BES Installation Instructions

Welcome to the BigFix Enterprise Suite (BES) installation instructions. Using these instructions you should be able to quickly and easily get a license to use BES and then install the BES Server, BES Console, and BES Clients.

Note: In order to install a production copy of BES, you will first need to have purchased a license from BigFix, Inc. or authorized reseller. Click here if you would like to try an evaluation version of BES or click here for sales contact information.

Part 1: BES Installation Requirements
Before installing BES, you need to make sure that you have an "install computer" that will be used to create the private keys, create the installers, and run the BES Console (often this computer will be your workstation or BES Server computer) and you will need a server computer that meets all of the BES Server system requirements. For more detailed installation and administration information, please refer to the BES Admin Guide on the Product Documentation page.

Part 2: Masthead/key creation
Before you can use BES, you need to create the signing keys and masthead for security and license reasons. (Perform the steps listed below on the install computer.)

    Create Site Credentials / Request License
  1. Download the latest version of BES from here.
  2. Run the installer, when prompted choose "Production" installation.
  3. Choose the option "I want to request a production license from BigFix, Inc."
  4. Fill in the name, organization, and email fields. Please verify the email name is correct because the license file will be returned to this address (Note: The license will be returned to you as an email attachment with the file "license.crt" file in a "" file.)
  5. Choose an IP or hostname that will allow BES Clients to resolve the BES Server's IP address (A hostname, such as "", is recommended because of its flexibility when changing server computers and doing advanced network configurations), number of licenses, and length of license (Note: After the IP/hostname is chosen, it cannot be changed unless a completely new action site is created.)
  6. Check the boxes if your license contract includes custom actions and custom retrieved properties (normally these are included).
  7. Type in a site credentials password. This is the "master" password for BES. It will be used whenever you create additional users or change the masthead parameters. This password is very important and should follow your organization's policies for important passwords. If you lose this password, you will need to completely reinstall BES!
  8. Create a new folder in a secure location (i.e., in a folder "BES Site Credentials" with secure permissions or on a removable drive) and save your private key files. If you lose these private key files, you will need to completely reinstall BES! (Note: Anyone with these private key files and password will theoretically have full control over all computers with BES Clients installed so make sure to keep the key files and passwords secured.)
  9. Choose the option to submit your request over the Internet. A request file will be sent to BigFix for license verification. Note: Your private key files and password are NOT sent to BigFix or anywhere else.
  10. Click "Finish" to complete the license request and key generation steps.
  11. BigFix will review your request, verify the parameters, and send you an email containing a certificate file that will allow you to use BES (the license will usually be returned within 24 hours). The license will be returned to you as an email attachment with the file "license.crt" file in a "" file. If your email server blocks these types of attachments or if you haven't received your license after 24 hours, please contact BigFix technical support for more information.

    Import License / Create Masthead

  12. After you receive your certificate file from BigFix, run the BES installer again.
  13. Choose "I want to install with a production license I already have" when prompted.
  14. Choose the certificate file, license.crt, that was sent to you from BigFix (Note: Certain versions of Microsoft Outlook will not allow attachments that end in .crt. In order to avoid this problem, BigFix will send back a file called that contains the license.crt file. This file can be extracted by WinZip or any other zip program.)
  15. Choose the license.pvk file in the site credential folder that was created in step 8 above.
  16. Choose the action site parameters as directed. (If you are unsure of the parameters, use the defaults.)
  17. Type in your site credentials password created in step 7 above.
  18. Save your masthead file in the site credentials folder.
  19. Choose the folder to install the BES component installers. Note that this step will create the installers for the BES Client, BES Console, and BES Server, but will not actually install the components.
  20. The BES Installation Guide will now be launched to lead you through the installation of the BES components.
Part 3: BES Component Installation
Now you are ready to install the BigFix Enterprise Suite. You will need to install each component on the appropriate computer(s).
    Install BES Server
  1. Click on "Install BES Server" in the BES Installation Guide or, alternately, copy the BES Server installation folder from the install computer (default "C:\BESInstallers\Server") to the BES Server computer and run setup.exe.
  2. Follow the installer's directions to continue the installation.
  3. The installer will prompt you to install the SQL Server 2000 Desktop Engine (MSDE 2000 SP3a) (if SQL Server 2000 or MSDE 2000 are not already installed) -- choose 'Yes' to install MSDE 2000 SP3a.
  4. You will be prompted to use either the BigFix Root Server or IIS for the installation. The BigFix Root Server is recommended because it performs better and configuration is simpler.
  5. Choose the appropriate folders to place the BES Server and web server files.
  6. Create a default 'sa' (System Administrator) password for SQL Server to be used whenever database administration functions need to be performed.
  7. You will be prompted to select the masthead, license.crt, and license.pvk that were created in the "BES Site Credentials" folder in Part 2 above. You can store the BES keys on a removable drive or on a different computer for additional security.
  8. Create users who are authorized to use the BES Console.
    • When you create a user, it will automatically create a database account and a set of private key files that will allow the BES Console operator to digitally sign actions.
    • The username, password, and keys will need to be delivered to the BES Console operator so they can use the BES Console.
    • Check the "Give this user ability to administer management rights" to give the user full control over all computers in BES. Otherwise, you will need to explicitly grant rights to non-admins on specific computers.
    • There needs to be at least one administrator created for BES to function properly.
    • Check the "Custom Actions" box to allow users to create Custom Actions in BES, which allows them to take any action on BES Client computers instead of only actions predefined in the Fixlet content (such as installing patches).
  9. The BES Diagnostics tool will run after the installer completes (or if you need a restart, the diagnostics tool will run after the restart completes) to ensure that everything is working properly.

    Install BES Console

  10. Click on "Install BES Console" in the BES Installation Guide or, alternately, copy the BES Console installation folder from the install computer (default "C:\BESInstallers\Console") to the BES Console computer and run setup.exe.
  11. Follow the installer's instructions to complete the installation.
  12. After installation run the BES Console from the icon on your desktop.
  13. Log on to the database using the adminstrative user you created in step 8 of part 3. You will be also be prompted to select your publisher keys.
  14. The BES Server will then gather the latest Fixlet content for the BigFix Fixlet Sites. This process may take a few minutes.
  15. Install BES Clients

  16. The BES Clients should be installed on all the computers that you wish to administer (including the computers running the BES Server and BES Console).
  17. Click on "Install BES Clients" > "Install Locally" in the BES Installation Guide or, alternately, run the BES Client installer manually from the install location (default "C:\BESInstallers\Client") by running setup.exe.
  18. Follow the installation instructions.
  19. For the other computers in your network, you have multiple options to deploy BES Clients.
    • You can use network shares to manually install the BES Clients (simply run the setup.exe from the BES Client installation folder while logged in as a user with admin rights on that computer).
    • For Windows NT domains or Windows AD domains, you can use your domain administration user to deploy BES Clients using the BES Client Deploy Tool located at Start > Programs > BigFix Enterprise > BES Client Deploy (on the computer that was used to run the BES Installation Generator).
    • You can use login scripts to automatically install the BES Client on computers.
    • You can use package deployment applications (such as SMS, Tivoli, etc.) to deploy BES Clients.
    • You can use any mechanism/procedure that you currently use to install applications within your network.
    • More information on BES Client deployment can be found in the BES Administrator's Guide.
  20. Shortly after you install the BES Clients (within 1-3 minutes), you will see them appear in the "Computers" and report their relevant Fixlet messages in the BES Console.
  21. You can now view relevant Fixlet messages and deploy actions across your network using the BES Console.