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Can Inventory Beacons Be Moved From One FNMS Server to Another Without Reinstalling The Beacon Code? Is That a Valid Use Case?

Hi all ...

Last week, I needed to retire an FNMS server in a DEV environment with a deprecated Windows operating system and replace it with a new server.  FNMS on both servers was the same version (2022R1).  The new server would use the same SQL databases as the old server, meaning, the new server would pick up where the old one left off.  I used the same service account on the new server as the old server so passwords would not need to be changed.  The new FNMS server would have a different hostname than the server being retired.

I set up the new server and installed FNMS on it.  Then I stopped FNMS on the old server, as well as the two inventory beacons that connected to it, and ran the Powershell Configuration on the new server using the forceUpdateConfig parameter. I pointed the new FNMS server to the existing databases and configuration completed successfully.  When I brought up the new FNMS server, it properly used the existing databases and everything was working properly.

I then went to the Inventory Beacons.  With the Beacons still down, I found the entry in the registry where the URLs are listed for the parent connection, and changed them to use the new FNMS server's name.  The Beacons did not run with the System account; they are configured to run using the service account.

I then started the Inventory Beacon and it immediately started failing with failed authorization messages, to the point where I actually locked out the service account.  I didn't understand why this was happening, as I didn't change the password for the service account.  The only way I was able to "recover" from this was to uninstall the Inventory Beacon code, delete all the artifacts (folders, registry entries, IIS sites) and reinstall the Inventory Beacon code. I also restored the business adapters; at first they didn't work and then I saw that the adapters had an encrypted password in them (because they were configured to run as the service account).  I created a dummy one that created the "right" encrypted password in the dummy adapter's XML file and replaced that password in the restored business adapters.  All business adapters, as well as the Beacon itself, worked well after that.  Even though I didn't change the service account password, something about that encrypted password did change.

I did see, in the registry entries for the Inventory Beacon, an entry for a beacon password that appeared to be encrypted.  I assumed that if I didn't change the service account password, that this value would remain the same, and connectivity would "magically" happen once I changed the URLs for the parent connection, but that was not the case.  In the past, when I replaced the FNMS server with a new one and used the same hostname for both, I didn't run into any issues with Inventory Beacons that I did here.

So what did I do wrong, or fail to do?  Or, given the fact that I had different hostnames for the FNMS server, was my assumption an invalid one and what I thought I could do was not viable?


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