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  1. #1
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    SilkMeter & firewalls

    I guess some of you actually HAVE moved to Silk 5.5. While I don't see any good reason to upgrade yet, I thought I should start to prepare for it.

    Some of our test machines are setup outside of our firewall. Others are connected with funky legacy networking hardware (Appletalk, token ring ...)

    What problems does this pose for the network-connected SilkMeter licensing ?

    Can separate license servers be run independently on each of these machines ?

    Will this be a huge problem when I need to move these licenses back and forth ? (We only run automated testware on these machines on rare occasions)


    ------------------
    Rob Kapteyn
    Rob Kapteyn, CSTE
    RobKapteyn@gmail.com

  2. #2
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    Re: SilkMeter & firewalls

    In my experience if you can't ping it, you can't get licenses from it.

    I've played around a little with the Check-Out/Check-In features of SilkMeter that allows a standalone PC to run SilkTest. However, the machine to be standalone needs to connect to the main license server in order to check out a license. I doubt this would work, but it would be interesting to see if a laptop could check out a license, then network the laptop with a remote machine and check out the license from the laptop.

    I ended up getting a license policy file for home use and getting a new license policy file for work with one less license. Now that I am leaving to go to another company, though, I've had to go through all the licensing rigamarole again. Fortunately this is an area where Segue really shines. I email Segue, tell them what I need, fax a document certifying I have deinstalled all other license files, and within 24 hours I've got a new policy file.

    Soooo....if you can get SilkMeter installed on a publicly visible machine you should, theoretically, be able to check out licenses anywhere. But that leaves obvious security concerns which at my present location are unacceptable.

    Hope this helps,
    Steve

    ------------------
    Oh, by the way - yes you can have multiple SilkMeter installations. Just let Segue know how you need the licenses split and they'll send you a file for each server. You can edit the configuration information on a client machine to point to another license server if need be without reinstalling SilkTest.


    [This message has been edited by SteveC (edited 08-07-2001).]

  3. #3
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    Re: SilkMeter & firewalls

    SteveC:
    Thanks for your detailed answer.

    As far as the "split" licenses go -- Is it practical to run separate SilkMeter license servers, each with 1 license, on every computer that runs SilkTest ?
    What is the overhead required for SilkMeter ?
    Do crashes corrupt the licenses ?

    I can see an advantage to SilkMeter in that you can pay for a few licenses and can test on many different computers.
    At my last job, we tested every software release on all 9 versions of Windoze. SilkMeter would have been wonderful then.

    Now, I am testing in-house client/server applications that connect through various types of networks to the outside world.
    All of our machines run the same OS. Some of our automated tests deliberately disrupt network connections as part of failover and recovery testing. SilkMeter gives me nothing but a huge new problem -- maintaining a connection for the license server.

    ------------------
    Rob Kapteyn
    Rob Kapteyn, CSTE
    RobKapteyn@gmail.com

  4. #4
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    Re: SilkMeter & firewalls

    Hi Rob,

    According to Task Manager, the SilkMeter service uses 2008K of RAM. Not too bad. I haven't seen any corruption yet through a few crashes, but the nice thing is that the license policy is a file - it can be backed up. What I have done is put license policy files on a network drive that is backed up to tape. That way if anything should ever go wrong with the license server, I can just reinstall if necessary, and/or import the license policy file.

    To tell you the truth, I don't think getting a license for each machine is the way to go unless there's no way around it. You would think that a couple or few license policy files are not that much to manage, but they can get jumbled just as much as having multiple browsers on many machines. In other words, it's easy to get into a scenario where you get some new policy files and start the changeover process only to get interrupted. Then it becomes a question of what is where, and for that a task list really helps.

    If you have to get a license for each machine, you could possibly arrange it with Segue where you have licenses for those remote machines and two policy files for the main SilkMeter server. One policy file would be for all licenses and another would be for all licenses minus whatever you need for the remotes. In that case you could notify Segue and send them any appropriate documentation so they know when you are switching back and forth. I would be willing to bet you'd get audited at some point, but as with the rest of life, if you're doing nothing wrong there's nothing to worry about, right?

    Please keep us posted as to what you work out.

    Thanks,
    Steve

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  5. #5
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    Re: SilkMeter & firewalls

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SteveC:
    In my experience if you can't ping it, you can't get licenses from it.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Can you (or anyone) provide any ideas of what's going on when you can ping the server, but can't get licenses from it? Our system is distributed across the nation in two main locations, and the rest of us telecommute from various locations. Over the weekend, all of our servers were put behind a new firewall and as of today we still can't figure out what SilkMeter needs to see us "outsiders" through the firewall.


    ------------------
    Kills bugs dead
    Kills bugs dead

  6. #6
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    Re: SilkMeter & firewalls

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by raider:
    Can you (or anyone) provide any ideas of what's going on when you can ping the server, but can't get licenses from it? Our system is distributed across the nation in two main locations, and the rest of us telecommute from various locations. Over the weekend, all of our servers were put behind a new firewall and as of today we still can't figure out what SilkMeter needs to see us "outsiders" through the firewall.


    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    The client machine simply needs to be able to establish a TCP connection to port 5461 (default, but configurable) on the SilkMeter license server.

    This should be easily handled in any firewall setup.

    Qube :-)

  7. #7
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    Re: SilkMeter & firewalls

    from SteveC:
    "it would be interesting to see if a laptop could check out a license, then network the laptop with a remote machine and check out the license from the laptop."
    my answer: Nope, can't do that. A license can only be checked out from the machine that has the policy file installed on it.

    from RobKapteyn:
    "Do crashes corrupt the licenses?....Some of our automated tests deliberately disrupt network connections as part of failover and recovery testing. SilkMeter gives me nothing but a huge new problem -- maintaining a connection for the license server."
    my response: In my experience, if a SilkTest machine logs on, then the SilkMeter server is rebooted, the SilkTest machine will continue to run scripting (or do whatever it wants) with no interruption in service. (And certainly the license is not corrupted.) The communication between the two machines isn't constant; SilkMeter isn't that smart. (Just don't try to *log onto* SilkTest unless the server is back up and running, of course.) Since you're deliberately interrupting your network, why not consider the following scenario: Try to run everything off the server. If the networking interruption really does turn out to be a problem for you, add the following enhancement: Keeping one multi-user policy file on your main SilkMeter server, install SilkTest *and* SilkMeter on a bunch of other machines. When one of those machines needs to run testing during a time when the network will be interrupted, have it check out a temporary license, and release the license back when the testing is done. That way you maximize your $$$ investment in licenses, and also maximize your safety.

    from raider:
    "Can you (or anyone) provide any ideas of what's going on when you can ping the server, but can't get licenses from it? Our system is distributed across the nation in two main locations, and the rest of us telecommute from various locations. Over the weekend, all of our servers were put behind a new firewall and as of today we still can't figure out what SilkMeter needs to see us "outsiders" through the firewall."
    my response: Some people have had to add a listing to their hosts file (see previous postings in this discussion) but beyond that, whoever set up your firewall should find this an easy adjustment to make. If your administrator sets up the firewall to allow outsiders access to the SilkMeter machine and/or port, you are supposed to be able to access the server from anywhere in the world. Sorry that answer wasn't very interesting.

    AG

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    [This message has been edited by agroves (edited 07-09-2002).]

  8. #8
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    Re: SilkMeter & firewalls

    Thanks guys. As far as I can tell, we have the 5461 port configured properly, but still aren't connecting. Any other ideas?

    agroves-I haven't done much networking in the last couple of years, but I thought host files had been done away with? Is this a workaround?

    [This message has been edited by raider (edited 07-09-2002).]
    Kills bugs dead

  9. #9
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    Re: SilkMeter & firewalls

    SEGUE WISHLIST:

    An easier means of checking out a remote license!!!!

    The current method is absurd.

    ------------------

  10. #10
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    Re: SilkMeter & firewalls

    <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by raider:
    Thanks guys. As far as I can tell, we have the 5461 port configured properly, but still aren't connecting. Any other ideas?

    [This message has been edited by raider (edited 07-09-2002).]
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    Are you able to ping by name, or just IP? Are your *.ref files in (most likely) c:\Program Files\Segue\cfg referencing the license server by name or by IP? It could be a DNS issue, and you right be able to fix it by changing the files to use the IP address rather than the name.


    ------------------
    Tom
    Tom

 

 

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