure that any paths pointing to the old server are gone. There are some configurations where you may see the an old path still appear on the list even though the tool had definitely run on that path previously. Simply repeat the steps above until the old path does not appear in the original archive list.
Set up your backup solution for the new server.
Deploy the remaining workstations, using the Fortis Installation Guide as a reference.
See, that isn't too bad. No it is. Call me and I'll do it for you if you'd like.
Let me know if you'd like a quick update on the state of the art in electronic document management. Click below for a 15 minute briefing.
How to migrate your Fortis software to a new machine!
We've been selling and supporting Fortis records management applications and document management software for about 4 years. Our earliest customers are migrating to new hardware like crazy now and we are getting a lot of requests for help in migration.
If you are planning on a move to Windows 7 64 bit and/or Windows Server 2008 any time soon, you'll need this article.
I'll try to keep it simple.
- Perform a new Fortis installation on the new server using the instructions provided in the Fortis Installation Guide.
- Apply any applicable service packs to Fortis.
- Perform a workstation setup on one machine to facilitate the rest of the migration.
- Before transferring any files whatsoever, make a complete backup copy of both the Fortis and FortisDT directories.
- Transfer users from the previous installation. (Note: Immediately after an installation, the default password for the SYSADM user is “westtech#1”.)
- Log into the System Administration Station and change the SYSADM password to match that which you have in your old installation.
- Exit Fortis and copy the following files and directories from the SYSDATA directory of the old server to the same directory on the new server: users.dat, inbaskets.dat, ldap.ini, the OBJECT directory
- Correct the location of the In Baskets, if they are to be moved. It is recommended that all In Baskets be cleared of any files as this will make the process simpler.
- Log into the System Administration station and open the In Baskets window.
- Click on the “Def. Path” grey button or choose “Default In Basket Path” from the menu. Adjust this path to reflect the new default location for In Baskets. Note: When adjusting the Default In Basket Path, any In Basket that was previously set to use the default location will automatically switch to the location it had been using before the Default Path was changed. “Use default location” will become deselected.
- Open each individual In Basket and check “Use default location” to any In Basket that had previously been using the default location on the old server. This will create a new folder in the new default location on the new server.
- Copy any files that were present in In Baskets on the old server to the corresponding In Basket folder on the new server.
That's all I can stand writing today. Steps 1-12 will get your users, security permissions, preferences inbaskets and more moved into your new installation. The second part iwll move the database and the images. I'll get that one out later this week.
If you need some help with your migration or if you'd like a webinar introduction to electronic document imaging, follow the link below.
Last week we got started talking about the steps your organization can take to improve adoption rates and increase ROI from your electronic document management investment
. You can read that article here
. Let's not waste any time getting to part 2.
Pick biggest target first to get return on investment (ROI).
After running a very small test for about 2 weeks (Making your I.T. department paperless for instance) it’s time to go live. I recommend going from largest to smallest when choosing departments or processes to take electronic. This allows you to recoup your EDM investment costs as quickly as possible. Training costs are largely fixed, one on one instruction doesn't cost much less than classroom training for twenty for example. Installation costs, hardware costs, storage costs and more have very low marginal costs, so roll this out to your biggest targets first. Some suggestions are:
- Accounts Payable is always a paper hog with a ton of handling expenses. This one is normally the big dog in manufacturing environments.
- Medical records. Of course this is the big target in healthcare.
- HR is a great opportunity to recover electronic document imaging investments. HR is a great opportunity to save a ton of money by using online forms. Employee evaluations, quarterly performance reviews and more can be made completely paperless in moments. Learn about the possibilities with a video demo here.
Rollout the next department as soon as possible. Don't be paralyzed by making the first implementation perfect, as soon as man hours available for training, IT services and scanning capacity, move to your next target. Again, the more users and document types you get on the EDM, the sooner you recoup your investment.
Know that use and configuration will change. Make sure you budget for configuration changes and additional training over time. With use and familiarity your users will find additional uses and changes that will be very beneficial to your company. Make sure you have the resources available to take advantage of this organic "crowd sourced" refinement of your digital imaging project. I promise there are problem areas you don't know about.
Make Scanners readily available. Inexpensive personal scanners like the Fujitsu Scan snap and Canon P-150 should be on every desk. These scanners are just a couple of hundred bucks and will make everyone much happier with the program. We find that the farther a user has to walk to get to a scanner, the more likely they are to "get behind" in scanning and adopting imaging.
Send someone to school for training. Develop an in house expert. You absolutely do not want to be dependent on software vendor to make changes, do training or analysis on your document imaging system. The software lines we carry (Paperflow, ImageSilo, Fortis, Filebound) offer inexpensive online certifications for users. They are GOLD. For a small expense you buy your company an enormous amount of flexibility.
Repetitive processes need standard operating procedures written. Scanning mail, AP, patient chart backlog scanning and other repetitive processes need a custom SOP for your company. The manuals and documentation for the software package you purchase won't cover the particulars of your operation. For an example of an operation procedure to be used in conjunction with your document imaging system you can download a sample procedure for scanning a file room here.
For more of our tips check out our old blog post: Tips for Getting a Successful EDM Adoption.
There is a lot of information available about transitioning hardcopy paper storage to electronic document management (EDM). If you've taken the cdia+(Certified Document Imaging Architect ) you've been made sick with this information and probably struggle to figure out how to apply these practices in the real world.
Unfortunately most small businesses don't have the resources available to faithfully & fully follow those best practice implementation guidelines. They don't have the human resources to create committees, have full time project managers, to name a few. Moreover, they just want to get the job done, period.
In the face of that reality we have created a quick reference guideline that maximizes adoption rates by utilizing the resources that are actually available to small businesses.
They are.........Drum Roll Please.
Training Training Training
You truly can’t over emphasize the importance of training you’re employees in this area. They’ve been doing their work using the same process for years and years. When we implement a paperless office solution, we need to train users enough that we start to replace their ingrained work habits. For accounting personnel using a new EDM, I recommend small group training for up to four hours on day one, four hours on day three, one hour refreshers once per week for the next two weeks then one hour refreshers on a quarterly basis thereafter. The two four hour sessions should be in person, the refreshers work just fine with webinars. It’s also helpful if your software vendor can provide you with YouTube videos for your user’s reference.
Put EDM on job description
If a user is supposed to be using EDM in the course of their work then incorporate that into their job description. Make adoption and efficient use of the document system part of the employee review process; as a consequence, management has the opportunity to sit down with the employee on a quarterly basis and discuss their proficiency.
Develop a strategy for integrating the old backlog
It’s crucial to develop a seamless strategy for incorporating the backlog of old analog/paper documents into the EDM. After all, the day before the roll out date all of the work was being done on paper. Implementations can get messy when a user was working with a paper contract on Friday, go live the following Monday, and continue to work with paper. There is no clean break there.
We’ve developed a program for backlog conversion of in house file rooms and working documents. This isn’t a task that can be taken lightly. We recommend a scan-on-demand approach, this way you scan only what you need. There are a lot of moving parts and we’ve figured it out for you. You can learn from our experience (mistakes) by hitting the button below to check out our backlog scanning procedure.
Next week we’ll be posting the rest of our pointers for implementing EDM. Sign up below for email alerts or our RSS feed so you won’t miss it.
We've finally gotten a nice, concise demo video of some of the basic capabilities I would be looking for in an EDM (electronic document management system) if I were buying right now.
The demo is of Fortis Electronic document management software. It's developed by Westbrook Technologies. I believe it is the best compromise between usability and capability in a document imaging system.
Even if you aren't interested in Fortis, but just wonder what a paperless office environment might look like, check out the video.
In the next couple of weeks we'll be rolling out demos for some other bits that make life in the office a lot easier.
If you'd like to get started going paperless, click below and we'll get started by scanning 500 pages for you for free.