ArcGIS Desktop Distributed License Setup

Recently, I have encountered an issue on establishing connectivity for my ArcGIS Desktop 9.3 with the license server. With ArcGIS 9.3, the FLEXlm License manager has been upgraded to Macrovision¨s FLEXnet Publisher v11.4. As a result, we will be no longer be able to use existing (old version) license server for the ArcGIS Desktop 9.3 and ArcInfo Workstation 9.3 products. The License Manager that shipped with ArcGIS Desktop 9.2 and ArcInfo Workstation 9.2 products can only be used for 9.2, and prior 9.x, products. The license manager that ships with ArcGIS 9.3 can be used for 9.3 as well as for prior released 9.x products.

we cannot even borrow the license in 9.3.  When using the 9.3 LMTOOLS GUI,  License borrowing is not enabled for the ArcGIS 9.3 release. ESRI planned to enable this feature for a post 9.3 release. (When?????).

When a license server and client machines in a same network then connection will be pretty straight forward. But I want to connect to license manager running in a machine, which is  in a different network, from the development machines. (See the distributed set up figure below) . Generally, going to ArcGIS-> ‘Desktop Administrator’ utility you will be seeing ‘License Manager’ option where you can browse the license server and point the same. But when you are in different network protected by firewall then we cannot simply point to the machine where license manager service running.

distirbuted-setup3Basically, license manager uses TCP/IP connection to connect to license manager and by default it uses Port # 27004. It should be noted that port number #27001-27010 is reserved and allocated for license manager.  If two instance of license manager is running then it is must to determine the exact port which it uses.  Steps to establish the connectivity are given below

  1. First ping the license server and verify whether server is live and getting response.
  2. Open the TCP port # 27004 (for LMGRD) at both the firewalls and verify whether data is being sent and received.
  3. You to have open ArcGIS daemon port too. In order to do that first set constant PORT number for the VENDOR DAEMON. Do that by adding port number after the VENDOR line in the license file:
    VENDOR ARCGIS port=xxxxx  (generally #1025 Port assigned dynamically)
    After that open this port number on your firewall. Click here for ESRI Tech article
  4. Edit the host file to add license server IP along with license server name
  5. Close all ArcGIS programs.
  6. Create a System Environmental Variable in Start > Control Panels >
    System > Advanced: ARCGIS_LICENSE_FILE with value 27004@server_name
  7. Run regedit > My Computer > HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > Software > ESRI >
    License. Change the LICENSE_SERVER variable to @server_name. (Default @Not_set)
  8. Close regedit. Note that both the environmental variable and registry
    change need to be in place for this to work and the “@” symbols are
    required before the server name.
  9. Go to ‘Desktop Administrator’–> License manager utility–> set the server name (it will be appeared when step 6 is done).
  10. Click Apply and OK
  11. Open ArcMap for testing. You need to wait for few minutes, ArcMap opens will intializing “generating ArcID module” and opens successfully.
  12. If problem persists open all ports 27001-27010 at both the firewalls and give a try.
  13. It should be noted that you need use same software product and should have valid license with proper expiry date.
  14. If you are getting Flexnet license error, check the error code details in license manager help to determine the basic cause for the issue and then trouble shoot.
  15. You can verify the successfull connection in LMI UI tools.

Advance license manager topic in help section clearly describes about Port and connection details.  First go through help section for better understanding. We can able to connect to license manager using remote desktop option as well as through VPN. ESRI post is here for further clarifications. Technical articles on 9.3 license issues is here. Hope this helps.

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