How do I install two different versions of Primavera P6 Professional on one machine?
It’s not completely straightforward, but possible. Here’s how to do it.
Specifically I will be talking about Primavera P6 Professional version 7.0 and version 8.3 here, so there will be certain combinations that will require additional steps and offer enough variables that I might not be finished describing all the steps before the next administration takes office. So for now, let’s look at these versions, as indeed, these are what I tested.
To keep this brief, there are some basic considerations that will apply whatever versions you are installing.
- Each version of the P6 Professional client will require its own database. So you will need to use the dbsetup.bat for Windows, or the dbsetup.sh for Unix databases to build a correctly versioned database for each client version.
- Install the newest version first. If you don’t install the newest version first, the installer will insist on “upgrading” the existing version. So don’t do that. I tried it already and spent a couple of hours trying to isolate the registry key the installer was using to know there was an older version on there already. I never found it. There are dozens, if not hundreds of Primavera keys in the registry (I lost count) and renaming .exe files, and directories didn’t work either.
- If both version you are installing are pre-R8.0, then rename the Common Files directory for one of the installs.
All this was done on a 64-bit Windows 7 operating system.
In my test I installed P6 Professional R8.3 with all the defaults and then connected it to my already created database called PMDB. Okay so far.
Next I installed version 7.0. However, during the installation, I changed the name of the installation directory by adding R7 at the end of the path string:
e.g. C:\Program Files (x86)\Oracle\Primavera P6 R7\
This stopped it installing the program in the same location as my existing R8.3 directory and thus trashing my newer version.
From here on I went with all the defaults, including the Common Files directory default name (because R8.3 doesn’t use a Common Files directory), and connected this version to my R7 database (I called this PMDB7 just to be clear about which was which).
Both applications will run without issues, but not at the same time. Because the program executable files are both named PM.exe, you can’t run them simultaneously.
Note: all versions prior to P6 R8.0 used a Common Files directory, so just renaming the program directory didn’t work. You have to also give the Common Files directory a different name from the newer installed version, or again it trashes your Common Files by overwriting them with earlier versions – not pretty. So if you’re working with Version 6.0 and 7.0, you will need to rename one of their common directories.
Disclaimer – It’s been some years since I’ve installed two pre-R8.0 releases on the same machine, so I may not have total recall on this latter note about these Pre-R8.0 versions. As far as I recall, it was all about that Common Files directory rename, but I may have forgotten a detail or two. Nevertheless, I do know the R7.0 and R8.3 method works as described because I did it a couple of weeks back and have been using both versions without issues.
Feel free to write in with any comments or ‘yes-and’ ideas about going Co-Ed on different versions of P6. It’s always interesting to hear about your experiences out there in P6 land.
Remember; we’re trained professional here, so trying this at home is done entirely at your own risk. 🙂