Sunday, April 26, 2009

Installing DB2 Express on Windows

Software Quality is in short supply - even in big shops like IBM.  I can call today - a bad software day - struggled installing DB2 express on my laptop, struggled with entering timesheets in the homegrown time-tested (and patience testing) application.

Before starting, if you believe in a supreme power, pray to it.  If you do not, you will start believing in one when you go through the process.

Now, it is time to share my experience in installing DB2 Express.

When selecting user login for running the services, you have multiple choices - a system account, a local user and a domain user.  
  • Setting it up as system account will continue with obscure messages that it can't set the user's properties.  Once the installation ends, you will find all applications in your programs, but none of them will work.  All would show an error message with the code "DB2INSTANCE : -2029059916" and would ask you to investigate further.  It simply means that the installation wasn't complete though you get to see all the applications.  Fixing the installation won't work.  Uninstall, restart and try installing again.
  • You may be lucky when trying to set it up as domain user account, but I didn't have much luck - be it an active directory or a Samba based domain controller.  A coworker mentioned that it took about 4 hours to install it.  The error messages will keep you guessing on what is going wrong.  You need extensive experience to read the mind of the developer who created those messages.  To cut the story short - give it a try once.  If it fails, try the local user account.
  • If you had logged in as domain user, but if you try to set up the service in another local user's login, you will still get errors like that the user is not an administrator.  Best option would be, create a local user, login as local user, begin the installation, give the local user credentials for running the services and continue.
After installation, add all the users (including the domain user) who need to administer the instance to the DB2Admin group.  Add other users to DB2User group - using Administrative Tools -> Computer Management -> Local Users & Groups.

Then start FirstStep application.  This is supposed to help you in creating databases.  If the installation had gone fine, it might have created a sample DB in :\DB2\NODE000.  When you try to create a new DB, the wizard will prompt for the DB name, its path etc.  Though it refers the field as the default path, it means the drive.  So, if you had installed it in C drive, leave the value as C:\ - you may try giving other drives, but remember it is only drive and not the path.  If you had given a path, you will again get a confusing message that only IBM developers and testers understand.

Once the database is created, thank your personal deities.  Good Luck! - you'd need it.

1 comment:

Sridhar said...

Bad software day continues - for some reason, in a section of the post the font appears bigger. I couldn't get it to the right size and don't have the patience to edit the mark-up.