Install Aras Innovator on a New Virtual Machine in the Cloud (Part 2 of 2)

In part 1, I set up a new Virtual Machine in the Sherweb Performance Cloud and installed the prerequisites for Aras Innovator 11 (Windows 2012, SQL Server Express 2014, IIS, .NET, SMTP Server).  Next, I install Aras Innovator 11 itself on the new standalone Virtual Machine.

Install Aras Innovator latest release

The key to Aras Innovator installations is to follow the instructions exactly.  Aras provides excellent documentation, but the pathway to success is narrow.  Deviations from their instructions may seem insignificant to you, but they can lead to failure and a slew of confusing error messages.  If you get lost, start over and follow the instructions again.  Also, use your implementation partner, or Aras support if you are a subscriber.  This is easier to do the second time, and they have done this many more times than that.

  1. Aras Innovator Installation Overview – see "Aras Innovator 11.0 - Installation Guide.pdf"
  2. Obtain Aras license key at: (will be emailed to you)
  3. Download software at Aras downloads, or from their FTP site if you are a subscriber. The primary installation file is InnovatorSetup 11 SP2 installer (.msi)
  4. Service Packs are available only to subscribers. 
    1. SP1 is latest version supported with Partner Demo database
    2. SP2 is latest version (Q2 2015)
    3. The Aras release roadmap is here:
  5. Run the .msi installer and follow the Installation Guide exactly, with these highlights:
    1. Select “Complete” installation, including the Conversion Server
      1. NOTE: Conversion Servers are typically installed on a separate server in production. For more information, refer to section 5.12 Installing Separate Conversion Server in the Installation Guide
    2. Destination Folder = “C:\Program Files (x86)\Aras\InnovatorServer\”
    3. Web Alias = “InnovatorServer”
    4. SMTP Server = “” (Assuming you set up a local SMTP Server per my instructions here)
    5. When prompted, enter Aras license key from step 1, e.g.
      1. <License  lic_type="Unlimited" lic_key="xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx" act_key="xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx"/>
    6. Vault = “Default”
      1. Aras will configure a new folder within the vault (C:\Aras\Vault\) for each database installed on the instance, using the database name as the vault folder name
    7. On Database setup, login as sa/(password) then create a database owner innovator/(password)

Test Aras Innovator Client Connection

  1. Open IE or Firefox, and browse to the Innovator URL, e.g.
  2. Firefox is easier to configure on the client end, but Internet Explorer has some additional client-side file features.  For more information about browser support, see:
  3. Firefox requires an “Extended Support Release” (ESR) version, not the latest release. 
    1. The latest ESR version supported by Aras is Firefox 31 ESR (as of July 2015).  Download at
    2. Firefox shows ESR for version 38, Aras will support in 11.0 SP4 (August 2015)
  4. For Internet Explorer, see: Aras Innovator 11.0 - Client Settings for Internet Explorer on Windows.pdf, and follow these steps exactly
    1. You will need to repeat this IE client configuration each time you change the domain for Aras Innovator (i.e. the new domain must be added to the “Trusted Sites” zone)
    2. Go to Settings > Internet Options > Security and add http://* to “Trusted Sites” (uncheck the option to require https connections if it is checked)
    3. Download .NET Framework (4.5.2):
    4. TROUBLESHOOTING: When I signed in through IE I received a warning “Hosting of .NET controls inside Internet Explorer is disabled.”
      1. This error means that you have .NET 4.5 installed on your client machine. .NET 4.5 disables IE hosting by default. To enable it, you need to add the following registry keys to your computer:
      2. For x86 environments: [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\.NETFramework]
        1. "EnableIEHosting"=dword:00000001
      3. For x64 environments: [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\.NETFramework]
        1. "EnableIEHosting"=dword:00000001
  5. Default login is admin / innovator (disable or re-name the root user on production environments)
  6. If you receive HTTP errors (e.g. HTTP 500), then browse Innovator from the local server in order to receive more detailed error messages
    1. This assumes that on the Windows Server, in IIS > {Select your Server} > Sites > Default Web Site > InnovatorServer > Error Pages you have the option selected to return “Detailed errors for local requests and custom error pages for remote requests”

That's it!  You should now be able to log in to Aras Innovator on your new Virtual Machine from your local IE or Firefox browser.  Next, it's on to configuration and customization.