7 Replies Latest reply on Sep 29, 2015 8:34 AM by melstrom

    FMS 14 deployment issues



      FMS 14 deployment issues

      Your post

      Nearly a week into setting up FMS Server 14 I still find myself wishing there were a Half-Blood Prince version (Harry Potter reference there) of the FileMaker 14 setup guide. There are just huge leaps made in the assumptions about what the user knows. I need someone to fill in the missing instructions. What should be a step by step setup guide says things like, "check your settings and try again" yet it never says what the settings should be or how to find out what they should be. But I digress...

      My issues include:

      1. WebDirect was working fine in FMS 13, and immediately upon setting up the WebDirect deployment in FMS 14, I get an error saying the connection was refused. The only way I could proceed with deployment was to disable WebDirect. All the directions I have found say that if it doesn't work I should fix it so that it does. Not very helpful.

      2. I can't access the admin console from a remote machine anymore either. I have a feeling this issue may be related to the first, but I don't know where to start.

      3. I have recently added an FQDN when I created my custom SSL certificate when Filemaker removed support for it's own several weeks ago with the final release of FMS 13. The new domain and SSL certificate worked fine in FMP 13 and FMG 13 (I was only able to accomplish that thanks to you guys in the community. The FileMaker documentation on how to accomplish all of that was equally presumptive and esoteric). Since updating to FMS 14 the SSL certificate stopped working. I was able to fix that by getting the certificate re-issued and re-installing it, no thanks to the FM documentation that didn't mention any of this as a step in the update process. Now it is working again in FMP 14, but FMG 14 says it can not verify the certificate.

      Additional info: My server is in a co-location data center and there is no firewall or router in front of it, so all ports are open according to the support team at the data center.

      Thanks for the help.

        • 1. Re: FMS 14 deployment issues

          Wayne Muelver:


          Thank you for the post.


          We will need a little more information about your setup before I can suggest how to proceed:


          1. What is the operating system of the FileMaker Server computer?

          2. What are the hardware specifications (CPU, RAM) of the computer?

          3. What specific guides or knowledge base articles were you referencing?


          FileMaker® Server14 Getting Started Guide


          Note: Chapter 6 of the above guide is “Upgrading or moving an existing installation”; however, reading the entire guide is recommended.


          FileMaker Network Security and SSL - Overview


          Importing an existing SSL certificate into FileMaker Server


          Note: The process of importing an SSL certificate was simplified in FileMaker Server 14.0.1.



          FileMaker, Inc.

          • 2. Re: FMS 14 deployment issues


            1. OSX 10.10.3

            2. 2 GHz Intel Core i7, 16 GB 1333 MHz DDR3, dedicated machine.

            3. FileMaker Server14 Getting started guide from the bundled PDF, and for good measure, the FMS help menu which both unfortunately  provide no troubleshooting steps for these issues. Not even the troubleshooting page has actual trouble shooting steps. I did follow the steps in chapter 6 for the upgrade instructions for mac, but it never explained anything about having to replace a custom SSL certificate. It did however say to make a copy of all the databases in the old file for some reason. I did that but it was apparently a wasted effort since all of the files showed up in the new install by themselves.  I have also referenced the FMS 14 WebDirect guide. No luck there either. The Importing an existing SSL certificate instructions are not valid, because that only applies to installing an existing certificate in the same version that created the original signing request. I had to create a new signing request and have the certificate re-issued. Besides that, there are whole swaths of the process that are missing from the documentation. Like the fact for example that in order to save the certificate file with Text edit in the correct file format you have to first disable rich text. Yeah. That silly one took 3 days to figure out.


            • 3. Re: FMS 14 deployment issues

              Wayne Muelver:


              Thank you for the reply.


              “it never explained anything about having to replace a custom SSL certificate.”


              The documentation for FileMaker Server assumes a clean installation and not an upgrade installation. Uninstalling will remove the previous SSL certificate. 


              “It did however say to make a copy of all the databases in the old file for some reason.”


              The reason to backup the databases is that in order to perform a truly clean installation:


              1. Uninstall FileMaker Server

              2. Remove or rename the FileMaker Server folder 

              3. Reinstall

              4. Upload the databases.

              5. Import the SSL certificate using the new method in the Admin Console (see article above).


              Note: The same SSL certificate should work and there should not be a need to create a new signing request or have the certificate re-issued.


              After following the steps above, the WebDirect issue should also be resolved. 


              Additionally, I forwarded your comments to our Documentation department. Please keep me updated with any progress. 



              FileMaker, Inc.

              • 4. Re: FMS 14 deployment issues


                Your step #2 is not in the documentation, nor is there an explanation about the documentation assuming a "clean installation" or how it defines that. Like I said earlier. The documentation assumes a lot of things and that is counter productive to the purpose of documentation. Besides, I was not following the first time install instructions. I was following the upgrade instructions. After completing those instructions, my signed certificate file was gone, so I had to get a new one. If it can in fact be re-used then perhaps the documentation should instruct the user to backup the signed certificate file as well before performing the uninstall. In the mean time, The SSL certificate verification issue with FM Go seems to have resolved itself since my last post a few days ago. I don't know what that is all about. Maybe there is some kind of delay on the Certificate Signing Authority's end following the re-issue. From the sounds of things in your post, it looks like you are recommending a re-install of FMS to resolve my WebDirect (and Remote Admin Console?) issues. I will give that a try and let you know. It should be easier now that I know some of the nuances of what is and is not included in the documentation.


                • 5. Re: FMS 14 deployment issues



                  So, I followed your directions and removed my Signed SSL Certificate and the Server Key file from the CStore folder. Then removed all of the databases from the databases folder. Then uninstalled FMS. Then removed the entire Filemaker Server folder from the root library folder. Then I re-installed. I was then able to configure the deployment with WebDirect successfully. However, the new built in SSL Certificate import feature did not work for me because it asked for a password. I don't know what that it is. I don't remember being asked to create one in the process of setting up the SSL certificate with the certificate signing authority that I used. I thought that is what the Server Key file is for. So anyway, I moved those files back into the new CStore folder and then I used the terminal command to import the certificate and that worked fine. FMP, FMG, WebDirect and the Remote Admin console all work as expected now and all recognize the signed certificate. I hope this exchange helps to improve the documentation and is of use to others in the forum.


                  • 6. Re: FMS 14 deployment issues

                    Sept 28, 2015

                    I have been tearing my hair out (off and on) for nearly 2 years, ever since FMS 13 was released, being unable to get deployment of WebDirect to work, failing every time with the "connection refused" error. I've seen dozens of posts around the Internet, none ever solving the problem; utter frustration here over confusion between OS X's native apache and whatever FMS (I guess) installs - do I need to cripple OS X's in order to get WebDirect to work?  Your route of dealing with a custom SSL certificate is the first mention I've seen of that as the source of the problem (I guess - b/c  your new one seems to have been the fix?). 

                    I have only a developer license for FMS via an FDS subscription - no extensive commercial deployment. Mac Mini (mid 2010) running Yosemite 10.10.5, intended just for running FMS; clean install of OS. But I have databases of my own I need to access via WebDirect if they are to be of use to me at all.  Could you point me to how to get the required custom SSL certificate? I am at my wits end.  Please, someone, I need a solution  :-(.

                    ==Mel Strom

                    • 7. Re: FMS 14 deployment issues

                      Sept 29, 2015

                      After nearly 2 years of FMS13 & FMS14 failure, this morning deployment of FMS14 with WebDirect on the Yosemite 10.10.5 Mac Mini succeeded.  I am very relieved, even happy.  There is a very disappointing aspect to the success, however:  I have no idea what the solution was.  I followed up to investigate the custom SSL certificate matter - and did see now the link to FileMaker's help-page list of supported certs -  but have not purchased or installed any. I did not even reboot the machine before this morning's installation+deployment attempt. 

                      How did I prep the machine?  1) shut down Yosemite's instance of apache.  Earlier I had edited its config to listen on 800 instead of 80 (to leave 80 free for FMS). But I thought I had done that before, too.   2)  As I had earlier tried several times to install/deploy, in turn, FMS14 and FMS13 on the Mini, I ran each of the Uninstaller applications from the /Library/Application Support/FileMaker Server  directory after each unsuccessful attempt.   But I had done the same "uninstalls" earlier, too.  3)  Having stumbled in my many Web searches on references to Java version problems (unrelated to WebDirect deployment??  don't know), I installed *both* the very latest Oracle Java *and* the (new?) old Apple-supplied JavaforOSX (named something like Java 2015-1000 when you run the installer), which is, I think, a version of Java 6 that Apple now provides because the newer/newest ones apparently lack some piece that is sometimes, for some processes, needed.  

                      I do not think I did anything else after the failures the day before.  But today it worked. I wish I could provide a tip for others who have met the same repeated failures I have, but alas, I cannot.

                      Thanks very much for your attention, though!

                      ==Mel Strom