ProjectAssist Woes!

Just when I thought my troubles were over after getting my system licensed, the fun with ProjectAssist began.

I am a regular user (and administrator) of some of the ProjectAssist’s supported open source technologies.

When I first heard about ProjectAssist, I was excited:

ProjectAssist provides simple, single point installation and configuration of a complete developer tool stack for bug tracking, source code management, project planning/tracking, requirements management and continuous integration builds.

ProjectAssist dramatically reduces the time and complexity for startup of new projects by guiding the setup process for new team and project environment definitions.

Wizards help to create new deployment models – with options for deep and shallow scanning to discover pre-existing services that can be reused.

ProjectAssist can save days or even weeks of manual configuration and integration.

That last part (saving weeks of time) sounded great, as I am in the process of migrating all our development resources to a new server, so I thought I would give it a try. If this works out and I am happy with the admin functionality, our company will for sure buy a copy of the enterprise edition, as it could more than make up for the cost in saved time.

  1. I went to my new server, and ran the installer.
  2. I licensed the install (I could not do this until today due to license issues explored in my last post)
  3. The installer completed and I fired up the ProjectAssist project wizard.
  4. I told it that I wanted everything.
  5. The project wizard scanned my drives and determined that I had apache already installed. (I did and it was working great). There did not seem to be an option to use an existing apache installation, so I uninstalled apache, and continued the wizard.
  6. It got to a finishing screen and showed a screen with all the applications it would configure. so far so good.
  7. Each application had a list of options beside it, which I went through. Some had red symbols, indicating issues.
  8. I went into each issue and addressed them. First on the list was bugzilla, as it complaied that I did not have sendmail.
  9. Next on the was a shared component, MySQL. I did not like the fact that a MySQL service was already running or that the default port was in use. So, I removed the service and uninstalled MySQL from the system. That made it stop complaining.
  10. It did not complain about subversion (which was running) although I am not sure why.
  11. At this point, everything seemed to be ready to configure and I figured it would be fun to watch it all start working magically. It asked for the username and password for all the users it needed to set up, and I dutifully entered them. Now for the fun !

At this point, the wizard went to the next stop (setting up the applications.) It then displayed the following:

At this point, the install process would begin. However, the trial edition does not deploy custom ProjectAssist configurations. You may keep this configuration file to be used with the full Enterprise edition.

Instead, the trial edition will skip ahead, as if it had installed, and point at some demo servers. To access those services, use these credentials:

User ID: user2



What??? You have to be kidding me!

Here are my main issues:

  1. I am within a coroprate environment that does not allow me to access any of the required ports (4370, etc). so I can not use demo environments.
  2. The purpose of trying this edition was to se how smoothly the setup and administration of the products would be, not to test the integration of the IDE. I have no problem if the trial stops me from administering the applications in the future (as I will have bought the product by then) but what use is a trial if it does not let you try the full functionality?
  3. Lastly, don’t you think it would make sense to inform the user of this trial limitation before a lot of time was spent getting it setup and configured? Not to mention time I now have to re-spend reinstalling applications like mysql and apache. 🙁 Perhaps it is written in the documentation somewhere but if so, the wizard needs to say it in bold before you configure everything.

I am not impressed.

<going back to work, reinstalling all my apps that used to work before…>

About andy dingfelder

Andy is a CISO/CTO in the fintech sector with over 20 years of experience in Software Delivery and Team Leadership in multiple industry domains. Master's Degree (MPA) in Public Administration Information Systems and over 10 years of board governance experience for multiple organisations. Full bio is available at: and links available at or follow him on Twitter at Andy lives in the Wellington region, New Zealand with his wife and two daughters.
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