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Thread: Pricing concession on backup PC Cortex licences

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    Automated Home Legend Karam's Avatar
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    Default Pricing concession on backup PC Cortex licences

    Following on from the Windows tablet thread.. If you are considering one of these perhaps as a low cost Cortex back up PC (remember also that Cortex supports auto handover between two PCs connected to the same network) then just to note that we now provide concessioned pricing for such backup PC licences (see our catalogue pages)

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    Automated Home Ninja marcuslee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karam View Post
    Following on from the Windows tablet thread.. If you are considering one of these perhaps as a low cost Cortex back up PC (remember also that Cortex supports auto handover between two PCs connected to the same network) then just to note that we now provide concessioned pricing for such backup PC licences (see our catalogue pages)
    Well that's timely. My Cortex PC died last night (just after midnight), due to (HD initialisation error it would appear. I've cold restarted and it's ok again, however looking to swap in my base mirrored, cold spare Cortex PC.).

    Just out of interest, how does Backup Cortex PC get wired up? Backup Cortex PC, with another PCU interface, then... I guess shared Always on Spur?

    Also in vein of currently needing to swap in my base mirrored cold Cortex PC, other than copying over Log folder, Sounds folder, and Database folder, is there a way to retain all the History (just copy over the History folder)?
    Last edited by marcuslee; 15th April 2015 at 05:45 PM.

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    Automated Home Legend Karam's Avatar
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    Yes for auto handover you will need the backup connected to your IDRANet 'in parallel' i.e via its own PCU and to the always on spur (if you have a system with an IPD spur management structure). The two Cortex's will be aware of each other via messages sent over the network such that handover is managed automatically.

    Yes you can just copy the history folder over. remember that you should use the same database name on both machines otherwise you won't be able to view the history from one on the other since the file names are linked. There is no mecahnism (from ourselves) for automating the process of keeping the files on both machines synchronised so unless you have some external process set up to do this (e.g scheduled backup of files from one PC to the other via LAN, Cloud or whatever) then you should at least be aware to manually copy over the database file after any significant changes to this.

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    Automated Home Ninja marcuslee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karam View Post
    Yes for auto handover you will need the backup connected to your IDRANet 'in parallel' i.e via its own PCU and to the always on spur (if you have a system with an IPD spur management structure). The two Cortex's will be aware of each other via messages sent over the network such that handover is managed automatically.
    And on the Operational front, how do you:
    - make config changes to Cortex, do you only do it on one, and then have to manually stop the network on both and copy the .icd file to the other one?
    - which Cortex PC is acting as the Primary and which the Backup?
    - best configure alerting for when one of them has fallen over?

    Quote Originally Posted by Karam View Post
    Yes you can just copy the history folder over. remember that you should use the same database name on both machines otherwise you won't be able to view the history from one on the other since the file names are linked. There is no mecahnism (from ourselves) for automating the process of keeping the files on both machines synchronised so unless you have some external process set up to do this (e.g scheduled backup of files from one PC to the other via LAN, Cloud or whatever) then you should at least be aware to manually copy over the database file after any significant changes to this.
    Thanks Karam. Also I just noticed how big the History folder is, something like ~1.5GB. Does this have any impact on Cortex when you open a history window for an object (ie is it worth moving some of these offsite to an archive location)?

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    Automated Home Ninja Viv's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marcuslee View Post
    And on the Operational front, how do you:
    - make config changes to Cortex, do you only do it on one, and then have to manually stop the network on both and copy the .icd file to the other one?
    - which Cortex PC is acting as the Primary and which the Backup?
    - best configure alerting for when one of them has fallen over?

    Thanks Karam. Also I just noticed how big the History folder is, something like ~1.5GB. Does this have any impact on Cortex when you open a history window for an object (ie is it worth moving some of these offsite to an archive location)?
    You have two PC's each with their own PCU connected to the network.
    Each PCU has a different address.
    Each PC is aware of the other PC's PCU address.
    Each have their own database which need not be the same.
    You declare which is the Main PC and which is the backup PC.
    You can have both running but only one is actually in control.
    You can start either first.
    Each PC sends a message to the other PC on a regular basis via the Idranet network.
    The backup PC, being aware that the main PC is operational goes into pause mode.
    The backup PC listens to packets from sensors and updates its appropriate objects.
    The backup PC modifies other 'output' objects but does not send packets to the network.
    If the backup PC stops hearing messages from the main PC it comes out of pause mode and allows itself to send packets.
    The network shutdown or startup process are modified if the PC's are aware that the 'other' PC can take control.

    If you choose to have the backup PC normally powered off and you start it, it will go straight to pause mode if the main PC is running OK else it will take control.

    ******************************

    The history data is stored in the History folder.
    Each day is a sperate file.
    When you visit the history for the current day it is the current opened file.
    Having other files in the directory should not impact the response.
    When you look at history using the from-to option e.g. a months worth it reads 31 files or so.
    The only impact of having many files is going to be the windows OS file system, fragmentation etc which should not be a problem.

    Viv.

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    Automated Home Ninja marcuslee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Viv View Post
    You have two PC's each with their own PCU connected to the network.
    Each PCU has a different address.
    Each PC is aware of the other PC's PCU address.
    Each have their own database which need not be the same.
    You declare which is the Main PC and which is the backup PC.
    You can have both running but only one is actually in control.
    You can start either first.
    Each PC sends a message to the other PC on a regular basis via the Idranet network.
    The backup PC, being aware that the main PC is operational goes into pause mode.
    The backup PC listens to packets from sensors and updates its appropriate objects.
    The backup PC modifies other 'output' objects but does not send packets to the network.
    If the backup PC stops hearing messages from the main PC it comes out of pause mode and allows itself to send packets.
    The network shutdown or startup process are modified if the PC's are aware that the 'other' PC can take control.

    If you choose to have the backup PC normally powered off and you start it, it will go straight to pause mode if the main PC is running OK else it will take control.

    ******************************

    The history data is stored in the History folder.
    Each day is a sperate file.
    When you visit the history for the current day it is the current opened file.
    Having other files in the directory should not impact the response.
    When you look at history using the from-to option e.g. a months worth it reads 31 files or so.
    The only impact of having many files is going to be the windows OS file system, fragmentation etc which should not be a problem.

    Viv.

    Thanks for reply Viv.

    So I guess if one wanted like for like failover, as per what Karam said, it's a case of manually making updates to both (or at least finding a time to stop network and copy over the House.icd to the other).

    Also possibly a separate means to alert yourself when one of the PCs has fallen over and needs investigation.

  7. #7
    Automated Home Ninja Viv's Avatar
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    You should not need to stop network to update backup PC.
    Save database on main PC.
    Copy it to backup PC.
    Load it in to Cortex on backup PC.
    The main PC can keep running.

    In our test configuration the backup PC as a tablet did not have camera capture card or telephone modem so these aspects might need modification.

    Viv

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