PDXpert PLM Software Installation Guide

PDXpert client diagnostics

PDXpert client installation diagnostics

For new installations and upgrades

If your PDXpert installer fails to run, or doesn't uncompress correctly, it's likely that the file has been corrupted during download. Return to the download page to obtain a new copy.

Do not run the installer directly from the download page. When prompted, click the Save As button in your browser, and save the installer to a convenient location on your computer's local hard disk.

After the download is finished, run the installer from the saved location.

You must have administrator rights to your computer, and be the only user logged into Windows.

For new installations only

The PDXpert client will examine your system for its Windows and .NET prerequisites and, if missing, will automatically download and install these from the Microsoft website.

During installation, an error may be displayed or contained in the installer log file: Cannot access a disposed object. Object Name: 'System.Net.HttpWebResponse' or Process returned error: 0xc8000222.

This error usually indicates that Windows Update has a pending system change, or a bad download of the Microsoft .NET installer. Reboot your computer to finish the Windows Update, separately download and install the current .NET framework, or run the Windows Update troubleshooter.

When your Windows / .NET is fully updated, restart the PDXpert client installer.

For upgrades only

Errors during upgrades may sometimes occur when Windows Installer loses track of installation history, and sees mismatched information in the system Registry. This mismatch is discovered when the PDXpert client installer attempts to uninstall an earlier release prior to installing the upgrade. A typical error message is The feature you are trying to use is on a network resource that is unavailable. Typically, the reference to a network resource is inaccurate and Use source: pdxpert.client.setup.msi will fail.

Uninstall PDXpert using Windows Control Panel

Manually uninstalling PDXpert may be successful, particularly on newer Windows:

  1. Open the Windows Control Panel
  2. In recent Windows releases, open Programs and Features; in older Windows, open Add or Remove Programs.
  3. Scroll down to the PDXpert PLM item, select it, and click the Uninstall or Remove button.

You can now try to run the PDXpert installer. If the error remains, then you'll need to repair the PDXpert installation using one of the following options.

Option 1: For 64-bit, and possibly 32-bit, Windows

Use the Microsoft Fix It tool to uninstall the previous PDXpert installation.

The web page specifically mentions that the tool "removes bad registry key on 64 bit operating systems". However, the tool can be installed on, and may repair the bad registry key in, 32-bit systems — it's a bit ambiguous. The technique described in the next option is known to be compatible with all x86 and x64 Windows.

There's an Advanced-Download to run on a different or disconnected computer link for saving a local copy of the tool.

Option 2: For all Windows systems

Microsoft Windows Installer Clean Up Utility, msicuu2.exe, was created to remove incorrect Registry data and prepare for a new install. Although it's no longer available from Microsoft, you can find this utility on a trusted IT download site. The tool is compatible with all 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows.

  • To install msicuu2.exe, log into Windows using an administrator account. By default, the setup program will install the Windows Installer Clean Up Utility's files to the folder: C:\Program Files\Windows Installer Clean Up (32-bit) or C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Installer Clean Up (64-bit).
  • On the Start menu, select All Programs, and click on the Windows Install Clean Up shortcut. The window will list all programs that are installed on your computer that use Windows Installer.
  • Select the PDXpert application only.
  • Click the Remove button, which immediately deletes the PDXpert application from the Windows Installer database.
  • After the clean-up, delete all files - but not any folders - that remain in the %ProgramFiles%\PDXpert folder (by default, C:\Program Files\PDXpert).
  • Re-run the PDXpert installer.

If you choose to use the utility, be extremely careful to select only the PDXpert installation for clean-up. You should consider uninstalling the Windows Installer Clean-Up Utility after you're done. You'll find the Windows Installer Clean Up Utility entry in the Add/Remove Programs (XP) or Programs and Features (Windows 7) control panel.

PDXpert client connection diagnostics

PDXpert client communications

The PDXpert client must communicate with the PDXpert Application Server to verify the user, validate the software license, and (in PDXpert 7.x or earlier) obtain the database connection parameters. You use the Welcome to PDXpert PLM window's PDXpert server computer's machine name to tell the PDXpert client where to look for the PDXpert Application Server.

When the PDXpert client is started for the first time, it checks the localhost for the PDXpert Application Server and, if not found on the local machine, broadcasts a request for the PDXpert Application Server's network location. If the server doesn't respond, then the client's Welcome to PDXpert PLM window will again be displayed. In the PDXpert server computer's machine name text box, enter the name of the computer where the PDXpert Application Server has been installed. If the server computer has been assigned a static IP address, you can use that instead.

If the Welcome to PDXpert PLM window is displayed repeatedly when the PDXpert client is launched, this may be caused by one of the following problems:

  • The PDXpert Application Server has not yet been installed.
  • The firewall/anti-virus on the PDXpert Application Server computer is blocking the inbound PDXpert client connection.
  • The firewall/anti-virus on the PDXpert client computer is blocking the outbound connection to the PDXpert Application Server computer.
  • The server computer name is incorrect.
  • The client's TCP port number has been set to something other than 48084-48087, and doesn't match the PDXpert Application Server port number.
  1. If other PDXpert clients cannot connect or you only have a single client installed, then:
    • If the PDXpert client is installed on the same computer as the PDXpert Application Server, enter localhost into the PDXpert server computer name text box.
    • Verify that the PDXpert Application Server computer's firewall is configured to allow communications through ports 48084-48087 (or the four contiguous ports starting at the base TCP port displayed on the PDXpert Application Server window's Information tab).
    • Reboot the server computer, or stop and then restart the PDXpert Server service in the Services control panel.
    • Review the PDXpert Application Server computer configuration.
    • Review all of the solutions mentioned in the next section, below.
  2. If other PDXpert clients can connect and operate normally, then you may want to compare the values from one of the other client computers:
    • The client computer's firewall must allow communications through the specified TCP ports (typically 48084 to 48087).
    • The client computer's network settings allow communication on the same network as the PDXpert Application Server computer.
    • Verify the correct value in the Server computer's machine name text box. This is the computer name (or machine name) where the PDXpert Application Server has been installed. To eliminate the network DNS server as a source of error, you can enter the server computer's IP address (similar to or instead of the computer name.
    • If you're accessing the PDXpert server from an internet-connected client, use the server machine's public IP address in the Server computer's machine name text box.

PDXpert release 8.0 and later

The PDXpert server communicates with the SQL Server database, and each PDXpert client application. The PDXpert client doesn't directly communicate with the SQL Server database.

  • Each computer's firewall and anti-virus (FW/AV) must allow communications on TCP ports 48084 through 48087. It's usually sufficient to set your FW/AV to allow communications between the pdxpert.exe and pdxpertserver.exe applications. Ensure that your AV doesn't override your FW settings (for example, it doesn't change the Inbound connections: Allow setting).
  • If the Welcome to PDXpert dialog is displayed more than once, the PDXpert client is not able to find and connect to the PDXpert Application Server. This is usually because:
    • The log-in account name or password is invalid: Verify that the account credentials are correct.
    • The PDXpert Application Server has not yet been installed: Use the PDXpert System Setup installer.
    • The PDXpert communications service is not started, possibly because the server computer requires a reboot after installation or Windows Update: (1) In the Windows Control Panel > Administrator Tools > Services, select the PDXpert Server service from the list, and then click Restart; or (2) Reboot the computer.
    • The server machine name is incorrect: Try using the server's IP address rather than name on the PDXpert client log-in window.
    • Communication is blocked by a firewall or antivirus software: Try disabling both, start the PDXpert client, and then enable the appropriate permissions.
  • If the Software License Key dialog is displayed, then the PDXpert client is able to communicate with the PDXpert Application Server.

PDXpert releases prior to 8.0

Both PDXpert server and client applications communicate with each other, and both directly access the SQL Server database. The server and client go through several steps to establish a working database connection.

Client/Server/Database communications diagram

  • Each computer's firewall and anti-virus (FW/AV) must allow communications on TCP port 1433 (for SQL Server) and TCP ports 48084 through 48087. It's usually sufficient to set your FW/AV to allow communications between the pdxpert.exe, pdxpertserver.exe and sqlservr.exe applications. Ensure that your AV doesn't override your FW settings (for example, it doesn't change SQL Server's Inbound connections: Allow setting).
  • If the Welcome to PDXpert dialog is displayed more than once, the PDXpert client is not able to find the PDXpert Application Server. This is usually because the log-in account name or password is invalid, the PDXpert Application Server has not yet been installed, the server machine name is incorrect, or communication is blocked by a firewall or antivirus software.
  • If the Software License Key dialog is displayed, then the PDXpert client is able to communicate with the PDXpert Application Server. This does not yet confirm that the client can connect to the SQL Server database.
  • If the PDXpert PLM client application window is displayed, then the PDXpert client is communicating with both the PDXpert Application Server and the SQL Server database.

All systems must have the PDXpert Application Server installed.

Connect the PDXpert client to the database

After you've entered your account credentials on the Welcome to PDXpert dialog, you may receive an error that the database is not available: A network-related or instance-specific error occurred while establishing a connection to SQL Server. The server was not found or was not accessible.

  • Wait for SQL Server to become active: Immediately after SQL Server is installed, it may take a while to start or may fail to start. Although it can happen with any configuration, this seems particularly common when using Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, and/or SQL Server 2005. Solution: Before starting the PDXpert client, wait at least a minute or two for SQL Server to finish its initialization and to construct the PDXpert database. It's often good practice to reboot the server computer after SQL Server has been installed.
  • Firewall and/or anti-virus configuration: The most common source of SQL Server communication problems is that access to the Microsoft SQL Server database is being denied because the server computer's firewall and/or anti-virus is blocking communications between the SQL Server database and the PDXpert client. Solution: Temporarily disable both the firewall and anti-virus (FW/AV) on both the server and workstation computers. If you can then sign into the PDXpert client, one of the disabled FW/AV components requires reconfiguration to permit communications between the PDXpert client and the SQL Server database.
  • Enable SQL Server's TCP protocol: Immediately after installation, the default configuration of SQL Server has TCP communications disabled. The PDXpert Application Server installer will enable TCP only while it installs SQL Server Express. If another edition of SQL Server was pre-installed before running the PDXpert Application Server installer, then it's possible that the TCP protocol was not enabled. Solution: Enable the SQL Server TCP protocol.
Releases prior to PDXpert 7.0: Start the PDXpert client communication service

This section refers to service Start and Stop buttons that appear on releases before PDXpert 7.0. PDXpert 7.0 and later manages the communication service automatically.

After installation, PDXpert Application Server application will respond to client requests for service only when client communication service is started. When it's started, the Start button is disabled, and the Stop button is enabled. Conversely, the communication service is stopped when the Start button is enabled. On the PDXpert Application Server console, click on the Start button to start the client communication service.

Log into the PDXpert client

The PDXpert client must provide the PDXpert Application Server with a valid user account name and password.

If the Welcome to PDXpert window is displayed repeatedly when the PDXpert client is launched, this may be caused by an invalid user account name or an incorrect password.

  1. Enter the correct user name, as assigned to you by your application administrator. If this is the first time you're logging into PDXpert, then use the default user account name of Admin
  2. Enter your correct account password. Ensure that the keyboard Caps Lock is correctly set. If this is the first time you're logging into PDXpert, then leave the password blank. The default Admin user account does not have a password until after you log in for the first time and assign it.

If you cannot log into the PDXpert client, then an administrator can verify your account name and clear your password on your Person record. If no one can log into the PDXpert client, the default administrator account can be reestablished using the Reset Admin button on the PDXpert Application Server console.

PDXpert client operation diagnostics

Attaching large or compressed files is extremely slow or fails

Even on high-speed LANs, aggressive or slow antivirus scanning may interfere with file attachments, particularly large or compressed (e.g., .zip, .rar, .iso) files.

Solution: Create a staging directory on the client computer and set the antivirus software to exclude the folder. Before attaching a file to a record, move the file into the excluded folder.

The 'Microsoft.xxx.OLEDB.vvv' provider is not registered on the local machine.

On 64-bit Windows, you may see this error when attempting to export data in a Microsoft Access or Excel format. The Microsoft 64-bit OLEDB driver is not installed on your system.

Solution: To obtain the required OLEDB driver, install the 64-bit Microsoft Access Database Engine 2010 Redistributable (AccessDatabaseEngine_x64.exe) which can be downloaded here:


If your system already has the 32-bit version of Microsoft Office installed, then do not proceed with installation. The OLEDB 64-bit driver installation will likely fail with the following Office installer error:

Error on installing 64-bit OLEDB driver

The OLEDB 64-bit driver cannot be used with your 32-bit version of Office, and you must either

  • upgrade to the 64-bit version of Microsoft Office, or
  • export using only plain text formats such as comma-delimited (.csv) or tab-delimited (.txt).

Setting the local file cache limit

To increase performance, the PDXpert client maintains a cache of downloaded file attachments, typically in the %LocalAppData%\PDXpert\FileCache folder.

In PDXpert release 9.1 and later, the file cache maximum defaults to 500MB and is saved in the settings.xml file (file path). The file's XML <CacheLimit> tag is in bytes, and can be edited as needed. Increase the value to conserve download bandwidth; decrease the value to conserve client computer disk space.

Error: Object reference not set to an instance of an object

An occasional file system error or an overly-aggressive anti-virus program may corrupt the client configuration or settings files. You may see the message Object reference not set to an instance of an object during log-in.

A clean reinstall of the PDXpert client replaces any corrupt files. If you are not on your server computer:

  1. Using the Windows Control Panel, uninstall the PDXpert client.
  2. In Windows Explorer, enter the path %LocalAppData% which opens the location similar to C:\Users\username\AppData\Local.
  3. Find and delete the PDXpert folder, if any.

    PDXpert folder at %LocalAppData%
  4. In Windows Explorer, enter the path %AppData% which opens the location similar to C:\Users\username\AppData. Open the Roaming folder.
  5. Find and delete the PDXpert folder, if any.

  6. In Windows Explorer, enter the path %ProgramFiles% which opens the location similar to C:\ProgramFiles.

  7. Find and delete the PDXpert folder, if any.

  8. Use the PDXpertClientSetup download link or the PDXpertClientSetup.exe file to install a new instance of the PDXpert client.

Error: Session is no longer alive

The PDXpert server assigns a client session ID when a user logs into the system. The session ID is associated with the logged-in account name on a specific computer, and is kept alive by activity between the PDXpert client and server applications.

If the session is no longer alive:

  • All session IDs have been canceled while the PDXpert server is upgraded. Solution: Restart the client application. In the future, notify users prior to a system upgrade so they can save their work and exit.

  • The user account name is being used simultaneously from multiple workstations or Windows user profiles. Each log-in creates a new session ID for that user name, and invalidates any previous ID assigned to that user. Solution: Assign each user a unique account user name.

  • The connection between the server and the client workstation has been interrupted and cannot be re-established, usually because of poor network reliability. Solution: Diagnose and fix the network errors.

Error: Could not load file or assembly 'PDXpert.UI'

The following error message is displayed when the "localhost" client application cannot be upgraded.

Could not load file or assembly 'PDXpert.UI, Version={release}' or one of its dependencies. The located assembly's manifest definition does not match the assembly reference. (Exception from HRESULT: 0x80131040)

This is the result of installing the entire PDXpert system (SQL Server database, PDXpert server and PDXpert client), and then redirecting the client to a different server. Although the PDXpert client can attach to a remote server that's using the same release, the client fails when the remote server's release is different.

The PDXpert system installs its "localhost" client into the Windows all users (per-machine) profile. Subsequent PDXpert system updates also update the "localhost" client in the per-machine profile. All other PDXpert clients are installed into the Windows user (per-user) profile; a remote server sends the per-user client what's needed to match the server's release. The error occurs because a remote server's per-user code can’t be saved into the localhost client's per-machine profile.


  • If you just want to access a remote server, and don't need a full PDXpert system on your workstation:

    1. Uninstall the local PDXpert system.
    2. Install the PDXpert client application.
    3. Enter the remote server's name or IP address when you log in.
  • If the same physical machine must support both a full PDXpert system and allow access to a remote server:

    1. Install a separate copy of the PDXpert client.
    2. Rename this new client to something distinctive, such as PDXpert User.
    3. When logging into the new client, enter the remote server's name or IP address.
    4. Restore the original PDXpert client log-in to use the localhost server name.
  • If a per-machine client installation (e.g., on a Citrix shared host) is required for accessing a remote server, and the full PDXpert system is not otherwise used: Keep the per-machine client in sync with the remote server by installing/upgrading the same PDXpert system release on both computers.

Error: Login failed for user 'pdxpertuser'.

You may see this error when

  • The server client communication service has been stopped while a client is logged into the system. Solution: Don't stop the PDXpert Application Server's client communication service until all users have logged out of the PDXpert client application.
  • SQL Server is being stretched beyond its ability to handle client requests (for example, if you're using SQL Server Express with more than 10-20 users). Solution: Assess your SQL Server configuration and consider upgrading to a higher-performance edition and/or faster hardware.

Error: Font '[fontname]' does not support style '[style]'.

PDXpert relies upon a few standard Microsoft Windows fonts (Arial, Verdana, Tahoma, etc.) and styles (normal, bold, italic). This error indicates that your computer has a corrupted or missing Windows font. An example of this error, Font 'Arial' does not support style 'Italic', indicates that the italic Arial font is not available on your computer.

Solution: Reinstall the font or copy it from another Windows computer.

  1. Go to your C:\Windows\Fonts directory and find the named font file.
  2. Right-click on the file and select the Copy command. Paste the file to another directory, such as your computer Desktop. Although only one file was copied and pasted, you'll probably see several files, such as arial.ttf, ariblk.ttf and ariali.ttf.
  3. Right-click on each file and select the Install command.
Install to repair font that does not support style

If the reinstallation doesn't work, copy the font from a different Windows machine that does work and place it into the \Fonts folder.

Finally, if all else fails, you can uninstall, then re-install the font: http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-vista/Install-or-uninstall-fonts

Repairing an 8.0.23650.533 client installation

If you see an application error after marking the Reset user settings checkbox, then the client application requires re-installation:

  1. Using the Windows Control Panel, uninstall the PDXpert client.
  2. In Windows Explorer, enter the path %LocalAppData% which opens the location similar to C:\Users\username\AppData\Local.
  3. Find and delete the PDXpert folder.

    PDXpert folder at %LocalAppData%
  4. Use the PDXpertClientSetup download link or the PDXpertClientSetup.exe file to install the PDXpert client. A PostInstaller window may display an error message, which you can ignore by closing the window.

Window handles pool depleted

If a user opens too many item records, the PDXpert client application can crash. On restarting the client, PDXpert attempts to restore the previous workspace settings and, in re-opening the item records, again crashes.

Solution: On the PDXpert client log-in screen, mark the Reset my account settings checkbox, and then log in as usual. Keep the total number of open PDXpert objects to a manageable size, and close item windows when you've finished using them. More details can be found in this Knowledge Base article.

Insufficient Windows system resources

You may see this error when you have many items open within PDXpert, or many other applications open alongside PDXpert. Although this can appear with any version of Windows, it's far more common in 32-bit Windows XP and/or while using a CAD application with many design objects.

Windows resources effect on structure

Solution: This may be cleared by reducing the number of open objects displayed in other applications, or restarting the PDXpert client to reset the allocated system resources.

Error: The 'DbProviderFactories' section can only appear once per config file

This is typically the result of having Microsoft Visual Studio installed on the same computer. When Visual Studio is updated (new version or patch), the VS installer may add an empty <DbProviderFactories/> to the machine.config file. There may be several of these files, such as:

  • C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v2.0.50727\Config\Machine.Config
  • C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework\v4.0.30319\Config\Machine.Config
  • C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v2.0.50727\Config\Machine.Config
  • C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v4.0.30319\Config\Machine.Config

Solution: In each .NET machine.config file on your computer, look for the section <system.data>. Remove the empty XML tag <DbProviderFactories/> and save the file.

Odd display of controls and graphic elements

This error occurs when your screen is not scaled as 100% in your Windows screen settings. The problem is that Windows applies scaling factors inconsistently to fonts, images and controls. Button labels, textboxes and icons may be scaled, while bitmaps, button positions and other controls may remain at 100% (96dpi).

Microsoft has indicated that this issue will not be fixed in older Windows. Applications must be re-written for scaling methods introduced in recent Windows, and compatibility with older Windows will be affected.

Windows personalize display at larger than default (100%) setting

Solution: This may be addressed by returning to the standard Windows 100% scaling factor:

  1. On the Windows Start menu, select Control Panel.
  2. In the Control Panel window, select Display.
  3. On the panel Make it easier to read what's on your screen, select Smaller - 100% (or similar text)
  4. Restart your computer to reset the screen scaling.

Error: PDXpert.UI.ClientLoader at MS.Internal.FontCache.Util..cctor()

The PDXpert client main window partially loads in Windows XP, but fails before displaying the Item Explorer. The client log file includes this exception:

YYYY-MM-DD HH:MM:SS.ssss [1] Error PDXpert.UI.ClientLoader - at System.Uri.CreateThis(String uri, Boolean dontEscape, UriKind uriKind)

at System.Uri..ctor(String uriString, UriKind uriKind)

at MS.Internal.FontCache.Util..cctor()

This error may be the result of an incorrect registry setting for the Windows XP system folder.

Solution: A recommended solution is:

  1. Start the Registry editor (RegEdit.exe).
  2. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Environment.
  3. Check that windir has a type of REG_EXPAND_SZ. If not, back up your registry (File | Export...) and then re-create the entry to be:
    • Name: windir
    • Type: REG_EXPAND_SZ
    • Data: %SystemRoot%
  4. Restart Windows XP and verify proper operation.

Installation Guide Topics

  1. Installation overview
  2. Standard installation
  3. Advanced: Preparing the server
  4. Advanced: SQL Server
  5. Advanced: PDXpert application server
  6. Advanced: PDXpert client
  7. Advanced: Group Policy
  8. Moving your PDXpert PLM database and file library
  9. Upgrade your installation
  10. Microsoft SQL Server diagnostics
  11. Microsoft SQL Server log files
  12. PDXpert server diagnostics
  13. PDXpert client diagnostics
  14. PDXpert system file locations
  15. Release notes (change history)
Related topics