Technical Considerations for CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement and Workpaper Manager.

  • Article Type:
  • Documentation
  • Last Modified:
  • 11/08/2023

Objectives

To convey important technical considerations for firms implementing Engagement or Workpaper Manager.

Environment

  • CCH ProSystem fx Engagement
  • CCH ProSystem fx Workpaper Manager

Details

Please review the information below before implementing Engagement or Workpaper Manager:

Admin Share Folder

For logging purposes, the Administrator module writes to ?:\Pfx Engagement\Admin\Admin Share or C:\Program Files (x86)\Pfx Engagement\Admin\Admin Share where "?" is the drive that CCH ProSystem fx Engagement or Workpaper Manager is installed to. We strongly recommend that Admin users be given rights to this folder, which allows the system to properly log all Administrator actions. Administrator actions can be performed even if the system cannot write to the log files.

For more information, see What is the "Admin Share" folder that is created during the installation of CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement or Workpaper Manager?

Computer Names and Name Resolution

  • Engagement and Workpaper Manager rely on the NetBIOS computer name for internal program communications. NetBIOS requires computer names to be a maximum of 15 characters. We strongly recommend against renaming the computer after installing the SQL instance for Engagement/Workpaper Manager. Doing so may cause serious issues in the program. If the computer name has been renamed or modified the the after installation and is experiencing issues, contact support.
Note: Due to possible data loss and installation issues, imaging machines with Engagement and the SQL instance for Engagement already installed is not supported.
  • When first launching Workpaper Management, an office server must be selected, or manually typed in, to connect to. In some cases, the server name may not be found. This can happen when trying to connect to another Workpaper Management install when in field mode. The primary cause of this issue is the network not being able to resolve the NetBIOS name of the workstations and servers across networks. These networks include Virtual LANs, Subnets, or WANs. The following four methods can be used to alleviate this issue:
    • Setting up a DNS server (preferred)
    • Creating and using HOSTS and LMHOSTS files
    • Setting up a WINS server
    • Using the Engagement Configuration Utility
For further details on the methods listed above, consult the Microsoft® knowledge base or contact your system administrator.

Domain Controllers

Due to Admin Sync failures and issues transferring Transition Binder Packages between Office Servers, we do not support installing the Administrator module on a Domain Controller. Doing so puts the server in the role of being a database and file server. If the Domain Controller goes down, the Admin module and central file rooms will not be available. We recommend using a separate server for the Admin Module.

Note: Microsoft does not recommend installing SQL Server on a Domain Controller. See the Microsoft knowledge base for information on SQL Server installation.

Internet Security and Acceleration (ISA) Server Connection Settings

Synchronization failures for large binders can be caused by the number of connections the ISA server allows per client. It may be needed to remove the per-client connection limit to successfully synchronize these binders. In the Connection Limit window, clear the Limit the number of connections option.

Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word Add-ins

See What are the recommended settings in Microsoft® Excel® and Word for opening workpapers from CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement or Workpaper Manager? for more information about using Excel and Word add-ins.

Other SQL Applications

If installing Engagement or Workpaper Manager on a computer which currently has an application using SQL as its database engine, the SQL service must be stopped before installing Engagement/Workpaper Manager. When upgrading or reinstalling Engagement, stop all other SQL services before upgrading, but leave the SQL Server® (PROFXENGAGEMENT) service running.

  • Important: Failure to do this may cause one or both of the applications to fail.
See How to start, stop, or restart the CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement or Workpaper Manager services? for more information.

Ports

The ports used by Engagement and Workpaper Manager are listed in the article What ports are used by CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement or Workpaper Manager for data transfer? These ports are configured on the server and workstations during installation. However, if connecting over a VPN or through a firewall, or another device such as a router, it must be ensured that these ports are open for the program to work correctly.

Services

Engagement uses several services for communication between local file rooms and office servers, as well as between the office servers. For a current list of services, see What are the CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement and CCH® ProSystem fx® Workpaper Manager services?

TCP/IP

Engagement and SQL rely on TCP/IP for network and system connections. Internet Protocol v4 (IPv4) and Internet Protocol v6 (IPv6) are supported. Server and client machines must have the same version of the Internet Protocol available in order to communicate. 

See How to check and configure the SQL TCP/IP protocol for CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement or Workpaper Manager? for more information.

Third-Party Backup and Restore Processes

If using a third-party backup software to back up the Engagement databases, it will not be possible to restore a single binder to the central file room. Only through the Backup and Restore Utility provided with Engagement and Workpaper Manager will the restoration of a single binder or an entire central file room be possible.

See What is the Backup and Restore Utility for CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement or CCH® ProSystem fx® Workpaper Manager?


If using the differential backup option in the Database Backup & Restore Utility, when full backups are performed on a database using a third-party backup software, the differential backup will be impacted. Any databases that were backed up using the third-party software will also be backed up in full as part of the differential backup, which will increase the size of the differential backup file.

The firm may have additional requirements for third-party backups that need to be considered. Refer to the Frequently Asked Questions section on the Engagement and Workpaper Manager Support sites.
 

Time Synchronization

Time synchronization ensures that the latest changes in the binders are processed correctly during synchronization. Verifying that the servers and workstations are synchronized for time can help ensure that data is not lost. To ensure time synchronization, we recommend using LAN-based time synchronization software.

  • Important: Time synchronization needs to occur on the network. Tools such as the NET TIME command allows the choice of a computer on the network to synchronize its clock with. We do not recommend having users sync with time servers on the Internet, as each server could be several seconds off.
See How do I ensure my network time is synced? for more information.

Language and Regional Settings
On workstations and servers with a language other than English (United States) there may be errors installing and using SQL and CCH ProSystem fx Engagement.
  • When choosing regional and language settings for the workstation, they can be applied to special accounts in Windows called reserved accounts.
  • Reserved accounts include the default user account and the system accounts.
  • Since SQL uses the Local System account, it will cause issues with CCH ProSystem fx Engagement.
  • It will be recommended to only use English (United States) Language and Regional settings.
To change the Regional Settings in Windows 10:
  1. Click on the Windows start menu. Click on Control Panel.
  2. Click on Clock and Region.
  3. Click on Region.
  4. On the Formats tab, the Format: should be set to English (United States).
  5. If changes were made, click Apply then click OK.
How to check the Time and Date format for Windows through Control Panel:
  1. Right click the clock in the lower right corner and select Adjust date/time.
  2. Click the link "Date, time, & regional formatting" on the right side of the window under the Related settings.
  3. Change the Regional format drop down to English (United States).
  4. Close and reopen Engagement to pick up the change.

User Rights

The installation process sets the Engagement folder permissions automatically. These rights are needed for Engagement to function optimally. The installation gives the Users group all rights except Full Control. These rights are inherited by all child objects so that all folders and subfolders in Engagement receive these same rights.
  • Workpaper Location User Rights. Engagement uses the PFXSYNPFTService.exe service (or Pfx sync service) to transfer the workpapers from the LFR to the CFR that does not require the user to have rights to the CFR location. The service works by emulating File Transfer Protocol (FTP) and only requires that the service itself have rights to the destination location.

By default, the service runs under the Local System Account, which has full access to the local computer. However, if the CFR workpaper location is on another computer, the service must be configured to run under a user account with Full Control rights to the destination location of the workpapers folder. The first step in this process is to create a user on each server that has rights to all Engagement-related directories and folders. Once there is a user on each server the login on the office server must be modified (the server where the database files are located). See How do I modify the login for the PFXSYNPFTService for CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement Administrator or Workpaper Manager Administrator? for instructions.

  • Shared File Room Workpaper Location User Rights. The Engagement Shared File Room is dependent on Windows file sharing to function. The Host user must have proper rights to share folders on the Workstation, and remote users must authenticate to the host machine. See the Shared File Room Guide, available for download from the Engagement and Workpaper Manager Support sites, for details.
Note: Due to file locking issues with Shared File Room, we do not support having two users log into the same Workpaper Manager profile (using the same login ID) at the same time via Citrix or Terminal Services.
 
See How to find the folder permissions that are required for CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement or Workpaper Manager. for more information.

Encryption

Engagement and Workpaper Manager supports full drive level encryption through Microsoft Bitlocker.
  • Important! (Engagement and Workpaper Manager only supports Microsoft Bitlocker by implementing full disk encryption and to ensure it is transparent to current installed applications. Engagement or Workpaper Manager does not support encryption at the database nor file/folder level.)
Database level encryption methods such as Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) through Microsoft SQL Server are not supported.
Third party encryption software are not tested and also not supported by Engagement and Workpaper Manager.
 
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