9. Installing Cerebro On-Premises

There are two ways to install Cerebro Client application: either local (on each workstation) or centralized (on the server only). The first option is best suited for computers outside the corporate LAN (laptops, home PCs, etc.), while the second option is best for workstations within the LAN (it is possible to launch the client application right from the server, without installing it on every single workstation).

9.1. Installing On a Workstation

Select and download a distribution pack appropriate for your OS from the website: https://cerebrohq.com/en/download (available for Mac OS/Windows/Linux).

Run the installation file and follow the instructions of setup wizard, or unpack the archive into a chosen directory.

Next, you have to log into Cerebro. Usually, your login and password are contained in a separate email message with “Your Cerebro Account” in its header. Later on you may change your credentials in the Cerebro/My profile… menu.

You can check out a brief video review of Cerebro functions here: Video guide

9.2. Installing Cerebro Client Application on a File Server

Installing Cerebro client application on a file server removes the need to install it on every workstation. Another important advantage is that you get an opportunity for centralized configuration.

Server installation, in general, consists of two steps: 1) installing executable files into a shared network place and 2) creating shortcuts to them on workstations for quick launch.

You can install application versions for different OS into the same folder. It won’t harm the system, moreover, you’ll gain even better control over configuration changes, because all the application versions will use the same shared configuration files. To do that, download and unzip cerebro-all-in-one.zip from the “Download” section on the website: https://cerebrohq.com.

9.2.1. Configuring main.conf

In general, Cerebro client applications need no changes in settings, unless their default values somehow don’t suit your LAN and/or server configuration.

The main.conf file contains general settings for all Cerebro components. In practice, most important phases might be the following ones:

  • Setting up a connection between Cerebro client application and database;
  • Setting up connection settings between Cerebro and Cargador (if Cargador is installed on the server as well);
  • Configuring Internet connection via a proxy server.

Cerebro loads main.conf from the etc folder located in the same folder that contains the main executable Cerebro file (there is a sample configuration file main.conf.example). This is the only file that needs configuration if you have a centralized server-based Cerebro client application. If you have Cerebro installed on a number of workstations, you must edit the main.conf file on every workstation accordingly.

9.3. Configuring Database parameters

Warning

The “Configuring Database parameters” chapter contains information that you might need only in case of local Cerebro installation (see chapter “Local (On-premises) Deployment”).

If you have local Cerebro installation, including the database on premises, all client applications must be reconfigured to connect to that local database. If the client application exists as a single instance (on a server), all you have to do is edit the following line in the main.conf file located in the /etc subfolder of Cerebro folder:

<default>
    <db>
        <address>HOST:PORT</address>
    </db>
</default>

Another way to do it is to use Connection Options interface in the Cerebro login window on each workstation:

_images/cerebro_db_address.png

9.4. Setting up Cargador Parameters

Warning

The “Setting up Cargador Parameters” chapter contains information needed only if you plan to use Cerebro with Cargador running on a local server, i.e., for hybrid cloud or local types of installation (see chapter “Deployment Options”).

In fact, Cerebro client application contains a built-in Cargador module which can be launched on Cerebro start. The built-in module handles the same functions as a server-based Cargador, but locally, on a particular workstation for a particular user.

Another possibility for Cerebro client application is to skip launching built-in Cargador module and connect to a server-based one, in order to work with a file server located in LAN.

The first mode is designed for standalone workstations without direct access to your corporate LAN (PCs at home, laptops, etc.), while the second mode is best for LAN-connected workstations - it prevents stored files from unnecessary duplication on users’ workstations.

You can set Cerebro client application to use either a built-in Cargador, or a server-based one, or to switch automatically between the two options, depending on the current network environment.

Click the Connection options link in the Log in Cerebro window to open the settings window.

_images/login_window.png

Note

If you have activated the Auto Login option and Cerebro skips the login window on start, go to Cerebro/Log off menu in the main interface.

The settings window appears:

_images/conn_options.png

Note

You can resize the window by dragging its borders with a mouse.

If you have a server-based Cargador running correctly, we recommend you to choose the Both (Automatic selection) option.

If, for some reason, you need to change the server-based Cargador connection settings manually on a current workstation, then choose the In a local area network option and type the server’s name or IP address in the Host field.

Note

Still, it’s better to change the Cargador connection settings in the configuration file, without using the GUI, especially, if you have a centralized server-based Cerebro client application.

After you’re done with changing all needed parameters you can log into Cerebro. If the parameters are correct, you should be able to see thumbnails of mediafiles stored in Cerebro.

Note

For initial tests during configuration it is recommended to use a machine that can access the Cargador network catalogue directly, without directory mapping (see chapter “Directory Mapping”).

Also, pay attention to the upper-right corner of the Cerebro main interface. If Cargador is working correctly, it must look like this (a white cylinder on black background):

_images/carga_indicator.png

If the cylinder is blinking red instead of being white, it means that for some reason Cerebro client application fails to connect to Cargador. Please make sure that: the server name is correct, the firewall isn’t blocking connections to port 45430, Cargador is running, the client machine pings the Cargador server successfully (see “Troubleshooting”).

If Cerebro forum threads do not display mediafiles’ thumbnails (and/or file download progress bars are red, a cross is displayed instead of a thumbnail):

_images/thumbnail_errors.png

, it means that Cargador is malfunctioning or disconnected (for troubleshooting see the chapter: “Troubleshooting”).

9.4.1. Registering a File Storage

In order to enable Cerebro client applications to detect server-based Cargador instances correctly and provide users with an opportunity to access files remotely (from outside the LAN), it is necessary to register network file storages with the Cerebro database.

Go to the File Storages tab in the Administrator panel (Main menu/Tools/Administrator…)

_images/admin_new_storage.png

Create a new entry, specify its name - to distinguish between several storages, basically, IP address or DNS name - for external/remote users to connect. Then specify the name or LAN address of the server in the LAN host field. As for default ports, usually there is no need to change them, unless you changed them in Cargador settings (you can check the ports availability by pressing the Test buttons next to the corresponding fields).

Now your remote users can use this Cargador to search and download any file from the storage.

9.4.2. Allocating File Storages to Projects

Having registered the file storage, you gave access to remote/external users for file downloading. In order to get the external users’ files uploaded to your server’s catalogue, please, do the following step.

Go to the Administrator panel, select your storage from the list on the File Storages tab, and click the Projects on file storage tab. Use “<<” и “>>” buttons to add/remove projects to/from the list of projects to be stored on this storage (the left-hand part of the window).

When a file is added to the project forum by a remote/external user, Cerebro uploads it to the corresponding (allocated) network storage.

Cerebro client applications connected to a server-based Cargador do not forward files to users’ local workstations. This means that users should download files on demand, manually, when they need a local copy of a file.

Warning

Each project must have at least one allocated network storage, otherwise remote users would have no place to upload files. That’s why Cerebro prevents you from detaching the last storage from a project.

9.4.3. Directory Mapping

This option makes network resources accessible for users of different operating systems, because network paths have different formats in different operating systems. It’s very useful for work in heterogenous OS environment.

For example, users may add some network links to forum messages. As far as these links must have different formats for MacOS, Linux and Windows, Cerebro must adjust the links accordingly to make them accessible for any platform user.

The algorhythm of directory mapping works this way: let’s say, you have a shared network resource, accessible by the following path:

  • Windows: \server\catalog
  • Linux: /mnt/catalog
  • Mac OS: /Volumes/catalog

The Administrator must type these values into the configuration file. From now on, before opening a file, Cerebro will check all the specified paths and, if the beginning of a link will match one of them, the directory will be mapped according to the current OS.

For example, a Mac OS user is given a link to a file that looks like /Volumes/catalog/file.foo.

Another user (under Linux) tries to open this file. Cerebro resolves this path and substitutes its beginning - /Volumes/catalog to /mnt/catalog, the result will be /mnt/catalog/file.foo and the file is opened successfully.

Warning

The most common cause of incorrect or non-working directory mapping is incorrect path settings in the configuration file. Make sure that you specify correct path settings. Also, keep in mind that they are case-sensitive.

Let’s review a specific example of a configuration file. The directory mapping settings are specified in the <cerebro executable path>/etc/viewers.conf file. That is, the file is located in the same folder where is the Cerebro executable (In MacOS you have to open the contents of the application).

Note

If you have a single instance of Cerebro client application in your company (installed on a server), obviously, the changes will be applied for all users at once. Otherwise, if you have a separate instance of Cerebro client application on every workstation, you have to change this file on each workstation.

Directory mapping uses the values at the very neginning of the viewers.conf file. They look like this:

<dirMap>
    <enable Value="0"/>
    <dirs>
        <map>
            <win Value="//server/projects"/>
            <mac Value="/volumes/projects"/>
            <linux Value="/server/projects"/>
        </map>
    </dirs>
</dirMap>

You must type the settings of your network folders (there may be more than one folder) in there, for example:

<dirs>
    <map>
        <win Value="//server1/projects"/>
        <mac Value="/volumes/projects"/>
        <linux Value="/server1/projects"/>
    </map>
    <map>
        <win Value="//server2/data"/>
        <mac Value="/volumes/data"/>
        <linux Value="/server2/data"/>
    </map>
</dirs>

Warning

Cerebro will not map directories until you activate the enable parameter:

<enable Value="1"/>

In the configuration file you should list all network folders for all operating systems where you intend to use directory mapping. For example, Cerebro running under Linux must resolve a network path created by a MacOS or Windows user.

If you get an error message like <file path> is not found attempting to open a file (using Mirada for example), troubleshoot it as described here: “Troubleshooting”.