Preparing to Install

Before you install Commander, you must do the following tasks.

By installing this software, you're accepting the License Agreement. If you don't accept the terms of the License Agreement, please return this product.



Download the Commander software

Download the Commander installation package from the Snow Commander Support Downloads page on Snow Globe.

Make sure you have administrative access to the machine

Installing Commander requires administrative access.

Make sure the machine you're installing on has the recommended configuration

See System Requirements.

Tasks required for managing Microsoft Hyper-V SCVMM

Install Microsoft System Center VMM Administrator Console on the Commander host. Note that SCVMM requires that the host be joined to the domain.

  • To add SCVMM 2016 cloud accounts, Commander must be running on Windows 2016.
  • If you install the SCVMM Administrator Console after you install Commander, you can enable support for SCVMM cloud accounts by going to Windows Services on the Commander host and starting the Commander Hyper-V Adapter Service.

Install Microsoft .NET Framework version 4.7 release 460805 or higher.

To work with Microsoft SCVMM cloud accounts in Commander, all SCVMM hosts must have Microsoft .NET Framework version 4.7 or higher installed before you install Commander or before you upgrade a previous release of Commander.

Ensure that event-based refresher mode is enabled.

Commander takes advantage of SCVMM's event-based refresher mode so that it can obtain IP address changes from SCVMM VMs. If refresher mode isn't enabled on your SCVMM hosts, you need to run some Windows PowerShell commands on the hosts to manually set the refresher mode. See How to enable the event-based refresher mode for Virtual Machine Manager hosts on the Microsoft Support site.

Create a local or domain account for the Commander Service

The Commander Windows service also needs an account under whose context it will run. Commander will also use this account to connect to remote storage.

If you're using the default (PostgreSQL) database, this account must be a local, non-administrator user. If you're using Microsoft SQL, the account may be any local account or a Domain account.

In either case, disable User Must Change Password At Next Login when you configure the account. The account must also have the Log on as a service right added.

If you're using a local account, configure the account with Password Never Expires and User Cannot Change Password.

On Windows, the user must be granted Access this computer from network, otherwise the account isn't accepted and you see a generic username/password error.

Ensure that the Secondary Logon service startup type is set to Manual

When you're installing Commander, if the Secondary Logon service is disabled, the Commander service won't start.

This error message is displayed by the installer after you enter the service account credentials:

Invalid Configuration: The supplied account is not allowed to log on locally, check the security policy.

In addition, the following error is written to the installer.log file:

Error: Couldn't create Process: (1058) The service cannot be started, either because it is disabled or because it has no enabled devices associated with it.

When the Secondary Logon service startup type is set to Manual, the Commander service starts automatically.

Prepare to use Microsoft SQL Server for production use

If you are using Microsoft SQL Server:

  • You need 2 vCPUs with 2 GB of RAM
  • Configure SQL Server to use mixed mode authentication
  • Create a database that can be used by Commander
  • Create the database using the simple recovery model
  • Create a user that Commander uses to connect to the database. The user must also be granted privileges on the database for db_owner, db_datawriter, and db_datareader.
  • Change the SQL Server's compatibility level to SQL Server 2012 (110), then restart the Commander service. See View or Change the Compatibility Level of a Database in the Microsoft documentation.
  • The SQL server name must only contain uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, periods, and hyphens.
  • The default Cardinality Estimator used for Microsoft SQL Server 2014 and 2016 increases query compile time, which can reduce the Service Portal Dashboard display speed.

A default Postgres database is included with Commander, but isnot recommended for production use. See also Database considerations.

Create an administrative account in each cloud account

For each cloud account, Commander requires an administrative account that has full administrative access on the entire cloud account. Administrator privileges are required for a number of functions that Commander performs. These functions include retrieving VM and infrastructure information, managing VM identity, powering VMs on and off, and other policy actions.

  • Commander doesn't make use of VMware's Linked Mode feature. Commander communicates with each vCenter directly.
  • If you will manage Microsoft Hyper-V SCVMM, the account must have full administrator permissions on SCVMM. If the account has only delegated administrator permissions, automated deployment may fail.

Create a uniquely identifiable administrative account on each cloud account (for example, "Embot"). Creating a unique account name allows you to easily track Commander commands sent to the cloud account by Commander or by Commander users.

Install a CA certificate

If this installation of Commander will be used in a production environment, don't use the default self-signed SSL certificate. Instead, you must generate an SSL certificate and have it certified by a certificate authority. See the Snow Globe article Generating and Installing an SSL Certificate to learn how.