In addition to your installed Project Insight production server, a test site may be set up for the purposes of development, testing and redundancy. Please note that test sites are not covered by your support agreement and are the full responsibility of your internal personnel for installation and support services. If you do prefer to use Metafuse services for test servers, these services may be purchased separately from your support agreement.
This test server should be set up in accordance with the installation instructions and requirements of the production server. There are a few common omissions in the test environment as compared to the production environment as follows:
The Project Insight Windows Service is usually not installed because it is used for sending auto-alerts (email notifications). These notifications would be undesirable when running tests with database data from the production site. If installed, users may get email notifications from two different servers for the same content, or worse yet, notifications from the test server containing outdated alert information. The Project Insight Windows Service is used exclusively for sending notifications via email and will not impact the operation of the Project Insight Web application.
The Project Insight MS Project XML Conversion Service is often not installed because native MS Project file import and export testing is not planned for the testing site. It may also require that another license of MS Project is procured for this purpose. Please direct any questions about MS Project licensing to your Microsoft vendor.
When testing with a restored backup from the production site database, you may not find it necessary to copy the files users have uploaded into the system. These files are contained in the production server file system and not in the database. The database simply references the files so that the application can access them from the proper file server location. The default location for these files is in the [drive]\Inetpub\Project Insight\Sites\Files folder and all subfolders within it. Those files which are referenced in the database, but not on the server, will appear functionally the same as in production until such time that the user attempts to access the file for downloading or opening it. At that time they will get an error. This error is usually seen as inconsequential in the test environment except in the uncommon scenario in which file upload/download testing is desired on the test server.
Users performing tests on the test server should be made aware of the above exceptions so that expectations are properly set for their test results.