Creating a PW Network Diagram

In all of my ProjectWise deployments, one of the first things I develop is an architecture diagram depicting a structure of the system hardware and ProjectWise components that run on them, showing how the hardware and software components work together.  In other words, an architecture diagram should include the hardware for your ProjectWise system; including key specifications such has CPUs, operating system and RAM(memory).  The diagram should also show the software that is installed on that hardware, both the required Windows components for ProjectWise and the exact ProjectWise modules. 

A good architecture diagram will also show applications that are deployed to several machines, for example the ProjectWise Orchestration Framework as well as the physical location of the servers, noting if any reside behind a corporate firewall or a DMZ (Demilitarized Zone) and the port(s) used. 

Of course, before you can develop the architecture diagram, you need to determine the scope of your ProjectWise deployment.  Some considerations include: 

Identify the size of the deployment. Will ProjectWise be used by select corporate stakeholders (departments, business units, etc.)?  Or will it be used throughout your organization?   Make sure your design considers long-range planning as many companies will scale the use of ProjectWise over time.

Consider fundamental technical issues.  Will any existing systems need to interact/integrate with ProjectWise?  How robust does your system need to be (will there be redundant hardware to failover to)? What/who will need to connect to and/or interact with your system and how will they do it? What operating system and database will your system use? How secure does the system need to be?  Do you need a DMZ?  Will any ProjectWise components require a SSL certificate?

Identify Responsibilities.  Most ProjectWise deployments will involve multiple IT/System technicians.  Consider who will be responsible for making server and network decisions, database configurations and, if using the Web component, does anyone possess IIS/XML experience.  Further, who will administrate ProjectWise?

Distribute software to nodes. Identify how ProjectWise will be deployed on each workstation and include critical information such as ProjectWise configurations, licensing information and make sure you consider all desktop applications (ProjectWise Explorer, InterPlot, Navigator, etc.) 

Having a solid architecture diagram of your ProjectWise configuration will aide both your organization and Bentley during the installation, as well as troubleshooting any problems or with future upgrades.