Walkthrough: Configuring EXM in a scaled environment

Last updated Friday, July 14, 2017 in Email Experience Manager for Developer, Administrator

If your Sitecore solution works in a scaled environment, you must configure the Email Experience Manager (EXM) module to work in this environment.

A scaled environment usually consists of one content management server, and one or more content delivery server(s). You can configure servers for a specific purpose (for example, content management, content delivery, or processing) by enabling or disabling the relevant configuration files on each Sitecore instance.

In the standard multiserver Sitecore environment, all the content management and content delivery instances share the Core and Web databases, and all the content management instances share the Master database. This means that you have to use the same connection strings to the databases for the configuration file of each server.

The following diagram illustrates the connections between the servers and the content databases in a standard multiserver Sitecore setup:

exm_Sitecore_Scaled_Environment.png

A multiserver environment also shares the collection database (MongoDB) and the reporting SQL Server database.

This walkthrough outlines how to:

Configure a content management server

To configure a content management server:

  1. Install Sitecore Experience Platform and configure it according to the Sitecore scaling recommendations for content management servers.
  2. Add the exm.dispatch connection string to \App_Config\ConnectionStrings.config:
    <add name="exm.dispatch" connectionString="user id=user;password=password;Data Source=(server);Database=Sitecore_EXM" /> 
  3. Install the EXM module.

    Important

    The EXM installation package that you download from dev.sitecore.net includes five zip packages – the Email Experience Manager and four zip files that match specific server roles. Do not use the files intended for other servers on the content management server.

  4. Perform all the required post-installation steps.

Configure a content delivery server

To configure a content delivery server:

  1. Install Sitecore Experience Platform and configure it according to the Sitecore scaling recommendations for content delivery servers.

    Important

    In the Sitecore.Analytics.Tracking.config file, ensure that the value of the Analytics.ClusterName setting is the hostname of the content delivery server. This is required for a scaled environment to avoid contacts being locked when running EXM. If there is more than one content delivery server in your environment, use the same value for each server.

    In addition, make sure that the content management server can reach the content delivery server through HTTP using the hostname that you have specified in the Analytics.ClusterName setting of the content delivery server.

  2. To configure the connection strings:
    • Add a connection string to the EmailCampaignClientService web service:
    <add name="EmailCampaignClientService" connectionString="url=http://<CMServerHost>/sitecore%20modules/web/emailcampaign/ecmclientservice.asmx;timeout=60000" />
    • Add the exm.dispatch connection string to \App_Config\ConnectionStrings.config:
    <add name="exm.dispatch" connectionString="user id=user;password=password;Data Source=(server);Database=Sitecore_EXM" /> 
  3. Add the following setting to the Sitecore.Analytics.config file:
    <setting name="Analytics.DefaultDefinitionDatabase" value="web" />
  4. Extract the relevant Email Experience Manager – Content Delivery package to your website root folder on the content delivery server.
  5. Disable the Sitecore.EmailExperience.ContentDelivery.config configuration file on the primary CM server if you no longer want to use it as a content delivery server.

Configure a processing server

To configure a processing server for Analytics data processing and aggregation:

  1. Install Sitecore Experience Platform and configure it according to the Sitecore scaling recommendations for processing servers.
  2. Add the exm.dispatch connection string to \App_Config\ConnectionStrings.config:
    <add name="exm.dispatch" connectionString="user id=user;password=password;Data Source=(server);Database=Sitecore_EXM" />
  3. Extract the relevant Email Experience Manager - Analytics Processing package to your website root folder on the processing server.
  4. Disable the Sitecore.EmailExperience.AnalyticsProcessing.config configuration file on the primary CM server to stop processing Analytics data.

Configure a reporting server

To configure a reporting server:

  1. Install Sitecore Experience Platform and configure it according to the Sitecore scaling recommendations for reporting servers.
  2. Extract the relevant Email Experience Manager - Reporting package to your website root folder on the reporting server.
  3. Disable the Sitecore.EmailExperience.Reporting.config configuration file on the primary CM server to deactivate configuration that is only relevant for reporting servers.

Configure the List Manager

To configure the List Manager to use the list management functionality in a scaled environment:

  1. Disable the List Manager on every instance except for the content management instance. To disable the List Manager, disable all the configuration files in the App_Config\Include\ListManagement folder.
  2. On the content management instance, disable the following configuration files in the App_Config\Include\ListManagement folder:
    • Sitecore.ListManagement.Lucene.IndexConfiguration.config
    • Sitecore.ListManagement.Lucene.Index.List.config
  3. On the content management instance, enable the following configuration files in the App_Config\Include\ListManagement folder:
    • Sitecore.ListManagement.Solr.Index.List.config.disabled
    • Sitecore.ListManagement.Solr.IndexConfiguration.config.disabled
  4. On your Solr server instance, create an additional Solr core for the List Manager index. The core must have a unique name.
  5. In the Sitecore.ListManagement.Solr.Index.List.config file, in the <param desc="core"></param> element, specify the name of the Solr core created in the previous step.
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