Configuring Your Development Machine for Aras Innovator

Configuring Your Development Machine for Aras Innovator

Whether you're a potential Aras adopter installing Innovator for the first time or you're a seasoned Aras developer with a new laptop, there are a few prerequisites you'll need to prepare your machine (or VM) for a successful Innovator installation. These requirements are all documented in the Platform Specification for each release, but we'd like to help make the installation process even easier with this step-by-step walkthrough.

Please note that this blog post is intended as a quick guide to help Aras Innovator admins, developers, and IT professionals set up a machine or VM as a development server. These instructions are not suited to installing a production instance. For all production installations, please refer to the Aras Innovator documentation and recommendations by Aras Support.

Install Prerequisites

Each release of Aras Innovator requires several components to be installed on the server before you install Innovator. You can find these requirements in the Innovator Server Specifications and Vault Server Specifications sections of the Platform Specification documentation for your specific Innovator release. These are the requirements for Aras Innovator 12.0.

.NET Framework 4.7.2

You can download the .NET Framework 4.7.2 installer from Microsoft here. Note that you may already have a newer version of the .NET Framework on your machine depending on your operating system and whether you have developer tools like Visual Studio installed. Even if you have a newer version of the .NET Framework installed, you still need to install 4.7.2 for Innovator to run correctly. If you do have a newer version of the .NET Framework already, the installer will tell you immediately. In this case, you should download the .NET Framework 4.7.2 Developer Pack, which will let you install the correct version.

ASP.NET Core/.NET Core 2.1.8

This requirement is new for Innovator 12.0, so you will need to install it even if you have successfully installed Innovator 11.0 on your server before. You can download the installer from Microsoft's website. However, be sure to select the right version of the installer. The download page lists all of the versions of .NET Core 2.1, and you specifically want version 2.1.8 of the ASP.NET Core/.NET Core: Runtime & Hosting Bundle.

Microsoft Visual C++ 2015 Redistributable

The C++ redistributable is another component you can download from Microsoft.

Install IIS

Microsoft's Internet Information Services, or IIS, is a collection of services and features that allows your laptop or VM to act as a web server to host your Innovator instance. Without IIS installed, you won't be able to run Innovator. Luckily, installing IIS is pretty straightforward - you just need to enable some features that are already on your machine. Follow the steps for your operating system below.

Windows 10

The steps outlined below are for a Windows 10 laptop. The steps should be similar if you're running an older version of Windows.

  1. Go to Control Panel > Programs and Features > Turn Windows features on or off. A dialog will appear with a tree of features displayed as folders.
  2. Enable all of the contents in the .NET Framework 3.5 folder.
  3. Enable all of the contents in the .NET Framework 4.7 folder.
  4. Expand the Internet Information Services folder.
  5. Expand the Web Management Tools folder and enable the following features:
    1. IIS Management Console
    2. IIS Management Scripts and Tools
    3. IIS Management Service
  6. Enable all of the contents in the World Wide Web Services folder.
  7. Click OK to install/configure windows features for IIS.

Windows Server

These steps are for installing IIS on a machine running Windows Server.

  1. Open the Server Manager. 
  2. Click Add Roles and Features.
  3. On the Before You Begin page of the manager, click Next.
  4. On the Installation Type page of the manager, select Role-based or feature-based installation and click Next.
  5. On the Server Selection page of the manager, select the server or virtual hard disk you want to install IIS onto and click Next. The options will vary depending on your server's configuration.
  6. On the Server Roles page of the manager, expand the Web Server (IIS) group.
  7. Enable all roles under Web Server (IIS) > Web Server.
  8. Expand the Management Tools group, enable the following roles, and click Next
    1. IIS Management Console
    2. IIS Management Scripts and Tools
    3. IIS Management Service
  9. On the Features page of the manager, enable all features under .NET Framework 3.4 Features.
  10. Enable all features under .NET Framework 4.7 Features and click Next.
  11. On the Confirmation page of the manager, confirm the roles and features you selected and click Next to install.

Install SQL Server

You'll need SQL Server to host your Aras Innovator database. If you don't have a full SQL Server license, you can download SQL Server Express from Microsoft for free.

  1. Run the SQL Server Express installer.
  2. Select New SQL Server stand-alone installation or add features to an existing installation.
  3. On the License Terms page of the installer, accept the license terms checkbox. Then click Next.
  4. On the Microsoft Update page of the installer, accept the checkbox for Use Microsoft Update to check for updates. Then click Next.
  5. On the Feature Selection page of the installer, click Next to accept the default settings.
  6. On the Instance Configuration page of the installer, click Next to accept the default settings.
  7. On the Server Configuration page of the installer, click Next to accept the default settings.
  8. On the Database Engine Configuration page of the installer, select Mixed Mode authentication and set a complex password. Then click Next to begin installing.

Be sure to save your password in a safe place - you'll need it later.

... and that's it!

You now have a development server that's ready to install Aras Innovator! You can follow the Installation Guide to install Innovator. We'll also be following this blog post with another quick start guide to walk through the steps that we use to install Innovator instances on our own dev servers. Let us know in the comments below or in the community forums if you have any server configuration or installation questions we haven't covered here. 

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Mike Lindner
  • Thanks for the feedback, Frederic! The Aras installer doesn't currently have a publically documented CLI option, but I can file an enhancement request for the installation guide document to be updated. If you're an Aras subscriber, you're welcome to contact Aras Support in the meantime to see if they have any tips or advice they can offer.

  • Thanks for this blog.

    I have recently installed Aras Innovator in a test server to tryout the features of Aras.

    What would be great for many people more command line oriented would be to share you experience or script to install Aras in a more automatic manner.

    e.g.: Install-WindowsFeature  -IncludeAllSubFeature Web-Server,Web-Security,Web-Net-Ext, Web-Net-Ext45,Web-Asp-Net45,Web-ISAPI-Ext,Web-ISAPI-Filter,Web-Mgmt-Tools, NET-Framework-Features

    or something similar.

    This would be useful to build server dedicated for automatic test in a CI/CD pipeline.



  • Thanks for the suggestion, Angela! That's a good idea. I'll reach out to some folks in our other offices and see if they can write up translations, or at least record videos showing the settings in other languages.

  • Hi Eli,

    thanks for the helpful overview of how to install Aras on a regular machine! Could you ask your international colleagues to convert this one to German/Japanese/etc. versions? The last time I installed Aras on my German machine, it was a challenge to find the correct settings in Windows. The English terms are often not 1:1 transferable in other languages. In fact finding the right translations was more difficult than the actual installation of Innovator. Slight smile