Change database server instance

This FHIT utility updates all necessary web.config files if the name of the database server or server instance has changed. This tool should be run by a FileHold technician or qualified IT administrator. You require must have local Windows administration permissions for the FileHold server.

FHIT does not validate the database instance name or the database prefix you provide. It simply updates database connection strings. You should run the health checker after making a change to ensure the system is operating correctly.

Change DB server instance

  1. Run FHIT and select Actions > Change DB Server instance.
  2. Fill out the three required fields:
    • Directory - The default value is normally correct: C:\Program Files\FileHold Systems\Application Server.
    • Database instance name - Depending how your SQL server was configured this may only require the server name or it may require the server name and the instance name like <servername>\<instancename>.
    • Database prefix - Since version 14.1 it has been possible to change the prefix of the names of the FileHold databases to allow more than one FileHold system to coexist on the same database server. It does this by allowing up to 5 characters as a prefix to each database name. By default the prefix is "ch_".
  3. Click Next >. The dialog will list all the web.config files that will be changed.
  4. Click Change.
  5. Check the dialog for errors.

By default, SQL Express will install with a instance name of Express. For example, if your SQL server name is MyServer the database instance name you will need to provide FHIT is MyServer\Express.

Example: Moving your databases to a new server

This example is provided for your information only. It is not intended to cover every possible case for moving databases.

You will need SQL administration permissions to move your databases. If your log files are large you should plan to do full backups and shrink the log files. Check your SQL documentation for information on management and maintenance plans of log files.

  • Ensure that on new Microsoft SQL Server that you are running a supported version, and that the FH_Service has security login permissions set in the SQL Management Studio.
  • The FH_Service account must be a domain account, and must have the necessary permissions.
  • Please check the Server Preparation Guide for more details, this is included with the Server Installation Kit.

Original server\instance

  1. Ensure all users are logged off from FileHold.
  2. Stop FH App Pool in IIS Admin.
  3. Backup all FileHold databases. Make sure you choose verify in SQL Management Studio.
  • In FileHold 14 or higher there are 4 databases. They may begin with CH_ or the prefix provided at installation time: ch_documentrepository, ch_fulltextsearch, ch_librarymanager, ch_userrolemanager
  1. Verify these backups exist by finding them in the backup location designated.
  2. Stop the following services:
  • Stop FHURM Instance (FileHold 14 or lower).
  • Stop FileHold Workflow Instance (FileHold 12 or lower). It is an optional feature of FileHold and may be disabled, if so ignore this step.
  • Stop World Wide Web Publishing Service.
  1. Detach all 4 databases from the SQL Management Studio.

New server\instance

  1. Copy all 4 databases and Log Files to the new server

Do not MOVE these files use COPY instead. This should help to ensure the destination permissions are set correctly. Instead of Windows Explorer, consider using a robust tool for copying the files that can verify the copy such as FASTCOPY.

  1. Attach all 4 or 5 databases and log files in the new Server's SQL Management Studio
  • Confirm that the domain\FH_Service account is still the DB Owner of all 4 or 5 databases.
  • Update the database compatibility level.
  1. Run the FH Instrumentation utility > Change DB Server Instance.


  1. Fill out the new MS SQL DB Server name or DB Server Name \ Instance name if the FileHold databases are within a specific MS SQL Instance.

  1. Click Change. This will update all web.config files used in the FileHold server application so that the Web services can communicate with the new location of the Database Server.

On the FileHold Server

  1. Start FHURM Service (FileHold 14 or lower)
  2. Start FH Workflow Service if you use the Workflow feature. (FileHold 12 or lower).
  3. Start World Wide Web Publishing Service.
  4. Start FH App Pool in IIS Manager.
  5. Run the Health Checker

If the health checker is all green and yellow, then proceed to testing

  1. Login to FileHold.
  2. Add a document.
  3. Search for a document.
  4. Check out and Check in a document.
  5. Launch and Complete a Workflow if you have this option.

Ensure that the Databases, Database Log Files, and the FileHoldData storage path which includes, Document Repository, FullTextSearch and FHURMObjects, are all properly backed up, since the Databases and log files are now in a new location.

One week later, you can remove the Databases and log files from the old server or at any time you can copy these to an backup system and remove them from the old Database server.

You should also consider uninstalling MS SQL Server on the old server within 2 to 4 weeks of this successful transition to a new SQL Server location.