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Canine III

R4+ Migration to new Server

I have got my new server up and running, it is great and it is fast !

HPE Server 10 core processor, 2.4 Tb disk space; 64 Gb RAM.

All designed to keep us running another 7 or 8 years.

I have loaded the R4+ install disc.

R4 - will not open, no data file.

So far so good, just as expected.

There are several jobs left to  finish :

 ~ is it best to copy & paste the entire \sys2data\ folder ?

 ~ alternatively is it best to 'restore' data from the most recent backup ?

 ~ Then update from the install disc to current version

 ~ contact Carestream help desk to effect licencing.

 ~ reconfigure all workstations to point towards the new server.

Do Carestream have an advice sheet / crib sheet for this ?

If possible, I would like to finish this next weekend and then call the helpdesk Monday morning for licensing !

We have kept 9.00 to 9.15 Free !

Advice much appreciated.



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CS Dental Employee
CS Dental Employee

Good Morning, 

Welcome to The Exchange! I hope you're enjoying your new hardware. 

When installing a new server, we would recommend taking the latest 'FullBackup' folder taken from your R4 prior to the Server migration taking place, this can be used using R4's Backup utility that you will see in the task bar, next to the clock on the server machine. 

When opening the utility, you will see the FullBackup and DBBackup directories, the Fullbackup directory is required by our Second Line team to perform a restore. 

**It's worth nothing that any data entered into your R4+ system after that Full Backup has been taken, will not be available on the new server once the backup is restored from, and it is not possible to merge two databases if you were to record data in a blank R4+ install** 

All migrations of your R4 data from one server to another are undertaken by our Second Line team here, and this is included within the cost of your R4 Software Support contract. To request a Second Line agent to perform your data restore we request that you contact our service desk by phone (0845 230 2451 Option 1) at the absolute latest - prior to 2.30pm on the day you wish the restore to take place. We request that the new server is setup, R4 Clinical+ is installed, ready to be licenced and accompanied by a copy of the data you wish to be restored; located on the same drive as the new blank R4 server-side installation.

The following is also worth noting: 
- We do not support installation on MAC operating system and there is no support for R4 Classic on Windows server 2012, SQL Server 2012, Windows 8 or later
- An engineer must carry out the R4 software installation. We will assist 3rd party engineers with the installation, however the 3rd party engineers will be responsible for the data transfer from the old server to the new server.
- For ease of the migration process, the new server should have the same host-name as the old server.

We understand and stress that this is a delicate process, if you have any questions about anything in regards to either my response or the migration in general I urge you to call our R4 Support Desk on 0845 230 2451 Option 1.

Kind Regards,
Stephen Gray

Thanks for this information Stephen,

I have done this before and if my memory serves me correctly, I completed everything over a weekend and we allowed15 mins for Carestream to 'licence' the new server on the Monday morning.

I still have the 'crib sheet' that I used then.

However, that was probably R4 Classic and I suppose things have changed.

The new server is already up and running.

My server specialist has already named it, but, I want to keep the old one for a while anyway so the name will be different.

I have loaded my original R4 install disk, but now, I can now go no further.

I need to load the update disk for the version I am currently running. Is there any way to do this ?

I need to load the NHS 2019 fees update disk after that.

I timed my "full back up" this evening and it took 2 hours.

I can drag that across the network to the new server very quickly.

After the new installation licensing and 'restore' of backup, I will need to 'direct' all workstations including 5 surgeries, 2 reception and manager's office  to the new installation.

Does that involve uninstalling R4 and re downloading from the new server, or, is there a quicker way to point a workstation to the new installation ?

I am beginning to think that there is no way way that I can complete this in an afternoon from 2.30.

It is not just very onerous, but technically in breach of our NHS contract if we have to close a five surgery practice for a whole day in order to upgrade a server.

Is there any way I can do more evenings and weekends to minimise downtime in the surgery ?

Thank you for your help,

Edward Byrne.



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Good Afternoon Edward.

I'm starting to get a little confused here with some of the details as to where you're at in the migration process, and how you would like to progress this. 

I understand that your new server is up and running, but you're attempting to load an update disk for a version you are already using?
- Your database will have attached to it, and will be structured, in line with the version of R4 you are currently using.
- If you have installed R4 onto a new server, to restore data you would need to install either the same, or an earlier version of R4 for the Data Restore to take place. Once that restore has taken place, you can then proceed to upgrade R4 using update media to versions newer than the installed version of R4 in use.

A copy of the April 2019 fee update is on The Exchange and can be found searching 'April 2019' in the search box, it's worth noting however that you shouldn't need to run this update, the fee increases will be written into the data that will be restored to the new server. 

Directing all the workstations to the new Server / Hostname is pretty straightforward, if when launching R4 from the desktop shortcut, you hold down the 'Scroll Lock' key on your keyboard, it will prompt for the new server name. Clients will then update themselves automatically to the version of R4 installed on the server.

 There are options you could explore with your account manager if you would like to do this OOH (Out of Hours), if this is something you would like to explore, or if you have any other questions about this particularly in-depth subject I urge you to call our support desk on 0845 230 2451 Option 1. Alternatively from mobiles you can call: 0330 094 8194 to avoid any charges incurred by 0845 numbers.

Kind Regards,
Stephen Gray

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One good thing to come from our Coronavirus lockdown is that there was loads of time for the support desk to complete this data transfer for us.

To assist anyone else in the future, here are some notes :

I have definitely done this myself many years ago with R4 Classic, but, the process is definitely more complex with R4 Clinical Plus. You can no longer just 'restore' a data file !

Install the R4 Clinical Plus onto the new server.

Call Carestream to get this licenced.

Start with an R4 'FullBackup' using the R4 build in backup utility on your original system.

We have a five surgery practice with 15 years of data amounting to 32Gb and this took two hours.

Transfer this data to the new server. We transferred it over on our Gigabyte network and this took "over 24 hours" according to Windows.

We did our data transfer over a weekend so I left it running over night.

N.B. After this, you could access the old R4 & data for reference purposes only but you should not edit or change anything because it will not get installed on the new system

Call Carestream to effect the restoration of the old data.

Level one Support will not do this, they will pass it onto Level two support.

I called at 9.00 am and the Data installation was finished at 4.30 pm. This was just the Server and did not include updating the individual workstations.

I then attempted the shortcut / trick of directing each workstation to the new server by pressing "scroll lock" when starting R4. This did not work.

Next morning, Carestream kindly logged on again and directed each workstation towards the new server by manually editing the Windows Registry on each machine.

5 surgeries + 2 reception + 2 offices + X-ray room + emergency laptop = 11 machines but Carestream logged onto several machines at a time and whizzed through it in under an hour.

So, to summarise, Carestream staff were brilliant, but this is a time consuming process.

Backing up and transferring the data would be best done over a weekend like I did, but then allow a minimum of a day, perhaps a day and a half for Carestream to complete the process.

The Carestream support to restore / insert the data is included in your monthly fee.

I am beginning to wonder now about how long it would take to restore data in the event of a server disaster.

Previously, I though we could use a spare PC and possible get back up and running in a few hours, but I now think that this is most unlikely.

Fortunately, we are running a Raid system and have dual power supplies so I hope we wont need to !

It makes me think that a Cloud system is the way to go except our Broadband, which is meant to be top of the range fibre, is painfully slow at the moment.

I hope this is helpful to others comptemplating a new server.

Not applicable

Hello Ed,

This is a great summary of the process, I know from experience from my CS R4+ support days that transferring large data sets like yours is time consuming.

I notice you mentioned cloud systems, our brand new Carestream Dental cloud Practice Management System is called 'Care Management Platform' (CMP). The minimum internet speed for it to run is 3Mbps download and 1Mbps upload, the recommended speed is 6Mbps download and 3Mbps upload.

So as you can see it does not need super fast broadband to run. In fact when I visit practices to demo CMP I tether to the 3G/4G on my iPhone to demonstrate this, which is always running somewhere between minimum and recommended speeds. The demos always go smoothly often with customer comments about how fast the system is.



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