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ColdFusion 9 has added a new AIR-based application called the Server Manager. The Server Manager allows you to remotely connect to and manage multiple ColdFusion installations. The Server Manager is included with the ColdFusion Developer Edition and to install the Server Manager go to your ColdFusion web root, which on the Mac is under Applications/ColdFusion 9/ wwwroot, and there is a Server Manager folder under CFIDE.
Double-click the AIR installation file and install will begin. If you haven't already installed AIR, it will prompt you to install AIR application itself. Click Install and just accept all the defaults. On the Mac you'll need to punch in your password to give it permission to install. After the installation is complete, the Server Manager will start up and you'll put in a master password. This master password is for the Server Manager itself.
Because the Server Manager stores our credentials to connect all of your ColdFusion servers, you want to make sure this is good and secure. So once the Server Manager is open, you'll see a blank screen where all of your servers will eventually be. In the upper left-hand corner we click the plus icon to add a new server. You'll specify a friendly server name, the host to connect to your server, in our case localhost, and the port that it's installed on. For the login information enter your RDS username and password and click Apply.
The Server Manager will then connect to your server and tell you how long it's been online. If there are any current alerts and warnings, whether you are actually logged in or not, and then the version of the server you're connected to. On the left-hand side you can see all of the main categories of ColdFusion Administrator. Data Sources, Mappings, Scheduled Tasks, anything that you would normally do through the ColdFusion Administrator is now available to you inside the Server Manager. To edit any of the information on the left-hand side, you can either right-click or double-click depending on the selection to get access.
For example, for Data Sources if I right- click, I can choose Verify Data Sources. It will go out, check, and make sure that every data source is good and then give me a status icon that shows me whether or not it passed or failed. We'll click OK and I can see that all my data sources are green, so I know that they are good. If I want to add a new data source, I can right-click on Data Sources, click Add, fill in my information, click Next, and I have all the same information I would have inside the ColdFusion Administrator.
Let's cancel this dialog. And while that's interesting in itself, where the Server Manager really becomes useful is managing multiple servers. I have another machine set up here. We'll click plus and I'll add my Windows server that's over in the other room. I'll enter in its IP address. It's also running the Developer Edition on Port 8500. I'll put in my admin username and password. Click Apply and I can now see my Windows server sitting over in the room.
It has been running for two days non-stop, and it's also running the Developer Edition. Now this is easy enough if I have two servers, but in my regular job I have closer to the five or six, which are grouped into production and development systems. So inside the Server Manager I can define groups for each of my servers. So at the top, I'll choose Groups and click Add and let's assume that these are all development systems. Click Apply and now I have a new group up here, which has no servers in it.
If I go back to All Servers, right- click on Local Development and choose Edit, at the bottom I'll see all my groups. I'll check Development and click Apply and do the same for my Windows server. Right-click, choose Edit, and I'll assign it to the development group. Now if I click on Development, I can see both of my servers here. One of the hard things about managing multiple servers is making sure that they are configured correctly.
For example, I have three servers in my production environment. I want to make sure that they all have the same data sources, the same mail settings, etcetera. If I right-click on a server, I can choose Diff With and select a server to compare it with. In this case I am going to compare it to Local Development and I can choose which items I want to compare. In this case I only want to compare data sources JVM and Mail. I'll click Next. The Server Manager will go out and take a look at both of my servers and then tell me what's what.
For example, I can see on the Windows server, it's missing all of the sample databases. For my JVM I can see that they are both set to use 512 megabytes of RAM and for my Mail Settings I can see that neither of them has anything to find. This allows me to quickly take a look in my servers and see exactly what needs to be changed and where. Now that you have the Server Manager installed and hooked to your ColdFusion installations, you should be able to easily view, update, and manage your ColdFusion installs. The next step is to learn how to use the Server Manager to keep an eye on the health of your servers.
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