BESX – BlackBerry Enterprise Server Express

Subtitled – Woh! BESE

Going through a BESE installation I’ve noticed a few things I wished someone had shared with me beforehand and so I’ll share them for anyone who hasn’t installed this software so you can be better prepared.

First don’t use the BlackBerry written instructions but only as a supplement if at all.  Instead use the new BlackBerry step by step video; it covers in details the steps that are vague or inaccurate in the written tutorial.  Both are found off the BESX software page’s link for documents.  Also you can specifically choose a SBS installation walkthrough which isn’t covered at all in the written version.

  • The written instructions leave a lot of information out (If you never did this before you would be scratching your head in the configuring Exchange System Manager parts)
  • The instructions are not written for SBS where Exchange sits on the Domain Controller
    • not a Workgroup computer
    • no Local Admin group (use Built In -> Administrators instead)
    • cannot set Log on Locally or Run as Service in Secpol.msc (use the Domain Controller Security Policy found through Administrator Tools)
  • Java hasn’t been at version 6 v15 for some time and the installer didn’t detect that the current 6 v20 was there
    • so stupid installer installs an insecure version of Java anyway (which I’ll have to remove)

BESE install

Once through with the database portion of the checklist the server has to reboot.  Once back up and signed in with the newly created BB account you created then you finish it up.  The SRP info and BlackBerry CAL information were given to you previously online at the time you registered for the download.  If you didn’t follow those directions to record it then you will have to go back online and attempt to retrieve them.

When I got to the Start Services portion nothing was starting up.  I manually went into the Services.msc console and started each and every service successfully.  It took awhile for the BB installer to recognize that all the services were running and then I was given the option to Finish.

Following this you will hopefully succeed in seeing a web based UI to add a User so you can use this crappy program.  Did I say that?  sorry

For my first go it was a 3 hour ordeal.   BlackBerry needs to continue to improve the initial installation/activation process on their software IMHO or they will get forgotten by the very simple to configure I-phone/Android phone w/ Exchange Active Sync.


6 responses to “BESX – BlackBerry Enterprise Server Express

  1. rubbish isn’t it!

    I’ve done a couple now and while I don’t think the installation is difficult I really think it doesn’t need to be so long winded.

  2. the java issue bit one of my techs today. his solution was to entirely remove java from the server and let besx install it’s own java and then update afterwards.
    The other gotcha we often have issues with is AD removing access from users with admin rights on mailboxes.
    Also i’ve found that if you have the sql server on another box and reboot it, the bes services will crash and may not recover without manual intervention to start the services leading to very annoyed ceo’s when they don’t get their email fix.

    • my solution was to just let BESX aka BESE install the wrong version and then removed it. The higher version remained intact. If there is any question of the integrity of Java I would just go online and reinstall it. As of now I haven’t had to do this. As for the users with “Domain Admin” rights, there has been a known issue and workaround since the BES days when BES was all there was. I’ll check my notes sometime this weekend and post that tip for you. At the time I’m on holiday and you cannot change my mind. 🙂

    • I wrote a follow up post to address the user with Admin rights special treatment required issues. Let me know if this is helpful.

  3. Tired Of SBS & BESE

    My install went quite well. No issues until I start the web console app and nothing. Can’t access either the secure 3443 of the unsecure 18180. This is a real pain as I now have CAL’s but no way to register them.
    Would any of you folks dealt with this issue?

    • You can try to rerun the install – had a similar problem my first go around because I hadn’t yet found and followed the video tutorial. Consequently I had missed a couple of things. The reinstall fixed it all and it ran successfully.

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